Preventing Fungal Nail Infections

The treatment of fungal nail infections is difficult and not always effective. Prevention is the best way to cure a fungal nail infection.

Many self care methods of prevention can reduce your chances of acquiring a fungal infection of the nails and these include:

Clean nails: Trimming and keeping the nails clean is important to prevent damage or infection. The toe nails are often the most neglected part of the body and not enough nail care is devoted. After a shower, the toes and the skin in-between should be dried.

Socks: Wearing the same dirty socks or stockings should be avoided. It is important to keep the toes clean, dry and change the soaks regularly. Warmth and humidity increase the chances of developing fungal infections of the nails. When at home, remove the socks and let the toes breathe the fresh air.

Anti fungal powder: For those who have persistently warm and wet feet, the chances of developing a fungal infection are high. One should always dry the feet and spray an anti fungal powder each day. In addition, spraying some powder inside the shoes may also help.

Before bedtime, thoroughly wash and dry your feet or hands. Apply the medicated powders like terbinafine (Lamisil) or ciclopirox (Penlac), directly to your skin or nail. One must use the topical medication for 1 year.

Gloves: For those who are continuously exposed to water, wearing of rubber gloves is recommended to keep the nails dry.

Skin: For those in the habit of scratching or pricking the skin with instruments- this is a bad practice and only invites infections.

Wear dry shoes that allow air to circulate around your feet. Avoid tight, constricting shoes. Trauma to the toe tips because of tight shoes is one the leading factors that leads to a recurrent fungal nail infection.

Public places; Avoid going to public places like pools, showers and lockers in bare feet.

Pedicure: There are 100s of salons around which cater to pedicures and manicures. Choose one which is clean and has a high standard of safety. Make sure the instruments are sterilized

Nail polish
: When a nail is infected, do not camouflage it with nail polish or cream. This only worsens the infections.

: Each time you touch an infected toe nail, you can spread it to the other toe nails. So wash your hands frequently.

Don't share personal hygiene products like shoes, socks, nail clippers, or nail files with others.

Those who have diabetes should be careful with their blood sugar levels and one should quit smoking

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