FUNGAL NAIL TREATMENT
Fungal nail infections can be persistent and frustrating to get rid of. Also known as onychomycosis, they present as white spots on the surface of toenails, yellow/brown tracks at the end of the nail, and similar tracks extending up from the cuticle or crumbling at the nail edges.
Severe infections can cause total destruction or deformity of the nail bed and may spread to other toenails or to the skin of the foot leading to athlete’s foot.
Fungal nail infections are very common, particularly in active adults and older people. Most people find they spread very slowly and are completely pain-free. However, you should pursue fungal nail treatment as soon as possible to limit the spread.
Your podiatrist will determine whether you are suffering from one of the following forms of fungal infection:
- White superficial onychomycosis
- Distal lateral subungual onychomycosis
- Proximal lateral subungual onychomycosis
- Total dystrophic onychomycosis
What causes a fungal nail?
Onychomycosis is caused by fungal organisms. A few types of fungus can cause infections but the most common is dermatophyte. Some types of mould and yeast can also cause them.
Fungal infections thrive in warm, damp conditions so you’re more likely to develop one if your feet get hot and sweaty. Often, athletes or other people who wear trainers for a long time are more prone to fungal nails.
How to treat fungal nail infections
There are several methods of fungal nail treatment you can try.
The most common nail treatments include:
- Antifungal cream: you can apply this topically to kill the fungus and clear the symptoms. It can take a while to work — sometimes up to 12 months.
- Oral antifungal drugs: many people find that antifungal drugs clear the infection more quickly than topical creams. You’ll usually need to take the medication for six to 12 weeks but may not see results for a few months once the new nail has grown fully.
- Antifungal nail polish: another treatment option is to apply antifungal nail varnish daily in seven-day cycles. Each week, you can remove the built-up polish with alcohol, then start again. This is a slow treatment you may need to use for 12 months or more.
- Nail-softening cream: in some cases, you may be offered a nail-softening cream. After applying this for two weeks to soften the nail, your podiatrist will carefully scrape off the infected areas.
It’s also worth taking some preventative measures to reduce your risk of a fungal nail infection:
- Dry your feel well after showering
- Change your socks every day
- Get rid of old shoes or trainers
- Don’t share towels or shoes
- Avoid sharing nail scissors or toenail clippers
- Wear shoes that allow your feet to breathe
- Wear flipflops or sliders in the gym or swimming pool showers and changing areas
Which fungal nail treatment is right for me?
It’s a good idea to speak to a podiatrist to work out which onychomycosis treatment is best for you. Not all treatments are suitable for everyone — for instance, some people should avoid oral antifungal medication due to the potential side effects. As such, it’s important to discuss your options with a medical professional.
Fungal nail treatment from City Foot Health
If you’re looking for advice and effective nail fungus treatment in the UK, our London podiatrists can help.
At City Foot Health, our experts have extensive knowledge of fungal nail infections and the appropriate treatments. They’ll be able to identify nail fungus and exclude any other conditions that may have caused nail deformity, discolouration or crumbling — for example, disease processes or trauma.
With years of experience in treating nail fungus of all severities, we can recommend the best treatment for you for safe, effective, and long-lasting results.
Our well-equipped, modern office follows all correct procedures to ensure you have the highest-quality, hygienic foot care possible.
Fungal nail treatment isn't something to fear, so get in touch with us today to book an appointment today.