Summer is well under way, and though some of us are dreading the end of the warmer season, others may be celebrating the upcoming colder weather. Why?
Simply put, because of unsightly toenail fungus!
And if you have been dealing with this pesky condition, then you already know that thick, crumbling, yellowed-looking toenails can be more than just a source of discomfort. Sometimes fungal nails can be a cause for embarrassment, too!
So, bring on the colder temperatures when you will finally be able to hide your feet under socks and shoes – no more coming up with excuses for wearing sneakers to the pool, right?
Well, not so fast.
Hiding your toenails from the world will only make the problem much worse. In fact, doing so will create the perfect environment for the fungus to thrive under the nail: warm, dark, and sweaty. What’s worse, the infection can easily spread throughout the nail and even start affecting other neighboring toenails and the skin on your feet!
But there is good news:
Dr. Anthony Spitz has the best tools available to restore your toenails to health right here at our Wheeling office. Armed with both topical medications and laser therapy, Dr. Spitz has been able to provide great results to many of our patients – and he can do the same for you!
Getting Rid of Fungal Nails May Be Hard … But Not Impossible!
Now, you may be thinking: Lasers? For fungal nails? Really?
And the answer to that is, well, yeah really! (But more on that in a bit.)
First, let’s talk about a more mainstream approach: topical medications.
Topical solutions for fungal nails often come in the form of a brush-on lacquer, gels, or sprays which are applied directly to the affected nail over the course of several months. They work well for mild to moderate cases of toenail fungus, but may not be as effective when treating infections that have become more severe.
In many cases, the medication may find it hard to penetrate the nail and get to the source of the problem, especially if the nail has become thick due to infection. Because of this, we often combine topical solutions with other forms of antifungal therapy – like laser treatment.
Laser Treatment for Fungal Nails
This type of treatment uses very specific light energy to kill the fungus at its very source. Even better, studies have shown that laser treatment for fungal nails is the best treatment option available for patients suffering from this unsightly problem, with a success rate of up to 90 percent in clinical trials!
This is a huge step up from topical medications where only 12 percent of patients experience partial to complete clearing of the nail. If over-the-counter topical solutions have not been able to successfully treat your fungal nails, there is no need to worry – laser treatment is a safe, FDA approved option that offers proven results.
And if that weren’t enough, check out these additional benefits:
• Treatment sessions are quick, lasting about 15 minutes.
• There is no need for recovery period. Once the treatment session has been completed, you can walk right out the door and go back to your normal activities.
• There are no known side effects or pain associated with laser treatment.
• Quicker results – taking about 6 to 9 months (though you will start to see new, healthy nail grow out in about 3 months.)
This, of course, does not mean that during treatment your nails cannot become infected again. It’s important that you take measures to prevent any chances of coming into contact with contaminated surfaces and environments.
Steer Clear from Reinfection
The truth is preventing the problem in the first place is much easier than getting rid of it. So here are some things to keep in mind:
• Wear sandals or shower shoes when walking in wet public areas, like locker rooms and pool decks.
• Choose footwear made of breathable materials that allow air to circulate around your feet.
• Wash and dry your feet thoroughly every day, taking extra care to dry between the toes.
• Keep your socks and shoes clean and dry – change your socks several times throughout the day if you have to.
• Never share socks or shoes, even with close friends and family members.
• Sanitize nail clippers, nail files, and pedicure instruments – and never share them.
• Trim your nails the right way: keep them short (but not too short) and make sure to cut the nail straight across rather than in an arch.
That said, we may also combine both treatments (topical medications and laser therapy) to help you accelerate the healing process and prevent the infection from returning.
The bottom line, however, is that toenail fungus will not go away on its own. Much on the contrary; when left untreated, the problem will continue to spread and become harder to get rid of. So if you are dealing with fungal nails, come visit our office right away for professional care.
All you have to do is give us a call at (847) 465-9311 today. You can also take advantage of our online request form to have a staff member reach out to you.
505 N. Wolf Rd
Wheeling, IL 60090
Mon: 10am - 7pm
Tue: 10am - 5pm
Thu: 10am - 5pm
Fri: 10am - 4pm
Sat: 10am - 3pm