How a Fungal Infection Occurs

Typically fungal infections are caused by moisture and heat, which was noted previously. However, it is important to understand that it is easy to pick up fungi, especially if you are using communal showers, or changing rooms frequently, such as at a gym, or a pool. The other thing that most people do not realize is that they may already carry the fungus on their skin, and it is just waiting for the right environment where it will thrive, which is somewhere warm and moist.
Because we wear enclosed shoes, sweat often gets trapped in the heat, and this makes for the ideal place for fungus to grow and spread. Research has shown that areas where no shoes, or open shoes are worn, have far fewer toenail infections than places where closed toed shoes are common. If you wear closed toes for long periods of time, especially in wet or moist environments, you need to take extra precautions in order to avoid fungal infections.
When a fungus affects the toenail it typically will shelter under the tip of the nail and start to get a hold. The likelihood of a fungal infection increases significantly under the following circumstances, so to avoid this embarrassing, and gross problem, try to avoid the following situations:
Infections are more likely if the end of the nail has been damaged, or is already slightly separated from the end of the toe. This happens when you stub your toe, or if you wear shoes that do not fit right. So, get the sizes, and watch where you walk.
Infection is more likely if you are taking long-term tetracycline medication and then expose your toenails to sunlight – this is called photo-onycholysis, and is hard to avoid. However, if you are on this medication, consider wearing closed toed shoes out of doors.
If you have a condition such as diabetes or an immune deficiency. Staying healthy in all aspects is going to help you to keep your toenails healthier.
If you are elderly. Nails take longer to grow and longer to heal, making it easier for fungus to take room.
If you already have fungus multiplying between the toes, such as in the case when you have athlete’s foot.
If you do not do something to take care of a toenail infection, the fungus will very gradually spread towards the base of the nail and down the sides, loosening the nail from the underlying toe and filling the separated area with crumbly, yellowish-white gunk. The nail itself becomes thicker and yellowish brown in color, while this happens over years and months, it is very gross, and not good for your foot health, so do what you can to identify when you have an infection, and take the steps to treat it.