8 Ways to Prevent Fungal Nail Infection

Fungal nail infection also known as Onychomycosis is often painless and the condition can be unsightly.

However, later stage fungal nail infection symptoms include:

  • Yellow/brown discolouration of the nail
  • Nail becoming thicker and digging into the skin
  • Excessive nail crumbling
  • Dry skin build up under the nail and on the side of the nails
  • Reduction of nail integrity
Trimming toenails short and not allowing them to grow too long.

This prevents debris from building under the nails and minimises risk of nail injuries. Trim toe nails straight across not curved.

Wear proper fitting shoes.

The end of the shoe should never touch your toe nails. Always leave a thumbs space. Alternate between different shoes to allow for the shoes to air out before wearing them again.

Avoid wearing socks and shoes for long periods of time.

Allow your feet to breath as fungus thrives in warm, moist environments such as sweaty feet. If you do notice your feet becoming itchy especially between your toes, see a podiatrist as soon as possible to determine if fungal skin infection is present. Fungal skin infections tend to spread to the nails.

Use antifungal sprays.

Use antifungal spray in your shoes and on your socks before putting them on when it’s a hot day to control sweat that can prompt fungal nail.

Avoid walking barefoot in public facilities (swimming pools and showers).

Swimming pools and showers are a method of fungal transfer from one person to another. In the water of the pool or on the ground of showers fungus that causes nail infections and athletes foot is present. Always wear thongs when showering in public areas.

Mind your feet when walking.

If nail is traumatised keep an eye out for fungal nail symptoms. Fungal nail often occurs after nail trauma in which the nail lifts off the nail bed and fungus begins to grow under the nail.

Never wear shoes/socks which are not yours.

Fungus can be present in socks and shoes of a person who does have fungal nails.

Never share nail clippers/ files and nail polish with any one.

For those ladies who go to nail salon, make sure staff are sterilising instruments and disinfecting foot baths. Always bring your own nail polish with you because nail polish brushes are not replaced after every customer who may have a fungal nail infection.

Dr. Mechaourab
Foot Lab Podiatry