Summer will be here before you know it. Will you be ready to walk around in sandals or other open-toed shoes? If you’re dreading the thought of it because of foot fungus, you’re not alone. Yes, toenail fungus is unsightly, but at least it’s treatable.
Our foot experts Jennifer Decker, DPM, and Lincoln V. Lowe, DPM, at Wiregrass Podiatry in Enterprise and Dothan, Alabama, treat a variety of foot conditions, including toenail fungus. Getting the problem addressed now means you can slip into your flip-flops or sandals with confidence come summertime.
Fungus thrives in warm and moist environments. So if you sweat a lot in your socks and shoes, you could be setting yourself up for trouble. Fungal infections can cause serious damage to your feet and toenails. As the fungi multiply, they can cause your toenail to yellow, darken, harden, and flake away.
Your chances of contracting toenail fungus increase if you:
- Walk around moist locker rooms barefoot
- Have had previous fungal infections or athlete’s foot
- Experience poor circulation
- Share socks, shoes, or nail clippers with others
- Sweat a lot and wear your socks and shoes for long periods of time
Nail fungus treatment and prevention
The treatment and prevention of toenail fungus is basically the same no matter what type of fungus you have. However, it’s important to talk to Dr. Decker or Dr. Lowe if you have a persistent, recurring, or serious infection.
How to treat nail fungus
One of our doctors will assess the severity of your condition and determine the best treatment option. Treatments may include:
- Medicated nail polish
- Oral antifungal medication
- Topical antifungal medicine that you put on your feet
In severe cases, a nail may need to be removed. If you do require nail removal, your nail should grow back healthy once the underlying skin is treated. This can take 12 to 18 months.
How to prevent nail fungal infections
It’s best to prevent serious fungal infections in the first place. Follow these tips for good hygiene and foot care:
- Use only your personal pedicure set
- Disinfect pedicure tools regularly
- Wear breathable shoes
- Change socks and shoes after sweating
- Wear flip-flops or shower shoes in common areas
- Wash and dry your feet regularly
If you develop a foot problem, it’s best to let us take a look as soon as possible. That way we can catch a fungal infection early. Remember, the sooner we treat it, the sooner it’ll go away so you can wear sandals and enjoy summer.
Make an appointment with one of our caring and experienced doctors by using our online booking tool or by calling 334-494-8200 today.