Category Archives: Nail Care

Are Your Toenails Yellow, Thick and Crumbly?

Have you noticed that your toenails have started to turn yellow, brittle, crumbly or thick recently?

These are the most common and visible signs of a toenail fungal infection.

Who is most at risk?

You are most likely to develop a fungal nail infection if you:

  • Wear artificial nails
  • Have spa pedicures or shellac nails done at a nail salon
  • Swim in a swimming pool
  • Trauma to the toenail
  • Wear tight, narrow, enclosed footwear on a daily basis
  • Have diabetes or a condition that causes poor circulation

 

What does it look like?

The infection may affect part of the nail, the entire nail and can often spread to other nails also. Signs may include:

  • Discolouring of the nail
  • Yellow or white streaks on the nail
  • Brittleness or crumbling of the tip of the nail
  • Thickening of the nail
  • A distorted nail
  • Nail lifting from the nail bed

                   

 

How do I know if I have a fungal infection?

As the appearance of a fungal nail infection can often be mistaken for other conditions, the best way to confirm the diagnosis is with a podiatrist. They will often take scrapings and a nail sample and send it off to a lab for it to be examined under a microscope for signs of any fungi.

 

 

How is it treated?

There are many different treatment options for this condition ranging from topical anti fungal treatments to PACT treatments to oral tablets. To determine the most suitable treatment option for you, please be sure to discuss this with your podiatrist.

If you are concerned about the appearance of your toenails or worried you may have a fungal nail infection, please call us on (03) 8645 9800 or book in online with one of our friendly podiatrists today!

Psoriasis of the Nails

Psoriasis of the nails can affect the fingernails and also the toe nails, in most cases it is mild and doesn’t cause much of a problem for the person affected, but in some cases can be a bigger issue for people.

Psoriasis of nails can affect each individual to a different degree but can cause:

Pitting of nails – the surface of the nail can get pits, making the surface of the nail look un-even and rough.
Onycholysis can occur – the nail can become detached
Subungual hyperkeratosis – a chalky property can accumulate under the nail
Discolouration – the nail can change in colour due to the psoriasis, it can be more white in some cases and in some cases can look yellow
Brittle – the nails can become more brittle and fragile – in some cases can cause the nail to break
Onychauxic – the nail can become thicker, making it harder to cut and in some cases more uncomfortable in the shoe

Psoriasis of nails can be often confused as a fungal nail infection as many characteristics are the same, but in addition nails affected by psoriasis have an increased risk of developing a fungal nail infection (onychomycosis). This is due to the nature of the nail having less of a barrier.

If your nails are looking a bit different or have never looked normal, come in for an appointment with one of our friendly podiatrists who will assess the nails and advise on the best treatment plan for you and see what is causing your nails to look the way they do.

 

Call us on 8645 9888 if you have any concerns or,

Reference:
http://www.papaa.org/further-information/nail-psoriasis

What Can Keryflex Do For You?

Do you have a nail that doesn’t grow very well, is short and doesn’t look like a normal nail or do you have a fungal nail that isn’t looking nice and is brittle and discoloured?

Keryflex is an option to patients at our clinic who have damaged nails due to trauma that don’t grow well or fungal nails that are short, or discoloured and cause a bit of grief when wearing open toed shoes.

During your appointment the nail is cleared and cut and the keryflex is applied. There is an instant change with one keryflex application during an appointment.

Keryflex can help with the improvement of the nail appearance or help with nail growth in some cases. ​

Results may vary, but it is a great option for those wanting to get their toes out this summer and and want help with insecurity about what their toenails look like.

Keryflex is a safe option, it is instant, durable and allows the real nail under the keryflex to grow. It is not a long term solution and will need to be replaced depending on the activities you are participating in, the footwear you wear, and the rate of growth of your nail.

If you want to get your feet in open toed shoes this summer, book in for an appointment to get your toe nails assessed and see if keryflex is the right treatment for you.

You can call us on 8645 9888 or,

Why Is It Important To Wear Thongs Around The Pool And In The Showers?

With pool and holiday season finally upon us it’s important to make sure that we are pulling out the thongs from the back of the cupboard to avoid picking up any nasties.

‘So what exactly are these nasties?’  you might ask.

Well, I am referring to those dreaded fungal infections of the skin and nails known as tinea pedis and onychomycosis.

Fungal infections will typically occur as a result of showering and walking on warm damp surfaces that fungus loves to breed on. By wearing thongs we reduce the chances of this occurring.

Typically it has been found that those who swim and walk around barefoot are more prone to developing fungal infection. If you think that you may have picked up a fungal infection recently you may notice the following symptoms occurring:

  • Itchy skin
  • Flaky skin especially between the toes and the balls of the feet
  • Small red dots which sometimes may appear as if filled with pus
  • Disclouration of your nails to a yellowish/ brown colour
  • Increased thickness to the nails

So if you or someone you know is about to travel and they enjoy the pools, this summer make sure you remind them to wear thongs or shoes to avoid developing a fungal infection.

Or if you have developed  fungal infection but are unsure about the best way to fight it off, book in today for an assessment.

 

This article was written by Lauren, one of our skilled Podiatrists. To book in with Lauren either give us a call or book online and select ‘Lauren’ as your practitioner.

You can call us on 8645 9888 or,

Daily Foot Care

 

Our feet are one of the most important parts of the body, and often, are one of the most neglected. Daily care is often over looked in our busy lives however, looking after our feet is not as hard as it may appear. Here are a few essential ways you can care for your feet.

 

  1. FOOTWEAR

Wearing inappropriate footwear that is tight, narrow, flexible and made of poor quality materials, over time, leaves our feet at risk of injury. High heels, ballet flats and thongs are examples of some such shoes. Some examples of foot pathology be seen in long term use of these types of shoes include the development of corns, callus, bunions and clawed toes.

Wearing shoes with the right characteristics is essential. These characteristics include:

  • Wide and deep toe box to accommodate the toes and forefoot. This also allows room for the foot to expand and retract as it travels through the gait cycle.
  • Enclosed heel with firm heel counter. This provides support and control to the heel and ankle, improving stability and alignment of the lower limb and foot.
  • Straps, buckles, velcro and laces aid in securing the shoe to your foot, making walking an easier more efficient process for your body.
  • Firm outer sole with adequate tread. This provides stability and traction on the ground as you walk.
  • Soft inner sole with arch support as required. This provides comfort and support to the foot.

 

  1. GENERAL MAINTENANCE
  • Maintaining your nails at an appropriate length will reduce the risk of cuts and scratches to your skin, as well as improving hygiene.
  • Wash and dry your feet thoroughly. This will also improve hygiene and skin health. Skin that is left dirty and with excessive moisture is at risk of fungal infections. Take care to dry thoroughly between toes as this can be a problem area.
  • Moisturising your feet will also reduce dryness and fissuring, helping maintain your skin as an effective barrier to the outside environment.

 

  1. SEEK HELP WHEN REQUIRED

If your experience any foot pain, difficulty caring for your own feet or other concerns, book a regular appointment with your Podiatrist.

 

To book with one of our skilled podiatrists, you can call us on 8645 9800 or,

Why Choose Medical Pedicure Instead of a Salon Pedicure?

Salon pedicures are seen as glamorous and something to treat yourself to, but on the contrary, can cause a few issues that are not to the benefit of keeping your feet healthy.

These include, fungal nails, tinea, warts and in some cases, bacterial skin infections such as cellulitis.

The causes of these infections are not properly sterilizing equipment, the same instruments and nail files are being used on every second person that walks into the salon, and you do not know what the person before you may have wrong with their skin or nails. They could be suffering from tinea that they got at their local pool or a fungal nail infection that they got from someone at the nail salon from a previous appointment. In addition, the foot spas are breeding grounds for these fungal, viral and bacterial infections. If they are cleaned properly this reduces the risk of contracting an infection but it is not certain that this sterilization happens.

What should you do?

Our skilled podiatrists offer a service called Medical Pedicure. We use sterilized equipment, a hot towel that is only used for you and thrown away afterwards and it is all done in a safe environment with the luxuries included. We do not use nail polish as this has the potential to harbor fungal infections.

If you are wondering what a Medical Pedicure is in more detail and what type of Medical Pedicure would suit you best, have a look at our medical pedicure website – http://medicalpedicure.com.au/services/

You can call us on 8645 9888 if you have any questions or you want to book an appointment. Otherwise you can,

 

What I, As A Podiatrist, Think About Cheap Nail Salons

Going to the nail salon is seen as a glamorous thing to do when going to an event or treating yourself to some pampering. While going to the podiatrist is seen as an unglamorous thing to do and something you have to do rather than want to do.

But on the contrary, going to an appointment at the podiatrist is going into a clean environment with the use of sterile instruments where your individual needs will be assessed and met.

Unfortunately, due to poor regulations in some cheaper nail salons, it is highly likely that unsterile instruments are being used. These instruments that are not sterilized are also being used on other people attending the salon on a daily basis. It is unknown what the person before you could have wrong with the skin on their feet or their toe nails. For example, they could have a wart, tinea or a fungal nail infection and in some cases a bacterial infection.

In addition, foot spas are a breeding ground for bacteria and fungus so if the spa is not cleaned between clients or cleaned thoroughly, there is greater risk of contracting a bacterial infection or a fungal nail or skin infection. ​

 

If you would like a clean, sterile pedicure, try Podiatry HQ’s Medical Pedicure, where we will assess all nail, skin and foot conditions and help you with your needs.

Take a closer look at the Medical Pedicure website.

If you have any issues regarding your lower legs and feet, don’t hesitate to come in for treatment and pampering, all rolled into one.

HICAPS is available at our clinic and your private health insurance can be used to claim against our services!

 

This article was written by Alex, one of our skilled Podiatrists. To book in with Alex either give us a call or book online and select ‘Alexandra’ as your practitioner.

You can call us on 8645 9888 or,

Why Are My Nails Getting Thick?

Are you having issues with thick nails, and you’re not sure why they are getting thick?

Thick nails are a common issue that many podiatrists see in their clinics. At Podiatry HQ it is a condition we see on a weekly basis.

There are a few reasons that your nails could get thick, these include;

Trauma, trauma can be a cause of thick toe nails, either from tight footwear, dropping something on your foot, stabbing your toe or even from running and the toe hitting against the shoe during your run. The repetitive stress causes trauma within the nail and causes it to thicken.

Also

Nail fungus, nail fungus is a common cause of thick nails, as the fungus causes the nail to become thick, brittle and discoloured, in some cases. Nail fungus can be picked up from nail salons, public pools and showers.

In some cases, thick nails can cause pain or be unsightly and embarrassing for some individuals.

 

If you are having issues with thick nails, come in to see one of our friendly podiatrists who will assess your nails and diagnose the cause. From here a treatment plan will be made that best suits your needs.

You can call us on 8645 9800 to book your assessment or,

 

Reference:

http://www.md-health.com/images/OLD00472/0ea992fbe9c7f73fc80d3ad43fe0d9b1–thick-toenails-toenail-fungus-treatment.jpg

How To Care For Your Feet In A Daily Routine

It is important to care for your feet, and getting into a routine is the best way.

Here are a few tips to help care for your feet daily:

  • ​Wash your feet daily
  • Dry your feet thoroughly – especially between the toes
  • Apply an emollient to your feet daily but not between the toes
  • Check your feet daily
  • Inspect any changes
  • use a pumice stone on hard and dry skin
  • Wear thongs in public showers and around pools
  • Wear a new pair of socks each day
  • If your socks get wet they should be changed for a new clean pair
  • Wear appropriate footwear – that is, the correct size and provides good support with enough width in the shoe.
  • Make an appointment to see a podiatrist if you are getting any pain or have any concerns that you want to get checked with your feet.

 

Doing these different things to care for your feet will help prevent issues from arising.

If you have any issues or are wishing to get some advice on your feet don’t hesitate to call as at Podiatry HQ, our friendly staff are waiting for your call on 03 8645 9888 or

Does Nail Polish Affect My Toe Nails?

Nail polished toes look great but is nail polish really good for your nails and your health?

Nail polish can affect the nails in a few ways these include;

  • Discolouration of nails, turns the nails yellow when left on too long.
  • Doesn’t allow the nail to breath, which can cause a breeding ground for bacteria.
  • If a contaminated nail polish is applied to the nails or contaminated instruments are used at a nail salon, it can cause the nail to become fungal and infected. The nail polish can hold and spread the fungal infection through the nail.
  • Nail polish can weaken the nails.

 

It is important to check your nails and distinguish between discolouration due to nail polish and discolouration due to a fungal nail infection.

If you are worried about the health of your nails, don’t hesitate to book an appointment to get your nails checked. It is best to start treating fungal nails straight away before the infection spreads to multiple nails.

Call us on 03 8645 9888 to book an assessment with one of our skilled podiatrists or

Reference
http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/2016/06/16/why-you-should-give-your-toenails-a-break-from-polish-in-winter/