All The Toenail Fungus Symptoms

toenail fungus symptoms

You have to ask, what are the toenail fungus symptoms. You know, people say you have an “infection” so you must feel something right?

So what is going on with that weird looking toenail? It might be many things but usually they turn out to be harmless. One of the most common things to affect a toenail is…fungus! There are a number of different fungal infections out there and the one thing that they all like is keratin, which is a massive component of nails.

Keratin is their food, they love it and we are…well, a buffet.

In the beginning, a fungal nail infection may not have any obvious symptoms. As it progresses some of the symptoms a nail with a fungal infection might have include:

  • discolouration – the nail may turn white, black, yellow or even brown in colour.
  • thickening and distortion – the nail may become an unusual shape or texture and might be harder to trim. And when it does cut it can be soggy and even smell.
  • pain or discomfort –  the nail may cause discomfort particularly when pressure is applied or because the nail is now much harder to cut, poor nail cutting might lead to nail spikes being left.
  • brittle or crumbly– the nail may have pieces break off.

Some more specific toenail fungus symptoms include the following:

  • Starts at the ends of the nails and raises the nail up: This is called distal subungual onychomycosis (onycho- nail, mycosis- fungus) and is the most common type of nail fungal infection. Toenails are affected much more than fingernails and any toenail can be affected. It might start as a discolored area at a corner of the nail and spread toward the cuticle very slowly. It is at this stage- very shallow, minor fungus that can be very easy to treat.

Eventually the toenail (s) will become thickened and flaky. You are more likely to have a fungal nail if you are elderly, swim regularly, athlete's foot, psoriasis, diabetes, family members with the infection, or have a suppressed immune system.

  • Starts at the base of the nail and raises the nail up: This is called proximal subungual onychomycosis and is the least common type of nail fungal infection. It is similar to the distal type, but will start at the base of the nail and slowly spreads toward the end of the nail.
  • Yeast onychomycosis: This type is caused by a yeast called Candida. It is more common in fingernails but can be found in toenails. Toenails could have an infection, inflammation around the cuticle, the cuticle can be yellow, brown, white, in colour and/or be thickened.
  • White superficial onychomycosis: a white powdery material can form on the top of the nail plate. Sometimes this is confused with the nail polish remover discolouration. It is quite easy to treat at this stage.

So while you don’t actually get that much actual symptoms/ feeling with toenail fungus symptoms- it can present in many different ways.

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