As we age, the more likely we are to develop nail fungus. This is due to your nails changing with age and providing the ideal environment for it to take hold.
Your fungus will have taken hold when its affected nail reverts to its standard color, decreases in thickness, exhibits healthy new growth, and has an obvious line between the old pin and the healthy portion.
1. Your nails are growing back
Toenail fungus can be an annoying and often stubborn condition that causes nails to discolor, thicken, brittle, or distorted over time. Luckily, toenail fungus can be treated successfully using over-the-counter or prescription antifungal medication.
Some individuals can successfully treat toenail fungus at home, but many require medical assistance for accurate diagnosis and a treatment plan. Along with traditional nail fungus treatments, you can also take preventive measures to decrease the chances of fungal infection, such as practicing good foot hygiene, keeping feet cool and dry, wearing breathable footwear/socks, and not sharing nail clippers/files.
Once a toenail fungal infection has taken hold, clearing away can be highly challenging. Patients with compromised immune systems will find treatment more complex, so it must be addressed immediately. Otherwise, the infection could spread further and cause more cellulitis-type severe nail infections.
One of the telltale signs that toenail fungus is dying is the sudden appearance of new, healthy nail growth. Over time, an infected nail will gradually be replaced with one that looks healthy with its distinct color and texture; eventually, this new nail will cover more and more of your entire nail surface, and you may be able to cut away its old infected parts.
Signs that toenail fungus is healing can include decreased pain, itching, and discomfort. As the fungus dies off and your nail grows back in, you may take time before you notice that symptoms have improved, so be patient.
Visible lines between healthy nails and those affected by toenail fungus are among the first indicators that the condition is slowly diminishing. Once this happens, it’s essential to follow your healthcare provider’s treatment recommendations to eliminate all traces of the fungus and keep it from returning – these positive indicators, combined with decreased odor and discomfort, are signs that the treatment for toenail fungus is working.
2. Your nails are getting thinner
One of the signs that your nail fungus is dying is its gradual regression; the fungus feeds on nails, thickening them out over time until they finally return to their natural thickness. When your fungus dies, so will its impact – gradually thinned nails will return down toward average thickness.
Signs that your toenail fungus is dying include less itching and pain due to no longer feeding off your nail bed, making the fungus less active. As it begins to die off, there may be a visible distinction between treated and untreated areas on your nail – this indicates that healthy nail growth has replaced it as the source of nourishment.
If you suspect toenail fungus is present, you must seek medical assistance for diagnosis and treatment. A specialist in podiatry or dermatology (a podiatrist or dermatologist) will be able to accurately identify if fungi are the source of your symptoms by asking you questions about them and taking a sample from an infected nail for testing purposes.
There are various treatments for nail fungus, from over-the-counter antifungal creams and oral medication to using medicated polish to kill off and prevent the return of any symptoms. Your doctor may suggest applying medicated polish directly on your nails to eradicate and stop future infection outbreaks.
Remember, toenail fungus can take up to one year for your nails to fully recover. If you are suffering from this condition, continue visiting your doctor regularly for treatment and practicing good foot hygiene to avoid reinfection. Also, wear shoes with ample air circulation and socks made of materials that wick away moisture so as not to cause overly dry nails; furthermore, be wary when entering public showers, locker rooms, and swimming pools since fungi thrive in damp environments such as this.
3. Your nails are getting whiter
Toenail fungus can be challenging to treat and may take months to improve significantly. While you wait for your toenails to heal, it is essential that you observe for signs that the fungus is dying off – this indicates your treatment plan is working and could bring healthier nails in its wake.
One of the first signs that your toenail fungus is slowly clearing away is when your nails start looking whiter than before – antifungal medications often cause this. They can be an early indicator that the infection has finally gone. Furthermore, they may become less rigid over time.
An effective way to detect whether or not your toenail fungus has cleared away is to observe changes to the marks on your nails. Spots and streaks on nails caused by toenail fungus may appear discolored; this makes it easy to mistake for nail trauma or injury. Once toenail fungus begins dying off, these spots or streaks should fade or disappear altogether – an indicator that all the fungi have been eliminated from your toes.
If you want to ensure that the toenail fungus is genuinely gone, speaking with your doctor about an official diagnosis will likely provide the assurance needed for long-term clearance of toenail fungus. They’ll inspect your nails for signs of fungal growth before prescribing a practical course of treatment tailored specifically to you – likely clearing it completely by adhering to their care plan.
Some toenail fungus treatments include applying topical medications directly onto affected nails. While these may take a while, they’ve proven highly effective against mild cases of nail fungus. However, if more severe symptoms develop, your doctor may prescribe an oral medication like terbinafine or itraconazole, which are more effective yet may also have serious side effects; please speak to them before trying them.
The fungus can be an uncomfortable and unsightly affliction that leads to painful nails. Even if your toenail fungus doesn’t cause any immediate problems, it must be treated promptly as it could spread across other toenails or even cause athlete’s foot on surrounding skin areas – potentially spreading its infection further and worsening over time.
4. Your nails are getting stronger
Nail fungus treatment involves eliminating active infections while encouraging healthy nails to emerge. Treatment typically lasts several months and typically entails topical antifungal medications, oral antifungal medicines, or laser therapy as appropriate treatments.
Your treatment will know it is working when the fungus begins to fade away; the nails revert to their natural colors, become less thick and brittle, and feel similar to when you didn’t have a fungal infection.
Fungi thrive in dark, damp places like nail beds. You can help prevent them from taking hold by wearing moisture-wicking shoes, regularly changing socks, washing your feet regularly, and applying an antifungal powder or soak made from vinegar to protect your feet against future infestation.
If the toenail fungus persists beyond self-treatment, you can seek further medical assistance from podiatrists or dermatologists for more intensive treatments. These specialists may take samples from your infected nails for analysis before recommending what therapy might work for you.
Oral medications might be required based on the severity of your fungal nail infection. Terbinafine has proven to be one of the most effective options, up to 70% effective; however, it may cause severe side effects in people who suffer from liver disease or are taking medications processed by the liver, such as cholesterol pills. If this doesn’t suit you well, consider itraconazole, which has proven 50% effective as another solution.
Home remedies such as vinegar soaks, or tea tree oil have successfully combat nail fungus. You could also try the Nail Fungus Remedy System, which utilizes laser technology to penetrate nails and kill any hidden fungi underneath them.
Healing toenail fungus can be slow, but you should remember that it’s working. Be patient, follow your treatment plan faithfully, and soon have healthy nails free from fungal growth!