What are Nail Infections
Nail infections, also known as “onychomycosis” are fungal infections that affect fingernails or toenails, and cause them to be discolored, thick, and cracked. It’s most common in toenails, but can affect any nails.
Common symptoms of nail infections include:
- Discolored nail (white, black, yellow, or green)
- Thick nails
- Distortions or changes in the nail
- Pain or discomfort, especially when pressure is applied to the nail of affected toe or finger.
There are various fungi that can cause a nail infection, which the most common one being dermatophyte.
Yeast and molds can also cause nail infection. Nail infections can affect anyone, but it’s most common in older adults.
Antifungal treatment is needed to treat nail infections. These can be as oral medications, medicated nail polish, or nail cream, and are prescribed by a doctor.
In certain cases, surgery may be needed to remove the nail, as some fungi don’t respond to medications.
When to See a Medical Doctor
If you’re experiencing any symptoms of a nail infection, particularly pain or discomfort, speak to a doctor. They’ll be able to diagnose the infection, and prescribe the appropriate medication and treatment needed to clear it up.