Aging is the most common risk factor for nail fungus for several reasons, including:
- Diminished blood circulation
- More years of exposure to fungi
- Nails may grow more slowly and thicken with age, making them more susceptible to infection
Nail fungus tends to affect men more often than it does women, particularly those with a family history of this infection.
Other factors that can increase your risk of developing nail fungus include:
Aug. 25, 2011
- Perspiring heavily
- Working in a humid or moist environment
- Having the skin condition psoriasis
- Wearing socks and shoes that hinder ventilation and don't absorb perspiration
- Walking barefoot in damp public places, such as swimming pools, gyms and shower rooms
- Having athlete's foot (tinea pedis)
- Having a minor skin or nail injury, a damaged nail, or another infection
- Having diabetes, circulation problems or a weakened immune system
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- Goldstein AO, et al. Onychomycosis. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Nail problems. American Podiatric Medical Association. http://www.apma.org/MainMenu/Foot-Health/Foot-Health-Brochures-category/Learn-About-Your-Feet/Nail-Problems.aspx. Accessed May 5, 2011.
- Kelechi TJ, et al. Four Vs for foot care. Vaseline, vegetable shortening, vinegar and Vicks VapoRub. Advance for Nurse Practitioners. 2004;12:67.
- Derby R, et al. Novel treatment of onychomycosis using over-the-counter mentholated ointment: A clinical case series. Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine. 2011;24:69.
- Habif TP. Nail diseases. In: Habif TP. Clinical Dermatology: A Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy. 5th ed. Edinburgh, U.K.; New York, N.Y.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do? about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-7234-3541-9..X0001-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-7234-3541-9&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Hay RJ, et al. Onychomycosis: A proposed revision of the clinical classification. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2011. In press. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleListURL&_method=list&_ArticleListID=1761598027&_sort=r&_st=13&view=c&_acct=C000010878&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=130561&md5=e8df8bcde3b532684246542bf6609d1a&searchtype=a. Accessed May 5, 2011.
- Baran R. The nail in the elderly. Clinics in Dermatology. 2011;29:54.