Relieving Your Foot Care Stress and Concerns

When you’re feeling lousy or have inexplicable pain, not knowing the reason behind it can make the discomfort seem that much worse. However, before you fall into the paranoid well of online diagnosis, allow us—the professionals—the chance to answer your questions and relieve your concerns. Our extensive knowledge and experience with all types of foot-related problems not only can help you understand your pain, but also can convince you to get the proper treatment. Come see what we have to offer.

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  • When Will my Toenail Fungus Go Away?

    If you don’t treat toenail fungus, it won’t just go away, and it will probably get worse. It festers under your nail, causes it to turn yellow and thick, and eventually can make it disintegrate or separate from the nail bed.

    There are topical treatments to use in cream, lotion, or polish form. These may work if the fungus hasn’t settled deeply under the nail, but they need to be applied faithfully for weeks or months—as long as it takes for the new nail to grow out.

    Oral medications are the most proven method, but they also can take months and come with risk of liver problems. You need to be tested periodically to make sure liver function has not been impaired.

    At Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates in Florida, we offer laser treatment for fungal toenails. It focuses concentrated laser beams at the level of the fungus that heat it up and destroy it without damaging surrounding tissue. It’s a simple, painless treatment, free of known side effects, and may be the answer to your embarrassing toenails. Call our Daytona Beach office at (386) 274-3336 or one of our other locations to find out more.

  • What causes an Ingrown toenail?

      To figure out what causes an ingrown toenail, look first to your footwear. Shoes that pinch the front of your feet or press against the tops or sides of your big toes can cause the nails to grow into the skin. This can also happen if you trim the nails to a rounded shape, instead of letting the sides grow out straight above the skin. Some people have naturally curved nails that make them more susceptible to ingrowing. If the nail is injured in some way, it may not grow out correctly from the matrix where it forms. Even your posture or your foot biomechanics can put pressure on the edge of your toe.

    When the nail grows into the skin, the soft tissue can become irritated, red and inflamed. If the skin is pieced at all, bacteria can enter the wound and infect it. Sometimes pockets of pus form, causing even more pressure and pain. In short, ingrown toenails are no fun!

    To get relief, call Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates in Florida at one of these locations: Daytona Beach—(386) 274-3336, Edgewater—(386) 957-4818, Orange City—(386) 775-2281, Palm Coast—(386) 586-7373, or Port Orange—(386) 788-6333.

  • Why is my toenail black?

      Black toenails are usually caused by blood pooling beneath the nail. You can get this injury by running in shoes that don’t fit correctly. If your shoe is too short, your nail will constantly be hitting the front of it—especially if you haven’t trimmed it in a while. Sweaty feet will slide around more in the shoe, too, again bumping into the front. Make sure you wear shoes that are a half inch longer than your longest toe, and socks that keep your feet dry.

    Black toenails can also occur with an injury to the toe, like dropping something heavy on it. A subungual hematoma with pressure and pain may need to be drained (don’t try this yourself!). In addition, dark toenails could indicate a fungal infection, or in rare cases, a malignant melanoma. This is a fast-growing cancer, so any time you see a dark spot, be sure to have your toenails checked.

    The podiatrists at Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates can diagnose and treat all your toenail problems. Call us at (386) 788-6333 in Port Orange, (386) 957-4818 in Edgewater, or one of the other locations and numbers on our website.

  • What’s causing my toenail fungus?

    Toenail fungus causes include molds, yeast, and various types of fungi. Most cases are caused by a group of fungi called dermatophytes. These small organisms enter your toes through tiny breaks in the skin or a separation between the nail and the tissue underneath. Because they thrive in places that are warm and moist—like public pools, showers, and saunas—they spread easily. Wearing shoes and socks that keep your feet damp from sweat allow them to multiply, causing your disfigured nails.

    Toenail fungus usually won’t go away on its own. Topical and oral medications are available, but at Atlantic Foot & Ankle Associates we have had good success treating them with laser therapy, which is faster, painless, and free of any known side effects. Check out our Florida Laser Center site for more information, or send for our free book, No More Ugly Toenails, by filling out the request form online or calling our Daytona Beach office at (386) 274-3336.

  • Will the nail fungus come back after Laser Therapy?

    Your nail infection should improve following treatment but you will need to continue with home care techniques to reduce recurrence of the infection as advised by your doctor. There is a chance of re-infection because the fungus is present everywhere in the environment, for example, in damp areas such as public swimming pools. Certain medical conditions can make re-infection more likely such as diabetes and peripheral vascular disease.  

  • Are there any clinical studies for Laser Therapy?

    Traditional treatments such as nail trimming, topical medicine, oral medicine or nail removal have significant drawbacks. Nail trimming doesn’t treat the fungus. Topical medicines need to be applied for 12 months and have a low success rate. Oral medicines are taken for 3 months but can cause liver or kidney problems. Our FDA approved Laser Therapy Treatment is a quick, easy, safe, effective procedure that treats the fungus at the source with a success rate of 85%. 

  • What you can expect from Laser Therapy?

    The treatment involves passing the laser beam over the infected nails and surrounding skin. Your physician will repeat this several times until enough energy has reached the nail bed. Your nail will feel warm during the treatment.

    Treatment Session All toes on both feet are treated for the best chance of success.  The GenesisPlus laser procedure will take 15-30 minutes.
       
    Number of  Treatments Most patients only need three treatments, but some need more if they have severe cases of toenail fungus.
       
    Before the Procedure          While it is important to remove nail polish, decoration and jewelry prior to treatment, you can reapply nail polish 24 hours after treatment.  You can resume your normal activities immediately following the treatment.
       
    During the Procedure  Most patients describe the procedure as being comfortable with a small hot pinch at the end that resolves quickly.  No pain medication is needed and most people find the treatment very easy to tolerate. 
       
    After the Procedure Immediately following the procedure your nail may feel warm for a few minutes. The majority of patients can  resume normal activities right away.
       
    Long Term            You won’t notice anything immediately following treatment. However, as your nail grows out, the new nail growth should be clear. Toenails grow slowly, especially nails infected with fungus, so it may take 6 - 12 months for your toenail to clear.

     

  • Where does nail infection come from?

    Nail infection is caused by contact with dermatophytes which are everywhere in our environment. Common sources of infection include  swimming pools, public showers, gyms and nail spas. Tight fitting shoes and nail trauma can also lead to infection. Genetic susceptibility, poor health and increasing age are also factors that increase the risk of nail infection.

  • What are the symptoms of nail infection?

      You may suffer from nail infection (onychomycosis) if you have one or more of the following symptoms:

    • Discolored nails
    • Yellow streaks under the nail
    • Distorted or thickened nails
    • Brittle, crumbly or ragged nail
    • Nails separated from the underlying skin
    • Buildup of debris (nail fragments, skin) under the nail
    • White spots or streaks on the nail surface

  • How does Laser Therapy compare to other toenail fungus treatments?

    Traditional treatments such as nail trimming, topical medicine, oral medicine or nail removal have significant drawbacks. Nail trimming doesn’t treat the fungus. Topical medicines need to be applied for 12 months and have a low success rate. Oral medicines are taken for 3 months but can cause liver or kidney problems. Our FDA approved Laser Therapy Treatment is a quick, easy, safe, effective procedure that treats the fungus at the source with a success rate of 85%.