Health

Nail Fungal Infection: An Overview

Fungi are considered as one of the most widely distributed organisms on the planet (over 144,000 known species), free living in the soil or water.  They live in a parasitic or in a symbiotic relationship with either animals or other plants.

Fungi hold great importance for the environment and medical sector. Some typical common examples of fungi include mushrooms, mildews and molds. However, not all types of fungi are harmful, but some can cause severe suffering for humans and other living organisms.

One pesky example is the type of fungi that attacks toenails. This common fungal infection 

Is common all over the world. It happens when an invading fungus catches and latch onto the human body. 

The infection is successful when the immune system of a human body is too weak to combat the attack. Since fungi reproduce so rapidly, they are difficult to control. One of the most commonly found fungal infections are fingernail and toenail fungal treatment Bristol infections.

Some symptoms 

Mainly, the fungus forms in people who have cracked or ragged toenails on their feet. The fungus is easy to spot because a thick yellow or white substance will appear on the toenail. 

Although it is rare for toenail fungus to cause pain or discomfort, people still want to remove their toenail fungus simply for cosmetic reasons. The fungus is apparent when a white substance will appear on the toenail. 

The fungus infection on your toenails are slow to develop over time and can go unnoticed at first.

The primary symptoms includes the yellowish discoloration at the top of the nail, the darkening or clouding of the nails, white spots. brittle or crumbling nails and sometimes pain in the tops of the toes.

Weak immune system

Men are at a higher risk of developing fungal infections as compared to women. The reason is their poorer immunity as compared to women as the only fighting factor that prevents fungus from occurring in the immune system and women are said to have a stronger immune system than men.

Other conditions, such as psoriasis, can mimic a fungal infection of the nail. Microorganisms such as yeast and bacteria also can infect nails. Knowing the cause of your infection helps determine the best treatment.

Treatment

Treatment for toenail fungus isn’t always needed. Sometimes, self-care and nonprescription products clear up the infection. Talk with your health care provider if your condition doesn’t improve. 

Treatment on toenail fungi depends on the severity of your condition and the type of fungus causing it. It can take months to see results. And even if your nail condition improves, repeat infections are common.

Medications

Oral antifungal medications had proven that they are often not an option for a lot of people with toenail fungi infection. These medications have some adverse nasty side effects.

Likewise, they have potential interactions with other medications that someone may be taking at the same time. Given the fact that toenail fungal infection is such a highly common problem with no readily available cure, newer laser treatment options have generated a huge amount of interest.

Your health care provider may prescribe antifungal drugs that you take by mouth (orally) or apply to the nail.These drugs are often the first choice. One option is to have these drugs help a new nail grow free of infection, slowly replacing the infected part.

Sometimes, depending on your immune system, it can take around four months or even longer to eliminate an infection. Treatment success rates with these drugs appear to be lower in adults over age 65.

Side effects

Oral antifungal drugs can sometimes cause side effects such as rash and liver damage. With the other prescription drugs. , they interfere  with other prescription drugs. 

Your average doctor may need occasional blood tests to check on how you’re doing with these types of drugs. Health care providers may not recommend oral antifungal drugs for people with liver disease or congestive heart failure or those taking certain medications.

Prescription 

The average doctor might recommend a topical anti-fungal cm or oral anti-fungal tablets, but those are not always successful at removing toenail fungus. Plus, those types of medications come with unwanted side effects too.

Oral antifungal medications had proven that they are often not an option for a lot of people with toenail fungi infection. These medications have some adverse nasty side effects.

Likewise, they have potential interactions with other medications that someone may be taking at the same time. Given the fact that toenail fungal infection is such a highly common problem with no readily available cure, newer laser treatment options have generated a huge amount of interest

Medicated nail polish

Your health care provider may prescribe an antifungal nail polish. This is painted on your toenails and surrounding skin once  a day.  

You wipe the piled-on layers clean with alcohol and begin fresh applications after seven days. You may need to use this nail polish daily for almost a year.

The Solution

So far, laser treatment has been found to the best solution for removing toenail fungus. It is a non-invasive and non-surgical procedure with no long-term side effects. In addition, the entire laser procedure only takes about 5 to 10 minutes per foot.

The procedure actually has laser targets the bacteria that causes the fungal infection in your toenails. Once the bacteria is destroyed, the fungal growth stops. Then your toenails can continue to grow out again without being slowed own impeded by fungus.

Treating other nails 

Often the laser will also be passed over nails that do not appear to be infected, as there is still a chance that there may be some infection that is not visible to the eye. 

Each session is very quick and often only takes a few minutes each time. Most people will require three sessions spaced a month apart.

Lower cure rate

Toenail fungus laser treatment can temporarily improve the nail but has a lower cure rate than oral medication.

In severe cases where the infection do not respond to treatment, the infected nail may be surgically removed in order to treat the nail bed. A healthy nail can then grow back. A chronically infected and painful nail may be permanently removed.

Unfortunately, toenail fungus can be stubborn — the recurrence rate can be as high as 40 percent

Not permanent 

In practice, there is no permanent cure for toenail fungus. Theusual recommendation is to have the patients home for at least three laser treatment sessions, one session per month. 

Three sessions should be enough to eliminate the fungus so your toenail can grow out again.

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