Nail fungus is a fungal infection that affects a person’s nails. Also known as onychomycosis, nail fungus can appear on a person’s hands or feet, but it is more commonly found in the toenails. Nail fungus is not usually painful, but it can have a very unpleasant appearance. When not treated, this can become an ongoing or chronic issue, spreading to other nails via prolonged contact. This fungus can also spread from person to person if the necessary precautions are not taken, such as not wearing sandals in a public shower.
Nail Fungus Causes
Typically, nail fungus is caused by a group of fungi called dermatophytes. However, this infection can also be caused by yeasts and molds, which makes determining an exact cause difficult. That said, the most common method for fungus, yeast, or mold to enter the nail is through a break or cut, usually caused by a small injury or poorly fitted shoes. In general, this fungus is contracted in warm or wet places, such as in a public shower or locker room.
Fungal nail infections can be very contagious, so it is important to take several precautions if you are affected. This includes always wearing shoes in public spaces, maintaining protection in places like locker rooms and public pools, and seeking nail fungus treatment as soon as possible.
Nail Fungus Symptoms
Symptoms will differ depending on the type of fungi contracted. In most cases, the infected nail will become thickened, brittle, ragged, distorted in shape, and/or dull or dark in color. Infected nails may also have patches of white or yellow. It is rare for nail fungus to be painful, but some patients may experience discomfort. Most often, peeling skin and crumbling, yellow nails are the tell-tale signs of a fungus.
Nail Fungus Treatment
Nail fungus can be difficult to treat because identifying the fungus takes an experienced eye and practiced hand. First, the doctor will need to determine which type of fungi has infected the nail. After making this determination, they will prescribe either an oral or topical medication for treatment. Surgical procedures are rarely needed, but they may be recommended in extreme cases. Some patients also experience relief by taking supplements to rid the body of the infection. Nail fungus treatment is extremely personalized because it will target the specific fungus and cause.
Once the nail fungus treatment takes effect, it is important to prevent future infections. This includes avoiding walking barefoot in public areas, wearing well-fitted shoes, and keeping the hands and feet as dry as possible. We also recommend using antifungal powders.
When to See a Dermatologist for Nail Fungus Treatment
Drugstores and pharmacies advertise over-the-counter nail fungus treatments, but they are rarely very effective. To properly treat the infection, you must first identify the type of fungus. Only a medical professional has the experience and education necessary to do this. Plus, the best nail fungus treatments are only available with a doctor’s prescription.
If you think you have nail fungus, make an appointment and any of our three Minnesota offices. We have specialized fungal infection treatments designed to help patients like you. Contact Us to schedule an appointment or virtual visit today.
*Results may vary per patient. Services vary by location.
Zel Skin & Laser Specialists – Plymouth ★★★★★ on Google
5:27pmFelt COvid safe ... always a great experience working with professionals
Dr. Zelickson is thorough and patiently attentive to my concerns. Such a great practice and so easy to deal with. A great emphasis on safety during this pandemic which I really appreciate.
Brian brings a unique combination of medical science, clinical expertise, integrity and compassion to his patients. He provides the latest technology available in the field of dermatology but with a personalized touch for each patient. He is highly respected by his colleagues throughout the country for his expertise and sincerity.
Everyone I have met at Zel is amazing!
It is rare to find a dermatologist who is as knowledgeable about the many facets of clinical and cosmetic dermatology as Dr. Zelickson. Because of his knowledge and honesty, doctors worldwide know they can depend on his assessment of new therapies, procedures and medical devices. This, in turn, has made him a much sought–after speaker for the plethora of professional medical society meetings and engagements that we have throughout the year. I am honored to know Dr. Zelickson and consider him a friend to the profession.
Dr. Brian Zelickson was one of our initial Thermage investigators and helped us understand the mechanisms of non–invasive skin tightening. He is a renowned expert on how collagen can affect skin tightening and wrinkle reduction.
Dr. Brian Zelickson is one of this country’s leading laser experts. Not only is he unparalleled as a laser surgeon, it is not an exaggeration to state that his superb research helps determine the future of dermatologic laser surgery.
Dr. Zelickson is a highly regarded skin/light expert in our industry. When Candela looks for both medical and scientific advice for new laser applications, we often turn to him for his counsel. The input he provides us always starts with patient safety and satisfaction. We feel fortunate to be able to tap into Brian as an independent resource. The patients who are treated with Candela devices are often the beneficiaries of Brian’s input to us.
Most patients prefer seeing a doctor who is known for a particular specialty or procedure, but all patients want to see the doctor who invented the procedure or therapy. Dr. Brian Zelickson is one of the most respected physicians in the field of cosmetic dermatology and aesthetic medicine. He has lectured around the world and is one of the most sought–after speakers for all major meetings in dermatology.
I would rate Dr. Zelickson's clinic 10 stars!
We have felt honored to have Dr. Brian Zelickson, a world–renowned dermatologist who is distinguished as a high–quality care physician, serving as the investigator evaluating Syneron non–invasive skin tightening technology
I trained with Dr. Zelickson at Mayo Clinic, and I found him to be a very bright and creative dermatologist and scientist. Later, he was our best advisor when we set up our clinic in the Basque Country in Spain. I call him the ‘paparazzi of dermatology.’ His contribution to our speciality is probably among the best of this century.
Tuve la suerte de conocer al Dr. Brian Zelickson en Minneapolis hace muchos anos y desde entonces acudo regularmente a compartir sus conocimientos. Es un científico honrado, brillante, creativo e innovador. Nunca deja de sorprenderte agradablemente.
Dr. Zelickson is a very well–respected dermatologist, not only in the U.S., but also in Europe. He is famous for being the author of relevant dermatological studies published in many prestigious medical journals and for the improvements he’s made on minimally invasive cosmetic procedures that are being used by dermatologists all over the world.
Our view from Europe of Dr. Brian Zelickson is that he is one of the leading four or five U.S. laser dermatologists. His research contributions, his superb lectures and his expert knowledge of laser skin surgery make him a valued friend, colleague and guest.
Dr. Brian Zelickson is one of the world’s leaders in cutaneous laser surgery. He has performed groundbreaking research over the past decade, advancing the field as well as expertly providing the most up–to–date laser treatments for his patients.
Brian Zelickson is a world–renowned laser expert who helps develop the lasers and treatment parameters used by the rest of the world. He is where others turn to learn the latest techniques in laser surgery. If you want the best treatment available, delivering the best results in the safest environment available, there is no need to look anywhere else.
I have met many laser experts in my 20 years of teaching, lecturing and running a busy practice. There is no one who I respect more than Brian. If I have a clinical question or research idea, Brian is one of the few individuals I call, as I know I can count on his intellect, integrity and common sense.
Dr. Zelickson is one of America’s most knowledgeable laser experts. He has done pioneering work with many of the laser and light–based technologies developed in the world over the last 10 years. He is a giant in the field.
Dr. Zelickson is one of the world’s leaders in the field of lasers for the treatment of the skin. His many years experience in treating thousands of patients with lasers and other medical devices makes him one of the most sought–after doctors in this field. Innovation and caring are his trademarks.