Nail fungal infections are also called unguium and onychomycosis. The fungi involved here are those that cause athlete’s foot, which is a common infection that affects the skin and feet. In the case of athlete’s foot, the fungi thrive through the keratin found in the skin’s outer layer, but they can also invade the nail’s keratin in which case it becomes a nail fungal infection.
2What is the cause of onychomycosis?
Fungi that spread from an athlete’s foot also known as dermatophyte fungi cause most nail fungal infections. Some cases of infection are caused by yeasts and molds, which don’t give you athlete’s foot. These microorganisms tend to attack nails that are already weak, perhaps after a previous injury. Fungal nail infections often occur in toenails than fingernails, and they commonly affect the elderly.
What does it look like or what are its common symptoms?
At the start of the nail infection, more often there are no symptoms. As the infection spreads, the nail may become thicker and more painful when they are pressed inside the shoe. After then, they become difficult to trim. In a nail fungal infection, the infected areas of the nail turn yellow or white. The nail also becomes brittle and crumbly. Less common symptoms include white streaks or patches on the nail surface. The big toes and little toes are the ones that are usually most affected.
How can nail infections be treated?
Nail fungal infections do not heal on their own. But not all cases of nail fungal infections require treatment. The aim of a nail fungus treatment is to eliminate the fungus. With the fungus gone, the nail usually returns to normal. Treatments can be taken by mouth in the form of antifungal pills. The pills have to be taken for several months. Some nail fungal treatments can be applied directly to the nails. Usually, this comes as a nail lacquer or a nail solution.