Fungal infection is one of the most common nail problems according to aesthetic and wellness expert Dr. Rhoda Espino. Also a consultant at Clara International, a skin care and wellness center, Dr. Espino says that a body that is not kept clean can become good breeding ground for fungi.
“Fungus usually grows in toenails because they are enclosed in the shoes, and, with moisture that fungi love, infection can develop. Fungus can grow on the skin and on the nails. If it’s on the nails, it’s going to be tough to get rid of it.”
Patients with fungal infections are treated with oral anti-fungal medications, and creams are applied to the infected area thrice a day for the next six months. The wellness expert, however, stresses that prevention is always better than cure. Fungal infections can be prevented by simply keeping the body, and in this case, the feet, clean and dry. “After taking a bath, don’t put on your socks and shoes right away. Make sure your feet are dry. There are also powders that you can use to keep moisture away from your feet.”
Hangnails are another very common problem. Though the name may seem to denote it, hangnails actually have more to do with the skin around the nail than with the fingernail itself—this condition refers to the dry, easily-torn tags of skin around the edges of a fingernail. Hangnails are generally not a cause for concern, although getting hangnails too often may lead to infections.
Because hangnails are caused by dryness, you can prevent them by moisturizing your hands, taking particular care of the skin on your tips. If you already have a hangnail, soften it with moisturizer and, using a clean nail cutter or nipper, clip off the ragged edges to prevent further damage. Apply antibacterial ointment if skin opened up. If the cut or tear is deep, use a band aid to cover it until it heals completely. Needless to say, it’s not wise to bite a hangnail or attempt to tear it off using your teeth or fingers.