Collingwood and nearby Wasaga Beach provide a prime vacation spot on the southern shore of Georgian Bay. Summer means paddling in the clear waters or enjoying a relaxing day on the sandy shore. When you strip off your socks and shoes for a fun time on the beach, though, you don’t want to be embarrassed by yellow, crumbly toenails. Follow these tips to prevent toenail fungus from ruining your vacation.
First of all, think clean and dry. Wash your feet and toes well each day, and dry thoroughly. Keep your toenails trimmed straight across and don’t pick at or cut the surrounding tissues—including your cuticles—because they form a barrier against infection. The dermatophytes that cause fungal nails will quickly take advantage of the slightest break in your skin.
Second, think air. Fungi thrive in moist places, which is why it is so easy to pick it up in public pools, showers and saunas. Wear flip-flops or shower shoes in these places to prevent contact. During the day, air your feet out occasionally if you can. If you have to keep your shoes on, wear socks that pull the moisture away from your skin. Try using antifungal powder or spray on your feet and in your shoes to head off an infection before it begins.
Finally, think safe nail care. Sterilize your tools with rubbing alcohol before and after a pedicure, and wash your hands after touching an infected nail before moving on to the next one. Toenail fungus can spread easily. Ladies, it is probably best not to use polish until your nail has healed, because it will hold in the moisture that fungi love.
Despite your best efforts to prevent toenail fungus, you may end up with an unsightly infection. Now what? Keep practicing good hygiene, but call Chiropodist Tony Abbott of Abbott Foot & Ankle Clinic for your next steps. Over-the-counter medications may not be enough to get rid of the problem. Let us help. You can reach our office in Collingwood, ON, at (705) 444-9929 or request an appointment on our website.