How to Know if it is Nail Fungus or Something Else


You cannot get your eyes off your fingernails and toenails when you notice something different with them. You browsed the Internet and from the information you gathered, it seems you have nail fungus.

You must remember that there are a lot of problems which may happen to your nails. To know if it is just poorly done manicure or really fungal infection, you have to ask yourself some questions and inspect your nails carefully.

Nail Fungus

It is not nail fungus at all if you don’t walk barefoot in the public pool or gym shower or you’re not exposed to warm and humid working environment frequently and you don’t share shoes, nail files and nail cutters with other people.

Onychomycosis or nail fungus first manifests itself as a yellowish or white spot on the nail. As the nail fungus develops, the infected nail will break, thicken, be crumbly, lack luster and be discolored or deformed. The surrounding tissue or skin may also be inflamed. Nail fungus infection may be very painful in the long run, and like athlete’s foot it may emit a very foul odor. Scaling of the sides of the toenails may occur.

The toenails are more prone to nail fungus since it is often inside the shoes, which present a warm and moist environment that perfect for fungal growth.

Distribution of the problem has a pattern. Nail fungus often affect only one hand at a time. However, in the case of feet, it is more often that both will have nail fungus at the same time.

If the symptoms mentioned are not present, most likely it is not nail fungus but another condition.

Signs and Symptoms of Other Nail Conditions

There are other symptoms that will also make you stare at your nails. These are, however, not symptoms of nail fungus:

Ridges and Lines – There is nothing to worry. Appearances of these are part of the normal aging process.

Yellowish or Whitish Nails – This is due to onycholysis or the occurrence of gap between the nail and the nail bed. The normal pinkish color will return after several months.

Green Nails – No, you have not turned into a monster but pseudomonas may have accumulated in the gap in between your nail and nail bed. The greenish shade disappears in around two months.

Black or Red Nails – There is bruising on the nail bed, which is most likely due to trauma. Like any other hematoma, it will repair itself after a few days.

Inflammation of the skin around the nail – This may be caused by yeast that infects the cuticle. There are topical creams that can cure these yeast infections.

To be certain about the symptoms and signs that you notice on your nails, it is best to be diagnosed by a medical doctor.

A proper diagnosis will result in a proper treatment plan. Pain, inflammation and infection can be addressed properly. The treatment regimen for nail fungus or any other nail infection must be followed religiously since these diseases tend to recur.

Medicines for these different conditions can be sourced from your local drugstores or online stores.