Skin Care and Toenail FAQs
When you’re living with heel or foot pain, you don’t want to wait for answers. Get help fast by looking through this list of frequently asked questions with answers from our Plano podiatrist.
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How Long Does Athlete's Foot Last?
Athlete’s foot is a common fungal infection that can cause redness, scaling skin, itching, dryness, and blisters. It is caused by a fungus that grows in a dark, warm, and humid environment, and it usually begins between your toes. You are at risk if you frequently have sweaty feet and wear damp socks or tight fitting shoes. How long athlete’s foot lasts depends on what you do about it.
This fungal infection is contagious and can last for months or even longer if it is not treated properly. The fungus can be passed on through towels, clothing, and bed sheets, so you can keep getting re-infected. The fungus also thrives in environments such as public showers, pools, and changing rooms. Going barefoot in these areas can increase your risk of re-exposure. Without treatment the infection may spread to your feet, toenails, hands, and groin, and the symptoms can worsen. With prompt treatment the infection usually clears up in a couple of weeks.
If you have noticed the symptoms mentioned above and have not been treated, contact Dr. Gene Reister before the infection worsens and becomes painful. Call Richardson Podiatry Associates in Richardson, TX at (972) 690-5374.
Can I Still Run with A Black Toenail?
Many runners are familiar with black toenails. While they can look alarming, most often they are not too painful and resolve on their own. It is usually okay to run with a black toenail, as long as you are wearing proper fitting shoes with adequate room in the toe box and thin, moisture-wicking socks.
This injury (also called subungual hematoma) develops from repetitive trauma or pressure on the toenail from rubbing against tight socks or bumping the front of your shoe. The capillaries and blood vessels under the nail break and blood pools under the nail, causing the discoloration. The old nail will most likely fall off over time and a new, healthy nail will grow back in.
There are times though, when the build up of fluid under the nail causes intense pressure and pain. Then we would encourage you to take a break from running and come in so Dr. Gene Reister can safely drain the fluid, relieve the pressure, treat the toenail to ward off infection, and help prevent it from reoccurring.
If you have a painful toenail or discoloration that is getting worse, it could be an infection that needs treatment. Contact Richardson Podiatry Associates in Richardson, TX at (972) 690-5374 for an appointment today.
Why are my Toenails Discolored?
We don’t often give much thought to our toes, but if you see toenail discoloration, this is a symptom that warrants your attention. There are several reasons for discolored nails. Most commonly, signs of white, yellow, or green often indicate a fungal infection. Yellow toenails however, can also be indicative of diabetes, a weakened immune system, yellow nail syndrome, and chronic leg swelling (lymphedema). Changes in color can be symptomatic of liver, kidney, heart, or lung conditions, while red or black nails often happen as a result of trauma—the color due to blood pooling under the nail.
In any case, it is wise to make an appointment with Richardson Podiatry Associates to diagnose what is causing the discoloration of your toenails. Some problems will get progressively worse without treatment, or you could have a serious underlying condition that needs to be addressed. Contact Dr. Gene Reister at our office in Richardson, TX by calling (972) 690-5374 today.