The microbes that cause a fungal toenail infection can cause the nail to become discolored, thick, and brittle. There is often a terrible odor coming from the infected toenails as the fungi feed on your skin and sweat. The best way to prevent a fungal toenail infection is to avoid initial contact with the microbes and keep your shoes and feet clean and dry to deprive them of their preferred environment.
You can prevent fungal toenail infections by practicing the following:
- Keep your feet clean and as dry as possible—Wash and dry your feet daily. Allow your footwear to completely dry out between wearing to get rid of the moisture that fungi prefer.
- Apply antifungal sprays and powders—Can be applied directly on your feet and in your shoes to kill any bacteria and fungi.
- Cut your toenails correctly (a little long and straight across)—Not only will this help avoid painful ingrown toenails, but it will also help to keep microbes from spreading under your toenails and causing the infection.
- Wear shoes and socks that allow your feet to breathe—Wear socks that are breathable and that wick away moisture. Shoes and sneakers made with breathable fibers like Gore-Tex will allow moisture to evaporate more effectively.
- Keep your feet protected from microbes when using public facilities—Always wear shower shoes or sandals when using public locker rooms and shower areas where microbes thrive. Use medicated powder or spray on your feet and inside your shoes to kill any stray microbes.
If you are experiencing brittle and yellowing toenails with a funky smell, you probably have a fungal toenail infection, so be sure to see your foot doctor for the proper care. Call Syracuse Podiatry, located in East Syracuse, New York. Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico, and Dr. Donal M. Erickson, and their staff will help you diagnose and treat your foot or ankle condition. Call 315-446-3668 or make an appointment online today.