A fungal infection of your toenails can range from mild to severe depending upon how long the fungi have been feasting underneath your nails. You can often treat a mild infection with over the counter remedies, but if the infection returns, you will need to see your foot doctor for a prescription strength antifungal medicine.
Some of the early signs that you have a fungal toenail infection include the following:
- White lines or spots appear on the toenail
- Your toenails may become slightly thicker and more brittle
- The tops of your toenail can become softer and a bit powdery feeling
A mild case of toenail fungus can often be eradicated by liberally applying tea tree oil, which is a natural fungicide. If the fungal toenail infection continues to progress the symptoms will become more severe and more aggressive treatment involving debridement or complete toenail removal may be necessary.
Some of the signs of a more advanced fungal toenail infection include the following:
- More severe discoloration of brown, gray and yellow
- The toenail lifts away from the nail bed
- Pronounced ridges are evident on the toenail surface
- Extreme thickening of the nail will occur
- The skin around the nail will become more scaly and powdery
- The fungi emit a terrible odor
- You experience pain in your toenails from wearing shoes, walking or standing
People who have systemic illnesses such as diabetes, a compromised immune system, nerve damage, and poor blood circulation have an increased risk of developing fungal toenail infections.
If you are concerned that your fungal toenail infection has gotten out of control, it is essential that you see your foot care professional for the proper diagnosis and treatment. Call Syracuse Podiatry located in East Syracuse, New York. Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico, Dr. Kathleen Pyatak-Hugar, and their staff will help you diagnose and treat your foot or ankle condition. Call 315-446-3668 or make an appointment online today.