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Fungal Infection Q&A (Fungal Infections)
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Fungal Infection Q&A

Skin Information .COM

Q: What are nail infections?

A: Fungus can infect the nails, eating away at the keratin in the nail, which gives the nail a yellow, thickened appearance. Normally, the nails are well protected from fungus, however, physical breaks, weakening of the immune system, constant exposure to dampness where fungus breed, or certain medical conditions make a fungal infection more likely than normal.

Q: What causes these infections?

A: Microscopic fungus called dermatophytes which live in moist warm areas such as showers, spas, the pool, or the gym are responsible for fungal infections.

Q: Do these fungi spread to internal organs?

A: No. They grow slowly, and while unsightly, do not pose any immediate health threats.

Q: Where can I find more information about fungal infections?

A: Visit fungalguide.ca for comprehensive information on fungal infections. Recommended articles include www.fungalguide.ca/basics/prevent_fungal_infections.html and www.fungalguide.ca/types/fungal_nail_infections.html.

Q: Does this mean that I can’t go to spas, or public pools?

A: No, you can reduce the risk of infections to a manageable level by taking appropriate precautions. Use shower shoes to protect your feet when using public showers. Use anti-fungal powders to dry off feet. At spas, ensure that their equipment is regularly sterilized as it can be a breeding ground for fungus.

Q: How else can I protect my feet?

A: Use sunscreen to protect your feet from UV rays, and help reduce the chance of fungal infections. Remember to use a sunscreen with 15 SPF or higher.

Q: When should I consult my doctor?

A: If your nails are discoloured or thickened you should contact your doctor for diagnosis and proper treatment.

Related:

dermatophytes,   fungal infections,   nail fungus,