What is a Fungal Infection?                                                         BOOK ONLINE

The medical term for fungal nail infection is ONYCHOMYCOSIS, in which a living fungus infiltrates the toenail. 

Onychomycosis is caused by 3 main classes of fungi:

•Dermatophytes ( the most common cause of toenail fungal issues)
•Nondermatophyte moulds

Dermatophyte fungi feed on a protein, keratin, which is found in your toenails. 

Fungi also thrive on most sugars, therefore reducing your sugar consumption can help.

Fungi are invisible to the human eye until the fungi start infecting the nail.

Up to 50% of all abnormal appearances of toenails are caused by fungus.  Around 10% of adults suffer from fungal infections


Cause of Fungal Infections

Fungi thrive in warm, moist, and dark environments.

Places such as nail salons, showers, public pools, saunas, and gyms create the ideal environments for fungi to cultivate and easily propagate from foot to foot

Fungi spread via direct contact (hence wearing footwear in public areas is extremely important) as well as fungal spores that move through the air. 


Conditions that can make people more susceptible to fungal infections are:  

•Compromised immune system
•Poor circulation
•Increased age
•Previous toenail injuries


Signs & Symptoms

Any signs and or symptoms of a fungal nail infection are the result of the fungus “eating” away at the keratin in the nail. 

•Crumbling or flaky 
•White, yellow, or brown discoloration 
•Worm-eaten appearance
•Possible whitish streaks or spots in the nail
•Your nail may begin to come away from the nail bed
•An odor may develop 

Lifestyle Advice 

•Keep feet dry, especially the skin between the toes
•Try to wear natural fibre socks  
•Change your socks daily 
•Avoid narrow toes shoes to prevent nail trauma
•Wear footwear in public facilities 
•Reduce your sugar consumption
•See your Podiatrist or Foot Health Practitioner if you do have trauma to the nail and or suspect a fungal infection


Treatment Options for fungal nails include:

•Topical antifungal creams and lacquers
•Oral medication 
•Cold laser therapy 
•Hot laser therapy
•Clearanail ©
•Regular Podiatry treatments where a customized treatment plan is created for you.

Recommended Antifungal Creams/Lacquers

•Antifungal Oil
•Resolve Solution 
•Resolve Tinea Cream 
•Lamisil 1% Cream/Gel

Additional Antifungal Treatment Methods 

•Clinisept+ - used to decontaminate hosiery, socks, and shoes as well as an antifungal treatment on the skin 
•Epsom Salts- Bathing with Epsom salts helps reduce inflammation caused by infections and control symptoms such as itching, burning and pain

Treatment also includes:

•Maintaining good hygiene practices
•Washing your socks in hot temperatures to destroy the fungal spores and stop the infection cycle 
•SteriShoe© the use of UV light to destroy the fungal spores in your shoes and stop the infection cycle


It is important to remember that fungal nail infections can be treated, however, it is a commitment and often a long-term treatment.  There are no quick and easy fixes.

Proper diagnosis of fungal nail infections is recommended.  A simple Diafactory Test completed by your Podiatrist or Foot Health Practitioner at your appointment can confirm the existence of the fungal infection. 

Treatment with oral medications is only about 70-80% successful with a chance of relapse if the fungal spores are not addressed. The length of treatment is often around 3-6 months 

Treatment with topical medicaments is defiantly lengthier and can be up to 3 years, with a chance of relapse if the fungal spores are not addressed. 

Treatment with regular visits to your Podiatrist or Foot Health Practitioner combined with a topical medicaments option will assist to maintain and prevent the reoccurrence of fungal nail infections.