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Discoloured Toe Nails

Understanding Fungal Toenails

At Happy Feet Podiatry, we believe in empowering our patients with knowledge. If you’ve noticed changes in your toenails and suspect it could be a fungal infection, you’re not alone. Fungal toenail infections, while common, can be persistent and sometimes challenging to treat. Here’s what you need to know:

**What is a Fungal Toenail Infection?**

A fungal toenail infection, medically known as onychomycosis, occurs when fungi invade the nail or the underlying skin (nail bed). These microorganisms thrive in warm, moist environments, making shoes a perfect habitat.

**Symptoms to Look Out For**

While each individual might experience variations, common signs of a fungal toenail infection include:

– Discoloration (yellow, brown, or white)

– Thickening or distortion of the nail

– Brittle, crumbly, or ragged edges

– Foul odor

– Separation of the nail from the nail bed

– Occasional pain

Common Causes & Risk Factors

  1. Exposure to Fungi: Public places like swimming pools, gyms, and shower rooms can harbor fungi.
  2. Aging: As we age, nails can become drier and more brittle, making them more susceptible to infections.
  3. Trauma: Even small injuries to the toenail can make them more prone to fungal invasion.
  4. Reduced Blood Circulation: Conditions that reduce blood flow to the feet, such as diabetes, increase the risk.
  5. Weakened Immune System: Those with a compromised immune system might be more susceptible.
  6. Shoe Environment: Shoes that trap moisture can create an ideal environment for fungal growth.

Why Treat Fungal Toenail Infections?

While some might consider it a mere cosmetic concern, untreated fungal infections can:

– Spread to other toenails, skin, or even one’s fingernails

– Cause pain or discomfort, especially during walking or wearing shoes

– Lead to further complications, especially for those with diabetes or weakened immune systems

– Can lead to permanently damaged nails

Treatment at Happy Feet Podiatry

Traditional treatments often involve topical medications or oral antifungals. However, these might not always be effective and can have side effects. At Happy Feet Podiatry, we offer the advanced 1064 yag laser treatment, which directly targets and eliminates the fungi without the side effects commonly associated with oral medications.

Your Next Steps

If you suspect you have a fungal toenail infection or have tried other treatments without success, it’s time to consider a more innovative approach. At Happy Feet Podiatry, we’re dedicated to providing state-of-the-art treatments that are clinically proven and evidence based.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation, and together, let’s take the first step towards restoring the health and beauty of your toenails.

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