How to Avoid Fungal Toenails


A fungal toenail infection that can result in thick, yellow, brittle, and very smelly toenails which are not something you want to be strutting around with barefoot during the beautiful summer weather. The fungi that cause the infection love the warm, moist environment that is inside your footwear. In fact, the same organisms that cause Athlete’s foot infection also cause fungal toenails.  

Once a fungal toenail infection is advanced, you will need to see your foot doctor to completely eradicate it using an advanced laser treatment. But you can help avoid getting the fungal infection in the first place. 

By following these guidelines, you can help prevent fungal toenail infections: 

  • Proper nail cutting technique—This is a major way to avoid ingrown toenails: be sure to trim them straight across and a little long, so the edge of the nail doesn’t have a chance to grow into the tender skin.

  • Keep your feet clean and dry—Be certain to carefully wash and dry your feet every day. This will kill any microbes.

  • Wear breathable footwear—Wear shoes made of breathable fabric like Gore-Tex and canvas. Socks should also be lightweight and clean.

  • Protect your feet—It’s best not to walk barefoot in public areas like locker rooms, showers, and pool areas. Don’t share nail clippers and other personal care devices with anyone.

  • Use antifungal topicals—These sprays and lotions can be applied on your feet and inside your footwear to kill the fungal organisms and keep them from spreading. 

If you need help with fungal toenails, see your podiatrist for the most advanced treatment. At Monroe Foot & Ankle Care, Dr. Elliott M. Perel treats a variety of conditions including diabetic foot problems, bunions, nail fungus, arthritis, and heel pain. Equipped with advanced technologies including shockwave therapy, MLS Laser treatment, and computerized gait analysis, Monroe Foot & Ankle Care provides specialized, high-quality service for patients across central New Jersey. For any problems you may be experiencing with your feet and ankles, contact our Monroe/Jamesburg office at (732) 521-2155.