Among the known toenail diseases, toenail fungus which is scientifically known as onychomycosis which can come in the form of either yellow, white or black toenail fungus, is probably one of the most dreaded primarily because of its embarrassing appearance and the foul odor that accompanies it. But what most people do not know is that this disease is more than just a cosmetic problem. It is a disease that can disrupt normal day-to-day activities because of the pain and discomfort that it brings. In fact, people suffering from onychomycosis find it hard to perform normal human activities that require the use of the toes such as walking or running.
Toenail fungus is caused by a type of fungus known as dermatophytes which can be found in warm and damp places such as public showrooms and swimming pool grounds. Exposure to dermatophytes is not enough though for a person to acquire toenail fungus. If you are relatively healthy and your immune system is working well, then your body can probably resist an attack of dermatophytes.
Still, the best defense against toenail fungus is proper hygiene which is often neglected especially by men. Some people are more prone to dermatophytes infection and therefore, should be extra careful when going to public places where dermatophytes are believed to be abundant. These people include those above 60 years of age and those with diabetes, psoriasis and leukemia.
There are several types of toenail fungus and they differ in appearance as well as on severity. The basic types of toenail fungus are:
Distal Subungual Onychomycosis – This type of nail fungus is characterized by an infection that occurs in between the tip of the nail and the skin and along the side of the nail. People with this type of toenail fungus has nails that are yellow in color.
White Superficial Onychomycosis – This type of toenail fungus is called as such because it is characterized by white and powdery specs on the surface of the nails. Apart from the discoloration, the afflicted nails also become flaky and brittle. This type of toenail infection is the most curable among all types of toenail fungus.
Proximal Subungual Onychomycosis – This is the rarest type of toenail fungus. It is characterized by a white or yellow spots on the the cuticle then spreads. This type of toenail fungus is also highly curable.
Black Toenail Fungus – As the name suggest, this type of onychomycosis by the toenail turning black in color.
Through good hygiene, you can prevent getting yellow, white or black toenail fungus