Toenail fungus is a common condition that occurs from the overgrowth of fungi in, on, or under the nail. You can usually detect it from a visible discoloration on the nail, a brittle or thickened part of the nail, or an abnormal odor coming from the infected nail. If you notice any of these signs, you might want to seek a professional for treatment.
Fungi thrive and grow in wet, moist environments such as gyms, swimming pools, showers, or humid weather conditions. However, the growth of fungus is not limited to these circumstances as they can spread in dry conditions as well. Fungal infections affect toenails more commonly than fingernails because your toes are usually confined to your shoes, where they’re in a warm, moist environment. There are ways to actively prevent fungal infections, though:
- Keep your nails well-trimmed
- Frequently wash your hands and feet
- Dry your feet thoroughly after showing, swimming, etc.
- Wear breathable socks and shoes that minimize moisture
- Avoid being barefoot in public places
- Discard old, dirty shoes and socks
- Use antifungal sprays or powders
Toenail fungus does not go away by itself. If you show any signs of a fungal infection, please see a doctor! Follow the above tips to actively prevent toenail fungus-and avoid the risk of spreading it around further.
For more information on toenail fungus: