Fungal Nails- Treatment Of Fungal Nails
Fungal toenails are notoriously hard to treat. Topical medications alone are not often effective. Most are unable to penetrate through the nail to completely eradicate the fungus living in the nail bed. The only topical antifugal nail treatment currently approved by the FDA is a medication called Penlac.
Oral antifugal medications cannot cure fungal infections, they can help treat them. Antifugal topicals often slow the advancement of the fungus, improve the appearance of the nails, and soften the nails, making them easier to care for.Common over- the - counter antifugal medications include Nony X, Fungi Care, and Mycocide.
These medications should be applied twice daily to the far end of the nail while pointing the tooes upward. Applying the medication with the toes pointed upward helps draw the medication under the nail.
Oral antifugal medications are available by prescriptions only. These medications are expensive, and health Insurance Plans often have strict requirements for prescription approval.For most people Medicare does not cover the cost of oral antifugal medication for treating the toenails. other insurers require that a lab confirm the infection, that the condition is causing pain, than more than one nail be infected, or that other conditions, such as Diabetes or circulation disorders, also be present.
Those with more serious syptoms or systemic conditions are more vulnerable to secondary bacterial infections caused by severe fungal nails.Treating fungal toenails can be a frustrating experience. There is no quick or easy treatment. Diligently treating the nails twice daily with a topical medication for six to ten months may achieve only mild improvement. Even the most effective treatment-prescription oral medication -requires taking a pill daily for three to four months for a healthy nail to gradually replace the fungal nail.
In addition to using medications, adressing fungus that lives in the shoes is an important part of minimizing the risk of fungal nails, treating them, and preventing recurrence after treatment. A study conducted at the University of Minnesota found that throwing away old shoes and socks after toenails had improved resulted in less chance of reinfection.
While this might be expensive and difficult ( most of us have shoes that are hard to part with), fungus accumulates in shoes over time (and socks to a lesser degree, as socks can be washed), increasing the risk of infection and reinfection.This risk is heightened for people who live in warm climates or who have feet that sweat a lot. Wear clean socks every day. You shouild change your socks several times a day when it is warm and if you have sweaty feet. Air out shoes and expose them to sunlight to minimize the dark, moist conditions in which fungi thrive.
If you have a fungal infection, you should be especially careful with nail-care instruments to decrease the risk of spreading the fungus to other nails. It is best to use two sets of instruments, especially nail clippers - one for the fungal nails and the other for the healthy nails, and a third set should be used for care of the fingernails.Instruments used to treat fungal nails should be discarded following successful treatment.Fungus thrives in dark moist environments,airing out shoes and opening them up to direct sunlight is a great way to kill the fungus that may be living inside.
Reference: Great Feet For Life: Paul Langer : DPM