Do you have an itchy nail because of nail fungus and you feel like scratching it all the time? You do not need to get worked up in the situation because we will give you insight into toenail fungus. Plus, we will answer your biggest fear and that is whether the fungus is contagious or not.
What is toenail fungus And Is toenail fungus contagious?
Toenail fungus (onychomycosis) is a common condition that affects the nails of the toes. The most common symptom is thickening and discolouration of the nail, but it can also cause pain and discomfort.
Onychomycosis may begin as yellow or white spots under the nail, which can develop into brown, black or white patches as the infection spreads. If left untreated, onychomycosis can cause permanent damage to your nails and sometimes even deform them.
There are many types of toenail fungus.
The most common type is called “Onychomycosis” or “Tinea Unguium” which is a fungal infection of the nail.
1.Distal Subungual Onychomycosis (DSO) – DSO affects the end of the nail, closest to the cuticle. It can be painful if you get hit by a hammer or some other object that causes trauma to your toe and nails. The nail will appear thicker and discolored with an irregular surface texture and may even feel gritty when rubbed against something else. DSO can be difficult to treat because it can easily spread from one nail to another if not treated properly.
2.Proximal Subungual Onychomycosis (PSO) – PSO affects the nail bed beneath the tip of your finger or toe (closest to your skin). Most people do not notice PSO until they start noticing fingernails turning white or yellowish in color, which can take months or years for them to grow out so you can see it clearly enough to diagnose yourself properly at home rather than waiting until you see your doctor who will probably prescribe something
What causes toenail fungus?
Toenail fungus thrives in warm, moist environments and is more likely to affect people whose feet are frequently exposed to water. It’s also more common in people who have diabetes or a weakened immune system.
The fungus responsible for onychomycosis can be caught from someone else’s feet and then spread to your own. For example, you could catch it from using a public pool and then transfer it to your own feet when you take off your shoes and socks at home. You could also get it from walking barefoot in areas that are infected with fungus such as public showers or shared bathrooms at work or school.
Is toenail fungus contagious?
If you have a fungal infection around your nails, you may wonder if this condition is contagious.
The good news is that toenail fungus is not contagious in the general sense of the word. However, it can spread from one nail to another if you don’t take steps to prevent it.
How Does Toenail Fungus Spread?
When a person has an infection under his or her fingernails or toenails, spores may be released into the air where they are inhaled by others nearby. These spores can then settle in the lungs and cause an infection there — but this is unlikely because most people have strong immune systems that prevent such infections from occurring in this way.
In fact, most cases of nail fungus occur when someone scratches his or her nail too hard while cleaning it or while trimming it with clippers or scissors (which can cause splinters).
How to prevent the Spread of Toenail Fungus
There are several things you can do to prevent or slow the spread of toenail fungus.
Keep your feet dry and clean.
The best way to prevent toenail fungus is to keep your feet dry and clean. This will help keep the fungus from spreading from one nail bed to another. Use a foot powder or spray that contains an antifungal agent. If your feet sweat a lot, try wearing socks at night and change them frequently during the day. If you must wear sandals or open-toed shoes when it’s hot outside, use an antifungal ointment on your toes before putting on the shoes so they won’t get contaminated with the fungus from other people’s feet or from walking barefoot in public places like gyms and locker rooms.
Wear socks and shoes when possible.
Don’t walk barefoot in public places (gyms, shower stalls) where many people walk around without shoes on their feet all day long — this increases your risk of getting athlete’s foot and other skin infections from other people’s dirty feet! Also avoid walking barefoot on carpeting as well as high-risk surfaces like swimming pool decks or even grass lawns if there’s dew on them because these surfaces can harbor fungus
Don’t touch other people’s personal items without first washing your hands thoroughly with soap and hot water or using alcohol-based hand sanitizer (70% ethyl alcohol). This includes phones, computers and keyboards—anything that someone else touches frequently can become contaminated with fungus.
If you have diabetes mellitus or peripheral arterial disease (PAD), ask your doctor about taking prescription drugs that lower blood sugar or cholesterol levels — these may help prevent nail fungus from growing under your nails.
If you frequently wear closed shoes, you should be aware of toenail fungus, the condition that can potentially affect your life. In fact, it is now considered one of the over-the-counter health conditions that have been diagnosed by doctors as fast as the pandemic has spread. Don’t let it enter your home and be ready to take precautions to prevent from spreading to you and your loved ones.