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Family Foot Care & Surgery, LLC

Does Nail Polish Help or Hinder Fungal Nails?

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Nail polish effects fungal toenail infections

Nail polish is a fun way to “dress up” your toes. It allows you to add patterns, bright colors, and more to your lower limbs. Unfortunately, nail polish and fungal nails don’t mix. If you’re struggling with a fungal infection, painting over it with polish may be hindering your recovery rather than helping it.​

Fungal toenails are unsightly. The way the infection distorts and discolors the hard keratin embarrasses many people, leaving them looking for ways to cover it up. Many people simply don’t remove their socks and shoes around others. Other people look to hide the yellowing and spruce up their nails with colorful polish. Unfortunately, that’s not helpful for your nail at all, and may prolong the problem.

Fungal infections do not go away on their own, and they’re highly contagious. Covering up your nails with colorful polish can help you forget about the discoloration, but it doesn’t treat the issue. In fact, it can seal the pathogens in your nail and allow them to thrive. Underneath the bright colors, the infection is worsening. On top of that, you’ve now contaminated your nail polish and brush—which can possibly allow the fungus to spread to other toes.

It’s much better to skip the polish altogether and treat your toenails properly to eliminate the problem. You have plenty of options for this, from topical medications to oral medicines to laser therapy. If you simply can’t go without your nail polish, however, there are some medicated lacquers out there that may be available for you.

Fungal toenails are a problem that won’t get better if you cover and ignore them. Don’t let your nail polish make your infection worse. Contact our specialists at Family Foot Care & Surgery, L.L.C. for more information or an appointment to care for your infected nails today. You can reach us through our website or by calling our Connecticut offices: (203) 876-7736 for Milford, or (203) 288-4055 for Hamden. 

Dr. Sanjay V. Patel
Dr. Patel has over 20 years of experience in the field of podiatric medicine and podiatric surgery.
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