Discolored, brittle nails could be a sign of toenail fungus. Toenail fungus afflicts 15% of Americans, most common among athletes and fitness buffs in particular. At American Surgeons Group, board-certified podiatrists Timothy Horak, DPM, and Julia Shauger, DPM, offer laser treatment for fungal toenails. Laser treatment isn't considered painful and avoids the need for harsh chemical creams. Learn more by calling the office nearest you in Homewood, South Chicago Heights, Homewood, or Mokena, Illinois. You can also request an appointment online.
Toenail fungus is a common foot condition characterized by a fungal infection in one or more toenails. Fungal toenails occur when microorganisms enter the skin around your toes, typically when you stub your toe or suffer a minor injury.
As the fungus spreads, your toenails become discolored and brittle, among other symptoms. It's best to seek prompt treatment from the American Surgeons Group to save your nail and prevent the fungus from spreading to other toes.
The symptoms of fungal toenails depend on the location and severity of the infection. Common signs of toenail fungus include:
If you have toenail fungus, you could also notice an unpleasant odor coming from your feet.
Athletes and fitness enthusiasts tend to be more susceptible to fungal toenails because their physical activity increases their chances of toe injuries that may lead to infection. Spending time in moist environments, such as public swimming pools, public showers, and locker rooms, also increases the risk of toenail fungus.
Fungal toenails also are more common if you have diabetes or insulin resistance.
Long-standing treatment methods include topical creams and oral medications. While these methods typically have a high success rate, the toxicity of these medications may lead you to search for alternatives.
American Surgeons Group offers a nontoxic laser solution to treat toenail fungus by heating it with an intense light beam. The light destroys the fungus, and then your body expels it.
You feel sensations of heat followed immediately by coolness during your laser treatment. Most patients say it isn't painful.
The laser treatment takes only about 15 minutes. Your provider at American Surgeons Group may recommend several treatments spread out over time. After a series of treatments, your provider may recommend coming back after six months to see if the fungus has returned.
To stop the spread of fungal toenails today, call American Surgeons Group, or book a consultation online.