Fungal Nail can be a bit embarrassing and nobody wants to put up with it for long. Here’s a helpful guide to treat and prevent Fungal Nails and keep them looking healthy.
What is fungal Nail & What causes it?
A fungal nail infection occurs from the overgrowth of fungi in, under, or on the nail. Fungi thrive in warm, moist environments, so this type of environment can cause them to naturally overpopulate. The same fungi that cause jock itch, athlete’s foot, and ringworm can cause nail infections.
Fungi that are already present in or on your body can also cause nail infections. If you have come in contact with someone else who has a fungal infection, it may have spread to you.
Fungal infections affect toenails more commonly than fingernails because your toes are usually confined to your shoes, where they’re in a warm, moist environment.
There is also an increased risk if you:
- have diabetes
- have a disease that causes poor circulation
- are over age 65
- wear artificial nails
- swim in a public swimming pool
- have a nail injury
- have a skin injury around the nail
- have moist fingers or toes for an extended time
- have a weakened immune system
- wear closed-toe shoes, such as tennis shoes or boots
How do I know if I have a fungal nail Infection?
Initially there may be no symptoms at all but over time you may end up with one or more of the following Symptoms:
- Your nails are painful
- Discolouration of the nail (e.g. white, brown, yellow or green nails)
- They are growing thicker or thinner than normal
- White spots on the nail
- The nail has changed shape
- The nail is broken or it has rough edges
- Your nail smells bad
Ok, I have one or more of these symptoms. How do I treat this?
There are several treatments available over the counter at your local pharmacy. The most common of these is Curanail (also known as Loceryl). This works by penetrating the nail to reach the fungal infection and kills it to prevent any further determination of the nail. Whilst removing the infection, Curanail also protects the nail from spreading and most importantly re-infection. With continuous treatment, Curanail continues to kill the infection for up to 7 days per application.
The fungal infection has gone. Can I stop using the product?
While the infection may have appeared to be gone, there will inevitably be some remainder of the infection. It is therefore best to continue using Curanail for up to 7 days after the infection has visibly disappeared.
To also help remove the infection we would also recommend using an antifungal cream with the Curanail. This will work with the nail lacquer to protect the rest of your nails from the infection spreading.
How can I prevent this in the future?
Keep your nails short – If your nails get too long, dirt and bacteria can collect under the nails and can result in infection. Also clean your nail cutter or trimmer before and after each use.
Clean your nails well – Ensure that your nails are thoroughly washed and cleaned when you are in the bath or shower. A nail brush may also help to remove trapped dirt and bacteria under the nail.
Dry your nails. Keep them away from moisture – Humid environments, exercise and non-breathable socks and shoes causes sweat and is perfect for an infection to develop. Make sure you wear breathable socks and shoes that are also not too tight to reduce the risk of infection.
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