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Expert Nail Fungus Treatment Options

Nail fungus can be an embarrassing condition that can cause your toenails to become discolored, thickened, and brittle. It can make it difficult to feel confident about the appearance of your toes and, if left untreated, can even cause pain. Fortunately, there is help available at Denton Podiatry.

Don't accept nail fungus as an inevitable part of life - there are treatments that can help you get back to having healthy, attractive nails. Contact or schedule an appointment online now to start the journey to healthy nails and greater self-confidence.


Nail Fungus Q & A

Fungus Toenail

What is nail fungus?

Nail fungus is a common infection that can affect both toenails and fingernails. It can be contracted in public places such as showers, locker rooms, and pools. The extent of the infection can vary from one nail to all of the toenails and skin.

Symptoms of nail fungus include:

⦿ Thickened nails
⦿ Distortion in nail shape
⦿ Nails that are brittle or crumbly
⦿ Possible ingrown nails
⦿ A dark color in portions of the nail
⦿ Foul odor

While some cases of nail fungus are mild and may not cause any visible symptoms, others can be quite severe and require professional medical care. Symptoms of nail fungus can include discoloration of the nail, thickening and brittleness of the nail, yellow or white patches, and loss of the nail. In more severe cases, there may also be discomfort, pain, and a foul-smelling odor emanating from the affected nail. If you believe you may have a case of nail fungus, it is important to consult with a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.

What are some options to treat toenail fungus?

Numerous over-the-counter treatments, such as ointments, creams, and lotions, promise to provide relief from nail fungus. However, these products are not as strong or effective as prescription medications, which are designed to eliminate the source of the infection.


At-home treatments may be helpful, but typically won't suffice for an active infection. Therefore, consulting a doctor and taking prescribed medications is likely the best option to eliminate nail fungus.

Medications play a role in treating nail fungus, and are considered one of the most effective treatments by the American Podiatric Medical Association. Antifungal drugs eliminate the infection from within, but they aren’t the best option for everyone due to potential side effects.

Fungus Toenail

Prescription strength topical treatments is also an option. This approach works by applying a layer of medication to the nail and surrounding skin. While it can be effective, medicated nail polish can take as long as one year to eliminate the fungal infection. 


Dr. Barber helps many people move beyond these infections to feel better about the appearance and health of their toenails and nail beds. Long term solutions also include treating the possible fungal skin infections in the foot and ankle area.

At Denton Podiatry, toenail fungus can be treated with pills, creams, topical applications, or custom-made topical medications. Dr. Barber does not advise laser treatments due to unsatisfactory results reported in recent studies.

I have a mild nail fungus. Should I go have a pedicure?

Nail Pedicure

Mild nail fungus, such as yellow or white spots on the nails, is usually not a problem when getting a pedicure. However, the real risk comes from the improper sterilization of instruments used during the treatment.

If the nail salon does not properly clean and disinfect the tools after each use, the fungus can be transferred from one person to the next. This can cause the fungus to spread, leading to more severe nail fungus infections for the person who receives the treatment. To avoid this, it is important to make sure that the nail salon is following proper sterilization protocols when providing treatments.

Why can't the immune system kill off toenail fungus?

Though you may be in good health, your body can't get rid of a toenail fungus. It thrives in humid, dark, and damp areas, and a single spore is enough to begin an infection. The immune system is unable to target and eradicate the fungus due to its connection to the blood vessels and circulatory system. Therefore, the body is not able to eliminate it.

What can I do to prevent nail fungus?

Dr. Barber

Once your fungus is gone, you’ll want to take steps to prevent reinfection. These tips can help you avoid new fungal infections in your toenails and the skin on your feet. 

⦿ Trim nails carefully, avoiding curved shapes at the sides of the nail
⦿ Choose footwear that is comfortable and breathable
⦿ If you’ve had nail fungus, throw out or disinfect the shoes you wore before treatment

⦿ Wear absorbent socks and change them frequently if your feet sweat
⦿ Always wear shower shoes when walking in public showers or changing rooms
⦿ Wash your hands and feet regularly and thoroughly

These steps can dramatically reduce your risk of fungal nail infections. If you suspect you have a fungal nail infection or need treatment, schedule an appointment at Denton Podiatry online or by phone today. 

What antifungal solutions do you recommend?

Dr. Barber currently recommends Tolcylen and Formula 7 as the main topical solutions dispensed at the practice. Formula 3 is also utilized and considered effective, but only used for less severe infections.

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