Nail fungus can be a very painful occurrence and, if left untreated, can become a dangerous one as well. A white or yellow spot residing underneath the tip of the nail is a very common nail fungus symptom. This infection can surface in either the fingernail or toenail, or both. Another common nail fungus symptom is discoloration and thickening of the nail. The discoloration is due to a buildup of debris caused by the bacteria and is a nail fungus symptom that is difficult to overlook. Nail fungus will often lead to crumbling edges or a brittle nail. If this, or any other nail fungus symptom, is present, individuals may wish to consult a physician for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Nail fungus is responsible for approximately half of all nail disorders and, because it can be difficult to treat, the best way to treat the ailment effectively is to detect it early. Another common nail fungus symptom is a nail that has become distorted in its shape. If it seems to be dull or lacking luster, this is also a nail fungus symptom. An unpleasant odor and pain in the nail area are discomforts that are often a very definitive nail fungus symptom.
A licensed medical doctor can diagnose nail fungus by examining the suspected area and scraping a portion of debris out from underneath the fingernail. The purpose of this procedure is to study the scraping and test it for the presence of fungi. The physician, or a laboratory technician, will study the sample under a microscope or using other laboratory equipment prior to making a final assessment. Upon a positive diagnosis for nail fungus, a physician will often prescribed some type of anti-fungal medication to effectively treat the bacteria.
Anyone who wants to avoid having to watch for a nail fungus symptom can best accomplish this by taking preventative steps toward making sure the bacteria never appears. Keeping the toenails and fingernails short and clean will help to eliminate additional space for bacteria to grow underneath the nail. In addition, keeping the nails dry will also help to prevent nail fungus. It’s also important to remember that when visiting a nail salon, the customer must make sure that the salon is properly disinfecting their equipment. Because these same utensils are used to treat the nails of various individuals, it is possible to spread bacteria if the salon products are not properly cleaned.