Fungal nail infection is very common and can affect 1 in 10 people. Known by its medical name, Distal Subungual Onychomycosis (DSO) is the most common type of fungal nail infection. DSO infects the skin under the end of the nail (nail bed) and in the nail. You will notice that the nail may end up crumbling and splitting, and separate from the skin. The nail often turns yellow or brown.
Another type of fungal nail infection is White Superficial Onychomycosis (WSO). WSO can be seen in the top layer of the nail, initially forming white spots on the surface. After some time, the surface of the nail may become covered with a crumbly, chalky powder. However, the nail will not thicken and separate from the skin.
Both conditions need Fungal nail treatment even at an early stage to avoid severe infection as that can make the nail become painful, making walking or wearing shoes uncomfortable.
What causes Fungal Nail Infection?
Even if you take care of your feet on a regular basis, you might still catch fungal nail infection as the funguses that cause fungal nail infection are highly contagious and grow and spread in moist, warm environments and what your feet get exposed to day to day are perfect conditions for the infection to grow. For example, walking barefoot in communal swimming pools, showers or gyms. Not keeping your feet clean and drying your toes properly, wearing shoes that cause your feet to get hot and sweaty. Also, if you have athlete’s foot, this can easily spread to the toenail and give you a fungal nail infection or even if you have a damaged toenail, this can increase the risk.
How can you prevent Fungal Nail infection?
Unfortunately it is impossible to eliminate the risk of developing fungal nail infection, but there are simple things you can do to reduce the risk of getting infected.