Anyone is at risk for a toenail fungal infection—it simply takes being exposed in the right kind of environment. Going barefoot in a warm, damp place such as a public locker or shower room, for example, is one way to pick up this type of infection. When it invades and grows under the nail, it causes the nail to become discolored, thickened, and brittle. Fortunately, we have many methods of treatment including topical ointments, oral medications, and the Q Clear™ Laser that can eradicate the problem.
Nail fungus can be resistant to treatment and nails take a long time to grow out, so it can take several weeks or months for an infection to be fully resolved. You will know that the treatment is working and the infection is clearing up when you see growth of a new, healthy nail from the base of the nail bed. You can work at slowly trimming off the old, infected nail as the new one grows in.
It can be an alarming sight to take off your running shoes and socks only to discover a discolored, black toenail. This condition is often called “runner’s toe,” but it can occur in others outside of the running community as well. It happens due to repetitive trauma to the toe. The discoloration is from blood pooling under the nail. It may look unsightly and can also cause toe pain.
You can stop your toenail from turning black by keeping nails trimmed (straight across and not too short) and wearing properly fitting shoes. Choose shoes that have a wide toe box so your toes aren’t squished, and that are long enough so that the tips of your toes do not jam against the end of the shoe. Avoid socks that are too tight or thick. If your toenail is painful, we may need to drain the fluid under the nail to relieve the pressure.
Treatment for corns involves relieving the pressure and then softening the painful spot. Relieve pressure on your littlest toe by either changing your shoes or putting pads in between your toe and your footwear. Our staff may recommend salicylic acid or other softening treatments to reduce the corn. Then your doctor at Dallas Podiatry Works can carefully cut away layers of that hard bump on your toe to help with the pressure. You should never try to do that on your own—you could seriously damage healthy skin by accident. If the corn has become infected, you may need antibiotics.
Contaminated nail polish can lead to a fungal infection, yes. Anyone who used it on toes that were already infected would have transferred the nail fungus to the brush and into the solution. Often polish seals the tissue and can encourage fungus-friendly environment as well. So it isn’t atypical for someone to remove their nail polish and discover an infection has developed. The experts here at Dallas Podiatry Works recommend an antifungal polish that can help slow the growth of these germs in the nail tissue. You should also thoroughly disinfect all of your pedicure tools after every use.
When you come to Dallas Podiatry Works for a fungal nail appointment, your doctor will go over the diagnosis with you and discuss your treatment. For your toes to recover, the nail fungus needs to be eradicated. An important part of that is removing as much of the infected tissue as possible. During the appointment, the medical technician will do this carefully with a power burr. The procedure is done in the treatment room and is generally pain free. Often it takes two to four treatments to eliminate the problem.
The time needed for the Q-Clear laser procedure largely depends on your individual condition. Severely infected nails that have developed complications will require a longer and more involved treatment than a small condition that was caught and addressed early. Uncomplicated procedures can take as little as a minute per nail. The vast majority of laser therapies can be completed in less than half an hour—rarely longer, and the procedure is pain-free. You can also return to your activities immediately following your procedure, so you won’t need additional time off work.
The Q-clear Laser works by beaming pulses of high-intensity light through your hard nail tissue to the fungus-infected tissues underneath. The rapid-fire pulses—a fraction of a second each —vaporize the infection-causing cells. This lets your body clean out the damaged tissue and begin re-growing healthy nails. In mild cases of fungal nails, the infection can be destroyed in just one treatment. More serious conditions, however, may need more than one procedure, or even nail debridement to clear out the damaged tissue.
Don’t put up with embarrassing toenails for too long. The sooner you take care of your condition, the easier and quicker it is to recover. The Q-Clear Laser treatment is effective, safe, and painless.
Fungal toenails are caused by microscopic organisms called fungi. Generally, a kind of fungi called dermatophytes are the culprits, but this condition can occasionally be caused by mold or yeast as well. Fungi grow well in warm, damp places, turning pools, public restrooms, locker rooms, and gyms into easy breeding grounds. Injuries to the nail, too-tight footwear, heavy sweating, and pre-existing conditions that weaken the immune system, like diabetes, increase the risk of contracting a toenail infection. Affected nails are usually discolored, thick, brittle, ragged or crumbly, and could even smell foul.
Treatment and recovery for fungal toenails depends on the severity of the infection. The fungus is usually dealt with in two to four treatments—a couple more if the infection is severe. You won’t see an immediate change in your nails following a laser treatment, but that doesn’t mean it did not work. Usually in a few months, when your nail has had a chance to grow, you should see new, healthy nail appearing. Your fungus-free nail will continue to grow and push out the old one, returning your feet to their natural beauty. An infected toenail isn’t completely healthy again until a new nail has grown in, which usually takes six to nine months, though it could be longer. Concerned about how your nails look while they heal? Be sure to ask about the KeryFlex™ toenail restoration procedure offered at Dallas Podiatry Works.
There are four main causes of this common nail condition. Which category lines up with your experience?
Have you injured your toenail? If so, the damaged portion my not grow in the same way that it did prior to the incident. Family traits are relevant as well. Some people have nails that are curvier than others—the result may be recurrent ingrown toenails.
While these things are unavoidable, the other two reasons are within your control. Tight footwear encourages this condition, so make sure that your shoes fit well and that they have plenty of room for your toes. Cutting the nail on a curve also increases your risk. Instead, cut them straight across and file any sharp edges.
There are several topical preparations available to "fix" fungal toenails. However, the efficacy is limited when choosing topical treatments.
Treatment needs to include trimming and thinning out the nails, and often more aggressive treatment such as oral medications or laser therapy is needed.
Everyone has to trim their toenails, but how you cut them does make a difference. Ingrown toenails can result when the nails aren’t cared for properly. Many people like a rounded shape, but it’s best to use clippers to cut straight across the toenail. Follow-up with a nail file to gently remove sharp corners. Request this same treatment when visiting your favorite nail salon.
Another tip for maintaining pain-free toenails—keep them at the right length. Pressure on a nail that is cut too short can cause it to push into the skin as it grows. There are other preventative steps that can be taken to avoid this painful nail condition. Make sure that your shoes fit well. Footwear that is too small, or that has a narrow toe box, can irritate the skin around the nail.
If you have fungal toenails, this may be the best news you’ve heard in a long time! The answer is a resounding, “No!” Many people live with the embarrassment of nails that have become discolored and thickened due to a fungal infection. The Q Clear™ Laser changes that by destroying stubborn toenail fungus. Mild cases may only require one treatment, while more severe infections may need several and debridement, which is a process that aids in the growth of healthy skin. Either way, with an eighty to ninety percent rate of effectiveness, you’ll be on your way to clear, healthy nails!
Wearing your favorite sandals shouldn’t be an anxiety-filled event. Yet, for many Texans the desire to hide their toes outweighs comfort. A fungal infection of the toenail can produce embarrassing discoloration and thickening. You don’t have to hide your feet any longer—fix your fungal nails at Dallas Podiatry Works!
The Q Clear ™ Laser is used in our office to successfully eliminate fungal nails. Our patients experience an eighty to ninety percent rate of effectiveness with only two treatments. Whether you choose laser treatment, oral antibiotics, or topical applications, it takes time for the new, healthy nail to grow. While you wait, enjoy the look of a new nail with KeryFlex™ Nail Restoration. This nail covering will provide cosmetic coverage of the fungal nail for up to eight weeks.
Thick, ugly toenails are usually due to fungal infections of the nails. This condition is called onychomycosis and can be challenging to treat. Topical medications are available but are of minimal efficacy. Oral medications are available, and are effective 65-70% of the time, but carry with them the potential for liver toxicity.
The doctor has great “bedside manners” when talking to patients. Great staff and comfortable atmosphere.
The staff at Dallas Podiatry Works could not have been more courteous, helpful, and professional in doing their job. They made me feel comfortable when I was there, which is certainly appreciated. They answered all the questions that I had and just made each visit the most pleasurable that it could be. I would highly recommend them to anyone needing this type of foot care.
I would highly recommend Dr. Brook to anyone with foot problems–especially problems that stump other podiatrists. He really is very caring and very knowledgeable.
Dr. Joel Brook and the staff were nice and helpful. Though I was a new patient, I got right in as soon as they were open in my preferred location. They diagnosed the problem and provided medicines along with a perfect gel bandage so I could keep exercising while my toes healed. My toes already hurt less and look a little better each day. If I have future issues, I will be a repeat customer. Here’s hoping I don’t, but at least I know my feet are in good hands.
I visited this office for an ingrown toe nail a few years ago. After seeing another doctor, who made it worse, he referred me to Dallas Podiatry Works. The doctor there was able to fix my problem. I’m not great with reviews, all I can tell you is that this doctor and staff will have you up and running or doing whatever it is you do in no time. You will be in great hands. You’d be a fool not to use this doctor. Now its time to visit him again for the other toe.
Been having bad ankle pains for 6 months was referred here and it was a great visit ladies in the front desk medical assistants and the Doctor were all very friendly and make you feel very comfortable.
Dallas Office: 12221 Merit Drive, Suite 280, Dallas, TX 75251
Plano Office: 5068 W. Plano Parkway, Suite 155, Plano, TX 75093