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What Causes Onychomycosis Or Nail Fungus?

Fungi, including molds and yeast, are usually the cause of nail infections. Most infections are caused by dermatophytes, which are a group of fungi. Nail infection diseases in humans and animals are typically caused by candica albicans, trichophyton mentagrophytes and trichophyton rubrum. These fungi can live in the space underneath your nails, the nail or in the dead layer of skin around your nails.

Fungal nail infections can cause severe damage to the nails and the surrounding areas. Athletes foot or another skin condition can enter the nail and cause an infection. In fact, it is estimated that 30 percent of people with a fungal nail infection are also suffering from a fungal skin infection. Fungi thrive in an area that is damp and warm. Sweaty, hot feet inside of closed toes create the perfect environment for fungi. Below are some of the other risk factors for a nail infection:

  • Poor overall health
  • Smoking
  • Using a shared public facility, such as a locker room or public pool
  • Nail damage
  • A weakened immune system, diabetes or psoriasis

People who suffer from poor circulation and diabetes are more likely to develop complications from Fungal nail infections, such as secondary bacterial infections. The fungus thrives when the foot is inside of a damp, warm shoe for an extended period of time. Walking on a contaminated floor, using contaminated nail equipment and poor foot hygiene are some of the other ways that you can expose your foot to fungus.

What Are The Signs Of A Fungal Nail Infection?

Nail infections can cause the nail to become deformed. This can interfere with walking, sports and other activities. Infected nails often show the following signs:

  • Crumbling nails
  • Nail splitting
  • Dull toenails
  • Broken toenails
  • White spots on the nails
  • Tenderness on the toes
  • A dark color on the toenails

How Does Laser Treatment Work?

The light from the laser passes through the nail and destroys the fungus. The surrounding skin is not damaged. The toenail does not instantly clear. It will take time to grow out.

Is Laser Treatment A Painful Procedure?

The vast majority of patients who get this treatment do not experience any pain. Some patients may feel a slight prick or warming sensation when the laser is applied.

Will I Need To Recover?

There is no recovery needed. Patients will be able to go home and return to their normal activities after their treatment has been completed.

Does The Fungus Grow Back?

You will notice an improvement in your nails after just one treatment. However, it is important to note that it possible for you to get another fungal nail infection. Your Atlanta laser nail specialist will tell you about how you can reduce your chances of a secondary infection.

Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?

Toenail fungus is very contagious. It can very easily spread through public places. You can also transmit the fungal infection if you share socks and shoes with another person.

How Do I Pay For My Laser Treatment?

You can use cash, debit card or credit card to pay for your laser treatment. Additionally, you can use Flexible Medical Spending Accounts, then you can use these funds to pay for your treatment.

When Can I Get A Pedicure Or Paint My Toenails After My Treatment?

You will be able to immediately paint your nails or get a pedicure.

How Long Does It Take To Complete The Procedure?

It will take about an half hour to complete the procedure.

Will The Cost Of My Procedure Be Covered By Health Insurance?

This procedure is considered cosmetic. Health insurance companies do not cover cosmetic procedures. You will be able to use a Flexible Spending Account, Medical IRA and HSA.

Will I Need To Get More Than One Laser Treatment?

The vast majority of patients need to get only one treatment. If your nails are severely infected or thick, then you may be required to get more than one treatment. The good news is that if you need more than one treatment, then you will be able to get a discount on your second.

What Are Some Of The Things That I Can Do To Prevent Nail Fungus?

There are several things that you can do to prevent a fungal nail infection. Because fungus thrives in a moist environment, you will need to allow your feet to breathe. Wear open-toed shoes as much as possible. You also need to trim your toenails and clean them on a regular basis. Avoid sharing shoes with other people. This will cause the fungus to transfer. You may want to apply some anti-fungal spray or powder before putting on your socks.

Furthermore, you have to be cautious when you are in public places. Wear flip flops when you are walking in a pool area or locker room.

Is There Anything That I Need To Do Before My Treatment?

You will need to make sure that you remove any polish and decorations from your toes the day before your treatment. You will also need to wear comfortable that you can very easily roll up. Additionally, bring a fresh pair of socks.

What Can I Expect When I Come To The Office?

You will get a physical examination. If you have a fungal nail infection, then the treatment options will be discussed and follow-up appointments will be arranged.

Atlanta Laser Nail Specialist is a specialized center of American Foot & Leg Specialists, serving residents in Metro Atlanta as well as south Atlanta areas. They offer four locations in: Stockbridge, Locust Grove, Fayetteville, and Forest Park. They have treatment resources including the MLS Laser, PRP Treatment, and the Surgical Center in Forest Park. Patients come from Clayton County, Henry County, Douglas County, Fulton County, Cobb County, Fayette County and beyond.

If you think you have toenail fungus, please contact us at Atlanta Laser Nail Specialist. Our staff members will be happy to answer any questions that you may have or will be happy to set up an appointment for you. Our number is 678-432-7060.