Toe fungus

Fungal infection of the toes is a problem of great concern. Itchy, burning, and looking unsightly skin and nails are just a small part of it. The disease is dangerous with complications that are even more difficult to cure. However, you can face the problem if you take the treatment of a fungal infection (yeast infection) seriously.

fungal toe treatment with fungal cream

Why do fungi appear on the feet?

Fungi are a type of infectious agent that affects the skin. They are complex and extremely stubborn microorganisms. Therefore, fungal diseases require a serious and comprehensive approach to treatment.

Fungi have their favorite habitats on the skin. First of all, it is the skin of the toes and nails. The reason is understandable: the feet are usually inside the shoe, inside which a lot of moisture and dirt accumulates, and it is also very hot. Therefore, the fungi that live on the feet have a lot of food and a favorable microclimate for reproduction. Certain types of complex fungi are more likely to infect the skin, while other types of fungi, such as yeasts and molds, prefer nail plates. Simultaneous infection with several types of fungi is also possible.

Contribute to the development of fungi on the toes:

  • reduced local and general immunity;
  • poor foot hygiene;
  • uncomfortable and tight shoes;
  • irregular change of socks or stockings;
  • wear socks or stockings made of synthetic and breathable materials;
  • regular hypothermia or overheating of the feet;
  • circulatory disorders in the legs;
  • phlebeurism;
  • chronic diseases of the cardiovascular system, diabetes mellitus;
  • a long course of antibiotics;
  • increased sweating of the legs;
  • lack of vitamins and minerals in the body;
  • mechanical damage to the skin, calluses, foot injuries;
  • excess weight, excessive physical activity on the legs;
  • irregular cutting of the toenails.

The most important of these factors are reduced immunity and poor circulation in the legs. A decrease in immunity can occur for various reasons. These are usually serious chronic diseases, mainly infectious. In addition, immunity may decrease due to HIV, taking immunosuppressants, and cancer. Equally important is the violation of blood circulation in the toes - due to vascular disease, blood, diabetes, smoking.

Yeast infection of the feet can develop in both men and women. They appear more often in adults than in children.

Some types of fungi constantly inhabit the skin and are activated only under unfavorable circumstances, for example, fungi of the genus Candida. And other species are passed from person to person. Infection can occur when visiting the gym, bathing, showering, if the person does not use personal shoes. People who wear someone else's shoes or socks, or let others use them, are also at high risk of infection. Often the infection occurs when using the same towels, manicure accessories, etc. Factors that increase the risk of infection are cuts on the surface of the skin, deformation of the nail plates.

Symptoms of toe fungus

The main symptoms of yeast infection of the feet are itching and burning. There may also be skin redness, small blisters, increased scaling and roughness of the skin, and an unpleasant odor. The first symptoms of mycosis of the skin can be mistaken for simple irritation, friction.

Symptoms of onychomycosis

The fungus can affect not only the skin, but also the nails. The last type of yeast infection is called onychomycosis. The main symptom of onychomycosis is a change in the structure and type of the nail, its increased fragility. The nail turns yellow, grooves and cracks appear on its surface, the nail plate thickens and deforms. If left untreated, the nail will gradually flake off and disintegrate from the nail bed.

What a fungus looks like on a finger: photo

You do not have to diagnose yourself, based on photographs. The diagnosis should be made by a qualified dermatologist.

dermatologist examines patient's legs

Only he will be able to determine the type of fungus. To do this, he may need not only an external examination of the feet, but also laboratory tests on skin scrapings.

fungus of the skin of the fingers - the initial stagesevere stage of mycosis of the skin of the toesthe initial stage of toenail fungusnail fungus - severe stage

However, the presence of signs that even remotely resemble those shown in the photographs is a cause for concern and a visit to a doctor.

Treatment of the disease is complex and is carried out at home under the supervision of a doctor.

treatment of toes with ointment for fungus

Fungus on the little finger

The fungus can affect the skin of any toe. But the little toes are the most vulnerable to infections. The little toe of tight shoes is often compressed, causing abrasions and impaired circulation to the skin. With the defeat of the small nail, the disease develops very quickly, faster than on any other nail. If the little finger is infected, the infection can very quickly affect the other fingers.

Fungi on the little toe are treated the same way as fungi on other areas of the skin. With onychomycosis of the small nail, the most rational solution may be to remove the nail plate. This operation will not cause much inconvenience to the patient, since the nail of the little finger grows back quickly. However, until the nail grows back (this may take 3 to 4 months), antifungal drugs should be used to prevent re-infection.

How to treat toe fungus?

The treatment of mycosis must be started at the first alarming symptoms. First of all, you need to contact a dermatologist for a diagnosis. Before starting treatment, it is necessary to establish the very fact of the presence of mycosis and the type of pathogenic microorganisms. For this purpose, the doctor will take a scraping off the skin or cut off a piece of the nail (if the nail is affected). Blood tests, blood tests for sugar are done. Fungal infections of the skin of the feet should be differentiated from:

  • other infectious diseases of the skin;
  • allergic reactions;
  • dermatoses caused by diabetes, vascular disease, stress and nervous disease.

For the treatment of yeast infections on the legs, local remedies (sprays, ointments, creams) are most often used. Only in severe cases can the doctor prescribe antimycotic pills. The most commonly used tablets are fluconazole, itraconazole, terbinafine.

Treatment is based on the use of antimycotics. This type of preparation contains substances which kill fungi (fungicide) or stop their reproduction (fungistatic).

Which antimycotics are most often used:

  • clotrimazole,
  • ketoconazole,
  • terbinafine,
  • nystatin,
  • miconazole,
  • econazole,
  • fluconazole.

Local preparations with antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and keratolytic properties are also used. Antibacterial agents are prescribed in case of suppuration, that is, bacteria join the fungal infection. Anti-inflammatory drugs work well with unpleasant symptoms such as itching and burning. However, they do not affect the very cause of the disease - pathogenic microorganisms. Keratolytic agents include zinc, sulfur, and sulfur-salicylic ointments. They accelerate the regeneration of skin tissue by accelerating the exfoliation of the dead epidermis.

For the treatment of mycosis of the feet, baths with antiseptic agents are also used - solutions of potassium permanganate, iodine, salt, baking soda, boric acid. It is better to do the baths before going to bed for 20 minutes. To prevent infection with spores, healthy areas of the skin should be treated with chlorhexidine, iodine, hydrogen peroxide, and potassium permanganate. For the treatment of onychomycosis, varnishes containing antimycotic substances are used - loceryl, exoderil, batrofen. These varnishes should be applied to the nail plate.

Ointments and creams should be applied to previously washed and clean skin at the frequency specified in the product instructions. The area of application of the ointment should be slightly larger than the area of the visible lesion. To apply the varnish to the nail plate, the nail should be steamed, the uneven edges should be sanded with a file, and the nail surface should be degreased with a solution containing alcohol.

In folk medicine, decoctions of medicinal plants are used to get rid of yeast infection on the legs - chamomile, calendula, sage, St. John's wort, mint, vinegar solution, onion and lemon juice.

What if the finger fungus does not go away?

Treating yeast infection is a long and difficult process. Fungal microorganisms are very stubborn and it is impossible to get rid of them in a few days. Sometimes it takes several months of careful therapy. In this case, the treatment should not be interrupted for a single day. Treatment for onychomycosis cannot be completed until a new, healthy nail plate has grown.

It is also important to take into account other factors associated with the development of the disease. Failure to respect skin hygiene and optimal temperature conditions for the feet can negate any therapeutic effort. This means that it is necessary to regularly wash the surface of the skin of the feet, to avoid overheating or hypothermia. It is also important to avoid mechanical damage to the skin, excessive stress on the feet, cuts and injuries. Being overweight puts more strain on your feet, so if you are overweight, you may want to consider losing weight.

If the patient constantly wears shoes infected with the fungus, no strong drugs will help, since new drugs will immediately replace dead microorganisms. Therefore, it is necessary to get rid of all the factors contributing to reinfection. You can't walk in someone else's shoes, someone else's socks. Socks should be washed thoroughly and changed regularly. The inner surface of the shoe should be thoroughly sprayed with antifungal agents.

With persistent yeast infection, you need to analyze the general state of health. Perhaps this will help identify the causes of impaired immunity and blood circulation in the legs. Therefore, it may be worth having a full examination and ruling out problems with the heart, blood, blood vessels and organs of the endocrine system.

Finally, it is possible that the microorganisms simply developed resistance to the antimycotic agent used. Then it will be necessary to change the drug. Systemic antimycotic pills may be needed. The dosage of the drugs should be chosen by a specialist dermatologist.