Toenail fungus is also referred to as onychomycosis. It is characterized as an infection that lies under the surface of the nail, often causing the nail to smell bad and become dark in color. Since untreated toenail fungus can lead to trouble walking and a spread of the infection, Dr. Salma Aziz sees patients for laser nail fungus treatment in Orange County.
How is nail fungus caused?
Coming into contact with any fungi can lead to toenail fungus. You are more likely to come across fungi if you frequent warm and moist environments, like swimming pools. Cuts around the nails can also be an invitation for nail fungus.
Your fingernails are exposed to fungi as well, but toes are more vulnerable – especially if you go barefoot often. If you suffer from immune deficiency conditions, diabetes, chronic diseases, or other problems, you may also be at an increased risk of experiencing toenail fungus.
When should I see my doctor?
Treatment for toenail fungus is important, because you want to prevent the infection from spreading or from permanently damaging your toenail. You should make an appointment to come and see Dr. Salma Aziz if the infection appears to be spreading at all, whether it is spreading under the nail or to the surrounding skin. You should also contact us if the area causes you any pain or discomfort.
If your toenail fungal infection is demonstrating signs of a bacterial infection, you should be seen immediately. These concerning symptoms include any sudden increase in pain, swelling, or redness, pus discharge, or a fever that appears seemingly for no reason.
In general, you should see your doctor at any sign of toenail fungus. It’s better to manage the infection, like with laser nail fungus treatment, than wait for it to potentially spread and do further damage.
What will the laser treatment entail?
The procedure for laser nail fungus treatment is minimally invasive and free of pain and discomfort. During the treatment, your foot doctor will shine a laser, or concentrated light, into the affected toenail. This will vaporize the fungus that is embedded in the nail plate and nail bed. The surrounding healthy tissue will not be affected. Your doctor is free to answer any questions that you have about the procedure, including the pulse frequency that is used and the number of treatments that are needed for your situation.
There are other treatment methods for toenail fungus that are effective, and Dr. Aziz will work with you to make sure that the treatment utilized is one that works well for you.