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How to Avoid Toenail Fungus

How to Avoid Toenail Fungus

Although sandal season might be wrapping up, there’s no good time of year to deal with toenail fungus. In fact, if your fungal infection escalates, it can make closed-toes shoes uncomfortable, a major problem during winter weather.

The good news? If you do get toenail fungus, Christopher Vittori, DPM, Ameet Thakrar, DPM, and our team here at Vittori Foot & Ankle Specialist can treat it right at our offices in Homer Glen and New Lenox, Illinois. 

The even better news? You can take steps to avoid a fungal infection in the first place. Here are four ways to avoid toenail fungus. 

No. 1: Keep your feet clean and dry

Fungus loves damp environments. To make it harder for a fungal infection to take root, keep your feet clean and dry. If you know you have sweaty feet, keeping a clean pair of socks with you can help. That way, when you feel your feet getting damp, you can make the swap. 

Similarly, when you’re shopping for shoes and socks, do so with your toenails in mind. Sweat-absorbing socks and breathable footwear can make a big difference. 

No. 2: Wear shoes in public areas

Toenail fungus is contagious. While walking around a dry area poses a limited risk, fungus can survive on a damp floor, waiting to infect an unwitting passerby.

If you go to any places with wet floors — like pools and gym locker rooms — keep your feet in shoes. A pair of lightweight flip-flops or slides can be the barrier you need against toenail fungus. 

No. 3: Rotate your shoes

To make sure your footwear doesn’t become a fungal breeding ground, give your shoes ample time to dry after each use. Rotate between shoes to ensure you don’t wear the same pair two days in a row. And if you have a history of toenail fungus, you may want to consider sprinkling your shoes with an antifungal powder. 

To further prevent formerly worn footwear from becoming a problem, make sure you wash your socks in hot water after each use. 

No. 4: Clip your toenails straight across

Fungus can thrive under your toenails, and an infection can take hold easier on the fragile skin of your nail beds. To keep your toenails healthy, trim them regularly and cut them straight across. 

These steps can all help you avoid toenail fungus. But if you do end up with an infection, don’t hesitate to call Vittori Foot & Ankle Specialist or schedule an appointment online today. We can provide the treatment you need to get rid of the fungus as quickly as possible. 

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