Various types of fungal infections can be caused by different types of fungi. All of them, however, commonly cause an annoying itch on the skin.
These fungi normally invade and breed on dead skin cells. They feed on keratin, a protein found on the skin, hair, and nails. Various types of fungal infection are identified based on the kind of fungus.
1. Athlete’s foot (Tinea pedis)
Clinical evidence indicates that about 15% to 25% of the world population is likely to have athlete’s foot at any one time. This skin condition is caused by a fungus that multiplies in warm, damp areas of skin, like those between your toes. This condition makes the skin to feel itchy, flaky, and have a reddish color. When the infection sets in, the soles of the feet can also become dry and scaly. Blisters may also be present as well.
Athlete’s foot can easily be picked up if you are fond of walking barefoot on damp or contaminated floors like on communal shower areas, swimming pools, and saunas. It is also possible that the infection may spread to other parts of your body if you won’t wash or forgot to wash your hands after you touch your feet.
2. Nail infections (Tinea unguium)
This kind of fungal infection usually begins at the edge of the nail and spreads slowly down to its base. It takes a while before that happens, however. When fungi begin to set in, they can cause your nail to discolor, become brittle, and crumbly. Surrounding tissues on the nails may also get thicker. If they are not treated, your nails may become so thick that will just be painful to wear shoes. Reports indicate that toenails are usually affected more than fingernails. (more…)