Does Toenail Fungus Ever Go Away on Its Own?

Why won't my nail fungus go away

Have you noticed something different about your toenails lately? Maybe a white or yellow area under your nail that wasn’t there before? It’s possible that you are dealing with toenail fungus.

While many people are affected by toenail fungus, the problem isn’t well understood by the general public. Most people with toenail fungus try to ignore it and hope it’ll go away. Unfortunately, that tactic won’t work. 

At Foot + Ankle Specialty Centers, our excellent providers, Payam Sarraf, DPM; Kate Kennedy, DPM; Katy Statler, DPM; Andrew Goodeill, DPM; Christopher Van Damme, DPM; Amelia Harris, DPM; and Sina Safar, DPM, want you to be as healthy and happy as possible. That’s why we want you to seek treatment for toenail fungus ASAP. 

Toenail fungus 101 

Onychomycosis is the technical name for the infection that affects the nail bed. It’s more common to have an infection under the toenails than the fingernails because the fungus that causes it is usually found in damp areas like pools and showers. It can also occur if you wear too-tight shoes often and perspire a lot. 

Fungal infections that occur in the feet, such as athlete’s foot, can lead to toenail infections, which is one reason why you should always treat the infection early. But you can get a toenail infection independent of any other kind of problem. That usually happens when the fungi that cause the infection find a way in through a crack in your nail. 

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You can prevent fungal infections by always wearing clean, dry socks and shoes and avoiding walking through a public pool or shower area without shoes to protect you. Also, avoid borrowing someone else’s toenail clippers, nail scrubber, or any other kind of personal item like these. 

The truth about treating toenail fungus 

While we have a tendency to see the beginnings of toenail fungus and hope we can clean it away with regular soap and water — or even that it might disappear on its own — that won’t work. If you ignore toenail fungus or don’t receive the proper treatment, it becomes more difficult to treat in the future. 

In addition, toenail fungus can cause many other side effects, such as 

  • Changes to the shape and color of the nail
  • Brittleness, crumbling, thickening, or peeling of the nail
  • Lifting the nail from the nail bed
  • Bad odors 

Also, over-the-counter treatments and home remedies often aren’t successful in treating this sort of issue. Most people require professional help in the form of antifungal medications, removal of part or all of the nail, and sometimes, laser treatment. 

If you avoid treating your toenail now, the infection can spread to your other nails, causing long-term issues. Even those who do get treatment often don’t see results right away. But don’t give up; it takes a long time for nails to grow, and you need to wait for the healthy nails to grow back before you see results. 

Don’t wait — get help for toenail fungus

Don’t wait to get help for toenail fungus problems. It never goes away on its own, and you will need professional treatment. 

Read more  Mayo Clinic Q and A: Toenail fungus often difficult to eliminate completely

Let us help you treat your toenail infection. Call us at one of our five convenient Arizona locations to make an appointment, or you can contact us online. Remember, the sooner you start treatment, the more likely you are to see positive outcomes. 

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About the Author: Tung Chi