Toenail fungus is unsightly and could be painful as it worsens. If you have a fungal toenail, visit the highly skilled team at Montgomery Podiatry in Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, for the latest toenail fungus treatments. You can avoid discomfort and restore your nail to health with help from the practice’s outstanding podiatrists. Discover how by calling Montgomery Podiatry or booking an appointment online today.
Toenail fungus develops when fungal spores infect the cuticle (skin covering) at the bottom of the nail. As the fungus spreads, your toenail thickens and becomes discolored. It may be increasingly uncomfortable or even painful. Without treatment, toenail fungus can cause the nail to soften and crumble.
Human feet provide a perfect environment for toenail fungus, which breeds in a dark, warm, moist atmosphere. Most people’s feet spend the majority of their time encased in hot, sweaty socks and/or shoes, providing an ideal fungal breeding ground.
If you’re healthy and treat it promptly, toenail fungus is more of a nuisance and an aesthetic concern than a significant health problem. However, it does pose a risk to anyone with diabetes or circulatory disorders like peripheral artery disease (PAD) because they’re vulnerable to bacterial infections in their feet.
Bacteria can quickly multiply in the soft tissues under the damaged nail. An infection could lead to ulceration and/or tissue death in the foot, a serious problem for people with diabetes and other chronic diseases.
To ensure you don’t develop complications from toenail fungus, always visit Montgomery Podiatry if you notice any toenail discoloration.
To diagnose toenail fungus, the Montgomery Podiatry team examines your feet and asks about your symptoms.
Toenail discoloration isn’t just a symptom of toenail fungus — it also occurs after an injury and in people with vitamin deficiencies, the autoimmune skin disorder psoriasis, and other foot problems.
To confirm the cause of nail discoloration, your podiatrist collects a toenail sample for lab testing.
Several treatments can help with toenail fungus. Your podiatrist might prescribe an oral antifungal medication you take by mouth or a topical antifungal cream that you rub into the nail to kill the fungus.
Laser (light) energy can also destroy toenail fungus. The concentrated laser beams create oxygen in the toe that kills the fungus. Other treatments are available that also improve the nail’s appearance.
These noninvasive treatments are effective for most patients, so very few people require surgery for toenail fungus.
If you have an unsightly or crumbling toenail, visit Montgomery Podiatry for prompt, effective treatment. Call the office or schedule an appointment online today.