There are four major types of nail fungus, otherwise known as Onychomycosis, which ultimately lead to toenail infections. The only way to truly know what types of nail fungus you have is to consult with your doctor. In order for your doctor to make a proper diagnosis, they will take a sample from your toenail, and have it tested in a lab.
Four Types of Toenail Fungus
Here is a list of the four different types of toenail fungus:
1: Distal Subungual Onychomycosis
This is the most common of all the types of toenail fungus. The symptoms begin with inflammation that doesn’t appear problematic, but it leads to the nail plate becoming separated from the nail bed. The nail becomes thick, and the gap between the nail plate the nail bed begins breeding mold and other bacteria. Left untreated, the nail begins taking on a yellow-ish brown color.
2: Endonyx Onychomycosis
The nail plate becomes milky white, but no other types of fungus are present. This discoloration allows for easy self-diagnosis as it spreads throughout the entire nail bed.
3: Proximal Subungual Onychomycosis
This type of toe nail fungus starts at the root and works its way toward the nail’s tip. Unlike other types of toenail fungus, this one starts right where the newly grown nail begins just behind the cuticle.
4: White Superficial Onychomycosis
This type of fungus begins with white speckles forming on the nail plate and, eventually the entire area becomes white. Unlike other types of toenail fungus, this particular one causes the nail plate to crumble and deteriorate as the keratin breaks down.
Why Treating Toenail Fungus is Imperative
Onychomycosis should not, under any circumstance, be left untreated. If left untreated, patients could experience infections falling within the following three categories:
- Dermatophytes: the most common of all the types of fungal infection.
- Non-dermatophyte molds: occurs when the nail bed or nail plate begins breaking down.
- Yeasts: these infections can invade nails that are left untreated despite not having anything to do, in particular, with the toe nail fungus.
How to Get Rid of Toenail Fungus
While there are a number of options to consider to treat toenail fungus, one of the most effective methods is laser removal. Home remedies are unreliable and might only provide temporary relief, while prescribed medications often come with side effects.