Nail fungus, or onychomycosis as it is known medically, is a condition that is commonly found on nails of people of any age, although primarily it is seen in older adults, it can be seen in children as well.. It usually begins as a white or yellow spot under the nail that progressively takes over the whole nail. It appears more commonly on toe nails than on finger nails because this type of fungus likes to live in an environment that is warm, dark, moist, as is commonly found inside of shoes and also where there is reduced blood flow. Men tend to develop nail fungus more often than women.
Nails that are infected with fungus will show signs of being:
• Brittle, crumbly or ragged
• Distorted in shape
• Dark in color
A few risk factors for developing nail fungus are being diabetic, having a nail injury, being immune-compromised, living or working in humid conditions, having poor circulation, receiving chemotherapy, wearing tight fitting shoes, having poor hygiene, and having other fungal infections like athlete’s foot.
There are different ways to treat nail fungus and they range from the simple home remedy to the more intensive that is prescribed by a physician. Home remedies can include applying a vapo rub, tea tree oil, trimming and filing the nails, and over the counter nail creams and ointments. The more intense methods prescribed and administered by a physician includes oral antifungal medications, medicated nail polish, nail removal and laser light therapy.
Podiatrists are doctors who specialize in all conditions of the feet. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist at Jamaica Hospital, please call 718-206-7001.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.