What Causes Nail Fungus?

Nail fungus is a common condition that begins as white or yellow spots or discoloration underneath the tip of your nail. Without treatment, It can further infect your nail, become more discolored, thicken, and your nail may begin to crumble. While there are at-home treatments, the most effective way to get rid of nail fungus for good is by getting treatment from a medical professional. But, what causes nail fungus?

Nail fungus can arise due to a variety of factors. It is often caused by fungi that are underneath or on your nail. Fungus grows exponentially in warm environments that have moisture. Places like the salon, community pools, and even gym locker rooms can all host fungi that can impact your nails. It can be spread from person to person quickly, so protecting yourself and ensuring you remain aware of any unsanitary environments is vital to stay safe.

Risk Factors

Below are some of the common factors that place you at a higher risk of contracting nail fungus.

  • Certain Medical Conditions: Those with diabetes, a weakened immune system, or a medical condition that causes poor circulation are at a higher risk of contracting nail fungus.
  • Age and Gender: Those who are sixty-five or older are at a higher risk. Research has also shown that women have a higher risk than men.
  • Genetics: It has also been shown to be hereditary, so if you have a close family member who gets nail fungus infections regularly, you are at a higher risk.
  • Injury or Cut: Factors such as an injury around or even on your nail can make you more susceptible.
  • Certain Environments: Those who spend time in environments that are moist, like swimming pools or outside in wet climates, are more vulnerable.

Prevention Measures

While nail fungus is a common condition, it’s important to do what you can to prevent it from affecting you. Prevention is more about remaining focused on maintaining good hygiene both at home and in public. If you frequent the nail salon often, ask about their policies regarding sanitation.

While they should disinfect their establishment regularly, they should also open up newly disinfected tools in front of you. As for regular nail care at home, keep your nails and toes trimmed and clean them often. Keep your hands and feet dry as much as possible as fungus grows in wet and warm environments. Lastly, keep your feet covered whenever you can. Your socks and shoes are an extra barrier to keep out unwanted fungus and infection.

Treatment Options

At least one in four people have nail fungus that does not go away on its own. With that, medical intervention is necessary to treat your nails and to stop the spread. If left untreated, nail fungus can fully damage your nails and become even more difficult to treat. The most effective treatment for nail fungus is laser treatment. It can get rid of your nail fungus entirely, as the laser is so powerful it can penetrate infected nails without destroying the good nail tissue that’s left. Some doctors may suggest oral or topical treatments. However, topical treatments don’t prevent the fungus from returning, and many of the oral treatments can cause liver damage.

The laser treatment is fast, easy, and pain-free. The entire process takes less than thirty minutes, and you won’t experience any pain during or after the procedure. You can get back to your regular day after, so there’s no downtime. The benefit of the procedure is all ten nails are treated at once, so you don’t have to worry about infection from one nail to another.

Laser Treatment in Silverdale and Sequim

If you have an issue with nail fungus that you can’t get rid of, contact the experts at Cole Aesthetic Center. Dr. Cole is board-certified and experienced in nail fungus treatment. Contact the office today for a consultation!

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