What Causes Nail Fungus?

Nail fungus is a common and often unsightly condition that affects your toenails. It’s more common in people as they get older, affecting 75% of those over 60 and 25% of the general population.

Toenail fungus, also called onychomycosis, affects the way your foot looks. But it can also be a painful condition. Symptoms include yellow or discolored toenails that are thick with brittle, jagged edges. 

Whether your nail fungus causes pain or just embarrassment, you should have it examined and treated by a foot care specialist. Our experienced podiatrists at Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers, located in Lake Ridge and Stafford, Virginia, share information about what causes nail fungus and how you can prevent it.

Nail fungus risks and causes

Nail fungus is an infection caused by fungal organisms. It can affect anyone, but nail fungus is more common in older people. As you age, your nails tend to become dry and brittle and often split as a result. These cracks make it easier for fungi to get inside your nail bed, which can lead to an infection. 

Additionally, a weakened immune system and poor circulation put you at higher risk of developing nail fungus. However, people of any age can develop nail fungus. Here are some other risk factors:

Nail fungus prevention tips

Fortunately, there are easy ways to reduce your risk of developing this nail affliction. While there’s no way to prevent it altogether, you can increase your chances of avoiding it if you follow these tips:

Another place people can get nail fungus is at a nail salon. Make sure the ones you frequent sterilize their tools regularly, clean after every customer, and keep a pristine establishment. Also, check that they are licensed by your state’s cosmetology board. 

Our podiatrists at Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers offer a variety of effective treatment options to eliminate nail fungus. Do you suspect you have nail fungus? Call Lake Ridge and Stafford Foot & Ankle Centers to make an appointment for a diagnosis treatment plan today.

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