(NC) You wouldn’t be alone if you are more at ease with your feet well covered. If the reason is an unsightly toenail fungus infection, covering up the evidence is certainly an option but hardly an effective long-term option. While appearances are important, the cover-up can only last so long and it stands to reason that when your feet are in good shape, you will have a leg up on your overall health.
There are many activities that make having healthy toes highly desirable. If you take part in yoga, Pilates, karate, gymnastics, dance or swimming; or if you have plans for a beach holiday; unsightly toenail fungal infections are not only contagious and hard to get rid of, they can be uncomfortable and embarrassing.
What does a toenail fungus infection look like? According to Quebec dermatologist Dr. Loukia Mitsos, when a nail develops a fungal infection, it typically turns white or yellow, all or part of the nail becomes damaged and debris may accumulate under the nail. As the infection progresses, the nail may thicken, crumble and gradually fall off. It is not surprising that according to a Leger survey, 80% of Canadians claimed that having nice looking toes is important to them and 85% considered toenail infections to be extremely unappealing. The same study showed that nearly two-thirds of the Canadians surveyed who have toenail fungal infections claim to be embarrassed by the condition and 50% avoid going barefoot or exposing their toes.
“My advice to individuals who think they have a toenail fungus infection is to see their dermatologist,” says Dr. Mitsos. “The advantage to treating the condition quickly is to avoid permanent damage to the nail and spreading the infection to other toes.” Dr. Mitsos encourages her patients to stick with their recommended prescription treatment when it comes to seeing results and have realistic expectations. “The most commonly prescribed treatment for a toenail fungus infection is 10% efinaconazole or Jublia,” she says. “And be patient, a clear, healthy nail will take time to fully grow back.”
For more information speak to your dermatologist and visit www.nailfungus.ca.