It has been said that there are only two seasons in Houston: boot season and sandal season. Spring comes early to our state, and that means many of you have already made the switch to foot-cooling sandals to handle the heat. Now that your feet are more visible, you might notice an abnormal nail coloration or brittleness that could indicate you’ve picked up toenail fungus.
It is easy to encounter this microorganism at public pool decks, splash pads, saunas, or showers, and the fungus is quick to invade any small opening in your skin. It has a heyday when your feet are closed up in sweaty shoes and socks, so you may have developed one over the winter months, too.
The organisms prefer warm, moist, dark conditions and grow quickly to spread from nails to skin and back again. This can make nail fungus and athlete’s foot unpleasant but fairly common bedfellows.
What can you do about this unwelcome visitor? If you catch it very early, when it’s just a small white or yellow spot on your nail, you may be able to treat it with one of the many antifungal creams or polishes available at your pharmacy.
Once the case is advanced, these products won’t help much, but there are oral antifungal medications you could try. Unfortunately, they can cause liver problems, so you will need to be monitored for the several months that you are taking them.
That’s why at Parker Foot & Ankle we like to use laser therapy for fungal nails. The treatments are quick, painless, and have no known side effects. Using a handheld pen-like appliance, we aim certain wavelengths of light to penetrate beneath the skin and nail to the fungal cells below. You know how the rays of the sun can make you feel warm even on chilly days? These laser light beams act in a similar way, radiating heat to the cells until they vaporize, without damaging other tissue around them.Ready to get your toes in shape for summer? Call Parker Foot & Ankle in Houston at (281) 497-2850 and our friendly staff will be happy to schedule an appointment to see if this remarkable treatment might be right for you. You can also schedule online, and while you are at it, request our free book about heel pain as well. Fill out the form and we’ll get your copy of When Your Heels Hurt...You Hurt All Over! in the mail to you without further obligation.