Understanding Fungal Nail Infections and Best Treatment Options

When it comes to the many conditions that can affect your feet, fungal infections in your toenails are among the most common.

When it comes to the many conditions that can affect your feet, fungal infections in your toenails are among the most common. While these infections aren’t necessarily dangerous, they can pose serious cosmetic concerns as your nails discolor and crumble. Not to mention, fungal infections are notoriously tough conditions to get rid of.

Our team of podiatric specialists offers several solutions to battle fungal infections in your toenails, including an advanced laser solution that makes quick work of the fungus.

Here’s a look at the different types of fungal nail infections and, more importantly, what we can do about them.

Fungal nail infections in detail

There are four main types of fungal nail infections, including:

1. Distal subungual onychomycosis (DSO)

This fungal infection is far and away from the most common, and it’s the same fungi that are responsible for athlete’s foot. DSO typically invades the nail bed beneath your nail, eventually leading to yellowish and thickened toenails that are very brittle. In advanced cases, the nail separates from the nail bed.

2. White superficial onychomycosis (WSO)

This type of fungal infection affects only the surface of your nail, leading to white spots that may overtake your entire nail.

3. Candida onychomycosis

This condition is less common and stems from a yeast infection. Candida onychomycosis can affect both your nail and your surrounding skin and lead to a separation of your nail from your nail bed.

4. Proximal subungual onychomycosis (PSO)

This condition is typically found in those with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and affects the skin at the base of your nail.

It’s worth emphasizing that most fungal infections that we see are caused by distal subungual onychomycosis.

Treating toenail fungus

When it comes to treating toenail fungus, the rule of thumb is that early treatment is best. Toenail fungus is typically progressive and usually starts out as white spots on your nails. At this early juncture, we can prescribe antifungal medications.

In most cases, however, the fungus spreads quickly and, before you know it, your entire nail is compromised. In these cases, we recommend the most advanced therapy available — GenesisPlus® laser toenail fungus treatment. With this innovative laser technology, we deliver light energy into your toenail, which destroys the fungus without damaging your healthy tissue.

The laser treatment is noninvasive and takes us less than 30 minutes to complete. Most patients are perfectly comfortable during the procedure and there’s no downtime afterward, which means you’re free to get on with your day.

With the fungus effectively destroyed, newer, healthier nails will regrow, returning your feet to a more aesthetically pleasing appearance.

If you’d like to get rid of your toenail fungus, once and for all, contact us today to set up an appointment.