Toenail fungus, otherwise known as Onychomycosis, is a type of disease known to infect your nails. The microscopic fungi spread easily and swiftly on the moist environment your foot provides. Typically, the infection starts with a yellow or whitish spot buildup under the tip of your nails. As it worsens, the nail can become brittle and will eventually die if left untreated.
Though not a serious disease condition, nail fungus can cause self-image disturbance to the person afflicted with it. Early recognition of the symptoms and aggressive treatment should therefore be provided to avoid worsening of the condition.
Knowing the most visible nail fungus symptoms will help you recognize the first manifestations of the disease so you may be treated at the soonest possible time.
The degree of severity may vary from person-to person. If one has sought immediate medical treatment, then the progression of symptoms can be hindered. To lessen the gravity of the problem, preventive or supportive measures must be initiated. This includes keeping your feet clean and dry at all times. It also involves avoidance of warm environment as the latter promotes the growth of fungus on your nails.
Early Signs of Nail Fungus
Fungal infection can affect the fingernails and toenails. However, the condition is more
prevalent in the toenails since the feet are more exposed to moisture. Toenail fungus is also more difficult to treat because the nails on your toes grow slower than your fingernails. It is also important to remember that the condition can reappear at any time. Compliance to the treatment is therefore necessary to achieve permanent fungal relief.
It is essential to note the early signs of the disease. Once you spot any of the symptoms of nail fungus listed below, visit your doctors and comply with the recommended treatment immediately.
- Whitish or yellowish discoloration of the nails. Usually, the big or small toe is the first to manifest this symptom.
- Accumulation of debris under the toenails. Doctors commonly call this condition a “toe jam”.
- Lost of shine or luster on the toenails. Typically, a healthy nail would look shiny even without nail polish on it. If it begins to lose its luster, then you could probably be infected with fungus.
- Thickened nails. Those infected with this condition would begin to notice thickening of their nails. The fungus causes the nails to become hard and solidified to look at.
Late Signs of Nail Fungus
The symptoms become progressive if infection is not controlled. One would begin to manifest the late symptoms of the disease which include the following:
- Brittle, crumbled, or broken nails. The toenails would usually appear uneven on the edges.
- Distorted shape of the nail. Toenail fungus causes severe alteration in the appearance of your nails. The nails may even come off if treatment is not given.
- Black or greenish discoloration. At first, the nails would turn white or yellow in color. But in due course, it can appear black or green.
- Separation from the nail bed. This condition is scientifically known as onycholysis. It may or may not involve pain, but it definitely is unsightly to look at.
Knowing the signs and symptoms of a disease is an important part of the treatment. As soon as you recognize the symptoms stated above, visit your doctors straight away. After all, prevention is the number one key to achieving a healthier body.