Fungal nail infections, also known as onychomycosis, are a common problem that can affect anyone. While they may seem like a harmless cosmetic issue, they can actually lead to several complications if left untreated. In this article, we’ll discuss the risks and prevention strategies associated with fungal nail infection complications.
One of the most significant complications of untreated fungal nail infections is the risk of spreading the infection to other areas of the body. Fungal infections thrive in warm and moist environments, which can include shoes, socks, and other areas of the feet. If the infection is not treated, it can spread to other toes, the skin on the feet, or even to other parts of the body. In severe cases, it can lead to a systemic infection, which can be life-threatening.
Another risk associated with untreated fungal nail infections is the development of secondary bacterial infections. When the nail becomes thickened and distorted, it can create an opening in the skin, which can allow bacteria to enter. This can lead to cellulitis, a painful and potentially dangerous bacterial infection of the skin and soft tissues.
Finally, fungal nail infections can also lead to significant discomfort and pain, especially when walking or standing for extended periods. In some cases, the nail may become so thickened and distorted that it can cause pressure and pain inside the shoe.
Prevention strategies for fungal nail infection complications include maintaining good foot hygiene, wearing shoes that fit properly and allow for adequate ventilation, and treating any underlying medical conditions that may increase the risk of fungal infections, such as diabetes or immune system disorders. Additionally, seeking prompt medical attention for any signs of fungal nail infection, such as discoloration, thickening, or distortion of the nail, can help prevent complications.
In conclusion, fungal nail infections can lead to several complications if left untreated, including the spread of infection to other areas of the body, secondary bacterial infections, and significant discomfort and pain. Taking steps to prevent and promptly treat fungal nail infections can help reduce the risk of these complications and maintain healthy and comfortable feet.
Related: Fungal nail treatment