For many people, the summer months mean it's time to wear sandals and flip-flops. But, as many people look forward to this time of year, it can cause great anxiety for others. If you happen to be dealing with toenail fungus, the last thing you probably want is to wear open-toed shoes. This condition can affect just one or multiple toes. If it starts on one toe, know that this is a highly contagious condition and can easily spread to other toes if not treated promptly. Dr. Richard Wittock from Ankle and Foot Institute serving St. Louis, MO offers laser treatment for toenail fungus, one of the most advanced treatments for toenail fungus to come on the scene in recent years. Read on to learn more.
What causes toenail fungus and what are the symptoms?
Toenail fungus is caused by fungi called dermatophytes. This fungus feeds on a protein that makes up your toenails if you are unlucky enough to be hosting dermatophytes there. These guys love moist and warm spaces. So, there is a catch-22 here. This fungus is the very reason that you do not want to wear open-toed shoes because of the embarrassment it may cause. However, the fungus will multiply and get worse in sweaty socks and shoes.
Toenail fungus will cause obvious aesthetic symptoms, but they do not manifest the same in everyone. Toenail fungus may cause:
- Change in color of the nail (usually a yellowish appearance with white dots showing up in some cases)
- Thickening of the nail
- Warped or oddly shaped nails
- Peeling or brittly nails that easily break
- Unpleasant odor coming from the toenail
- Separation of the toenail from the nailbed can occur in severe cases
How can laser treatment help my toenail fungus?
In St. Louis, MO, laser treatment for toenail fungus is a great option. Laser therapy is an entirely non-invasive treatment that does not involve surgery or medication. Laser treatment for toenail fungus has a higher success rate than topical treatment and oral medications.
The laser treatment apparatus discharges energy vibrations that produce heat. The heat that is emitted from the laser penetrates the nail where the fungus is present and destroys the infected tissue. The heat produced by the lasers will also sterilize the surrounding area. This helps prevent new fungi from taking over your toenail.
Most often, this treatment may be accomplished in one visit, but several sessions may be needed to completely eradicate the fungus. And the best part is that there is no downtime required after this treatment. Once it has bummed a ride onto your toenails and settled in there, the fungus will not go away on its own unless it is addressed.
Treat your feet with laser treatment for toenail fungus in St. Louis, MO, and wear any shoes you want this summer! Schedule a consultation with Dr. Wittock from Ankle and Foot Institute to discuss this treatment by calling (636) 717-1100.