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Toenail fungus is an uncomfortable and sometimes embarrassing condition. The fungus thrives in the warm, moist, and dark environment that surrounds your toes. It is a common condition that starts off as a white or yellow spot on, under, or to the side of your toenail. As the fungus grows deeper into the nail, it may cause the nail to peel, chip, or crumble away. One or more of your toes can be affected at the same time.
How Laser Treatment for Toenail Fungus Works
Some foot doctors offer laser treatment for toenail fungus as a fast and effective way to get rid of this infection. In the podiatry office, carbon dioxide lasersb b are used to treat the affected toenails. The treatment only takes a few minutes. No anesthesia is needed and you will be able to drive yourself home. During the treatment, your doctor will move a laser across the surface of your toenail and around the edges of your toenail. The light waves emitted by the laser disturb the growth of the fungus.
Who Can Get Laser Treatment for Toenail Fungus
Most people with a fungal infection of the toenail can receive laser treatment to eliminate the infection. If you have diabetes or peripheral neuropathy, your doctor will determine whether you are a good candidate for the laser treatment. Most people only need one laser treatment session, but toenail fungus can come back in the same toe or another toe at a later time.
What to Expect from Laser Treatment for Toenail Fungus
After a laser treatment session for toenail fungus, your toenail will continue to grow. As your toenail slowly grows, you will notice that the new growth appears as a healthy color and that the surface is even rather that ridged or chipped. You will notice a gradual lessening of the annoying fungal symptoms. Your toes may itch less and there will be less of the tingly, hot, or burning sensations around the toenail.
Caring for Your Toenails After Laser Treatment
Good foot hygiene is essential to preventing a new fungal infection of your toenail. Avoid walking in locker rooms or around swimming pools with bare feet. Keep your toenails carefully trimmed. Cut the nails straight across. Consider using a clear nail polish on your toenails to help prevent a fungal infection. Keep your feet dry and change your socks as soon as they get sweaty or wet.