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Fungal Infections


Onychomycosis pronounced – on-i-ko-mi-KO-sis – is the term for a fungus that attacks the finger and/or toe nails.  It is a disease found so frequently that it is considered the most common of this type of infections.  Both toe nails and fingernails can be infected with the fungus, but toe nails are more frequently infected and the more difficult to treat.  There are four types of the fungus depending on which part, sequence of infection and causative agent of the fungus.


Many times a fungus infection will be passed and the unlucky recipient will not even realize it until symptoms appear.  The first sign will be a spot, many times either red or yellow, that appears on the tip of the nail.  Shortly the nail will start to degenerate, becoming thickened, crumbly and distorted in shape.  The nail color will change becoming opaque and dull.  As the nail thickens debris from the infection will lodge under the nail.  Fungus nail infections are rather easy to identify when it comes to the finger.  But the toe nail is another problem.  As a person grows older, and their sight diminishes, perhaps they cannot see their toes.  If they also suffer from a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes or circulatory problems the possibility of a fungus is heightened.


The bug that is the usual culprit is called dermatophytes. There are quite a few fungus listed under that umbrella.  This includes several types of molds and allergic antigens.  We have fungus on our bodies almost at any time.  Whether they infect us depends on if they can gain an entrance to our tissues.


Over the counter medications are available to target your fungus. As you have probably had it for a while, especially that of the toes, a cure will not be immediate.  But it is curable; patience is needed during the treatment period. The best remedies so far are natural products found usually on line.

Prevention and Psychological Considerations

The foot area is the best area to support an infection.  It has those three properties’ that are necessary for an infection to thieve.  The foot is warm, dark and moist.  And as noted previously, if we are dealing with an older patient with reduced eye sight the fungus may be allowed to fester before treatment is commenced. Toe nails should be kept short and neat and if the patient does have vision problems then it is best done by another.  The use of cotton and wool socks will help keep the feet dry.  Synthetic materials do not absorb moisture as does the natural fibers. Rotate shoes frequently.  The psychological trauma of a fungus infection of the finger nail carries with it more psychological trauma.  Your hand is a reflection of personal hygiene. One of the causative factors is the long emersion of hands in water.  If this is necessary then use of rubber gloves is advised. Infections can be acquired through a manicurist and if you have one you should check out the salons for its sanitary procedures.  Allergies to some antigens, including nail polish, can be the causative agent.  Artificial finger nails have been named as one of the chief reasons that woman obtain fungal infections.  And lastly, women don’t think that trying to cover your finger nail infection with nail polish will help.  Actually anything put on your nails, besides medication will produce the reverse results.

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