Fungal nail infection
Diagnose & advice 2020
If you are suffering from a fungal nail infection. Chances are you have had it for a long time, tried some home remedies or products and failed.
Treating a fungal nail infection correctly isn't easy!
On this page we will outline all do's and dont's for succesful fungal nail treatment.
Curious? Keep on reading
Everything you need to know about fungal nail infections:
- What causes fungal nail infection?
- Fungal nail symptoms
- General Practitioner (GP)
- NHS information
- Fungal nail pictures
- Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.)
- The secret to succesful fungal nail treatment
What causes fungal nail infections?
How did I get this nail infection?Fungal nail infections are very common. There are several ways your fungal nail infection could have started. Many simple precautions can be taken to prevent infections on your feet, hands and nails. These precautions, combined with good personal hygiene and being aware of the risks of fungal nail infection, will surely help in minimising (future) infections.
Even though it is very hard to determine exactly what could have caused your fungal nail infection. We will summarise some of the most common causes of fungal nail infections.
Fungal nail infection symptoms
What does fungal nail look like?In order to prevent a large spread of the nail fungus infection (med.: onychomycosis or tinea unguium), it is particularly important that you do not hestitate to take action in order to prevent the spread of the fungal infection to other nails.
As a rule, fungal nail infection can only be diagnosed at a very late stage. At the beginning it is difficult to recognise and just as difficult to treat. But don't wait for a mild case to get worse.
But when can you be sure that it is actually fungal nail infection? Below we have a selection of pictures of nail infections. You can recognize a fungal nail infection by the following symptoms:
- Discoloration: white, yellow or brownish
- Loose nail: debris building up under the nail
- Brittle or crumbly
- Distorted in shape
- Bad, foul smell
Start treatment as soon as you discover a nail infection! If you are unsure your nails are infected or simply damaged, always visit your GP. He can diagnose a fungal infection safely!
Read about all treatments in our blog article: "Fungal nail treatment"
Diagnose & medicine for nail fungusNail infections can only be properly diagnosed by harvesting a sample of the infected nails and sending it to a laboratory. There they can determine whether you are suffering from a fungus, mould or yeast infection.
After the correct diagnose has been made, your GP or specialist can advice you on which fungal nail treatment is best for your fungal nail infection.
Treatment choices are often determined by budget, medical condition and personal preference.Which treatment is best for you, is mostly subject to your treatment loyalty. Every treatment needs to be followed by the letter to be succesful.
Professional fungal nail therapyIf you have severe fungal nail infection, it is adviced to visit a podiatrist for treatment. The podiatrist can get your treatment started by cleaning and preparing the nails for topical treatment with fungal nail solution.
During your home treatment a regular visit to the podiatrist is adviced, if your budget allows this ofcourse.Treatments by a podiatrist are usually not covered by the NHS and can be very costly. Prices typically range from £30.00 - 55.00 per 30 minute treatment.
NHS information and tips about fungal nailThe NHS provides a wealth of information and advice to UK consumers and patients. They have very useful information on their website about fungal nail infections, diagnose and symptoms. Please find a summary of this advice below.
- treat athlete's foot as soon as possible to avoid it spreading to nails
- keep your feet clean and dry
- wear clean socks every day
- wear flip-flops in showers at the gym or pool
- throw out or treat shoes
- do not wear shoes that make your feet hot and sweaty
- do not share towels
- do not wear other people's shoes
- do not share nail clippers or scissors
For more information, please visit the NHS website nhs.uk
Examples of fungal nail on toes and fingers
Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.)
Your questions, our answers
How long does it take until the fungal nail is completely healed?
The duration of treatment of nails depends very much on the severity of the infection, the stage of your nail's destruction and the chosen treatment method. Mild infections can heal completely within a few months. You can expect a year or more for more severe infections. In any case, treatment with fungal nail polish is recommended for fast recovery.
Does fungal nail heal by itself over time?
No. You won't get rid of your fungal nail infection without treatment.
Which remedy works best against fungal nail?
Scientific studies show that the best and most effective method for nail fungus so far is the treatment with a topical fungal nail solution. In addition, long-term care of nails and shoes is highly recommended.
Can I cover a fungal nail with a regular nail polish?
No! Do not use regular nail polish during the entire treatment. If you want to use nail polish during treatment, you should only use special breathable nail polish. This will prevent further nail damage.
Are athlete's foot and nail fungus related?
Yes! In most cases, fungal nail infection is a result of untreated athlete's foot (foot fungus). Therefore, treat every small form of athlete's foot directly to prevent infection of your nails. Protect yourself against athlete's foot by always keeping socks, shoes and feet clean and dry.
How dangerous is nail fungus?
You shouldn't take nail fungus lightly. Not only does it look unattractive, it can also have more serious health consequences. You should absolutely prevent the spread of the fungus to other parts of the body. The longer you delay a treatment, the more complex it becomes.
What happens if I treat nails that are not affected by nail fungus?
Basically, if you are unsure, see a doctor. This is necessary for prescription drugs anyway. Fungal nail solution, such as Protectair can be used safely at any time. Above all, they prevent reinfection too.
Is fungal nail contagious?
Fungal nail infection is very contagious and does not heal itself! If left untreated, the infection can easily spread and infect other nails or even other people! Be sure to always wear flip-flops or sandals in public places such as the swimming pool, sauna, or gym.
The secret to succesful fungail nail treatment
The reason your fungal nail doens't healIt does not matter which treatment you chose to get rid of your nail fungus and get beautiful nails. None of these treatments work if you don't follow 1 simple rule:
To succesfully treat nail fungus, you need to prevent reinfection during treatment at all cost!
That's it? Yes! It's THAT simple.
To beat nail fungus you need to:
- Isolate the infection
- Chose a proven treatment method that works for you
- Prevent reinfection at all cost
- Treat consistently until the entire infection has grown out