Where does toenail fungus come from?

Fungal toenails are caused by the same sorts of organisms (known as dermatophytes) that lead to fungal infections elsewhere, such as athlete’s foot, ringworm, or jock itch.

Toenail fungus is a hardy lot. They love warm, dark, wet surfaces and they feast on keratin, which is a critical component in hair, nails, and the outer layer of skin. Toenail fungus also can transfer from surface to surface through contact, and ultimately from person to person through direct or indirect means.

The fungi that infected your toenails may have come from wearing a sweaty pair of shoes, going barefoot in a shared space such as a pool or locker room, or sharing towels or socks without cleaning them thoroughly first. They could also be transferred from location to location on your body—if you already have athlete’s foot, for example, the fungi could make their way to the toenails through indirect contact.

Fungal toenails are unsightly and embarrassing, and they could pose medical risks if you have a condition such as diabetes. They can spread from toe to toe or person to person, and they won’t get better without medical intervention. If you have one or more fungal toenails, please contact our office. We offer advanced Noveon laser therapy, which has proven much more effective than traditional methods. Give us a call today for an appointment at 866.222.5177.