Yes, nail infection is contagious. Unlike what many people think, with nail infection, you must have gotten it from somewhere. While it may appear like it came all by itself from nowhere, it did not. You must have been in contact with a person who had it.
Nail fungus infection may not be in the category of highly contagious infections, but it is. Just by being in contact with infected materials, you can be infected with nail fungus. It is therefore amongst the easiest spread infections. So what are the most common places where you can get it from?
Going to a nail salon, you are thrilled. You are going to get out of thee with some very beautiful looking nails. When as far as spreading nail fungus is concerned, this is the most common place where you can get the infection. If the person whose nails were treated before yours had fungal infection and the tools are not sterilized properly, you can get the infection too. The infection can be spread by something as simple as a bottle of nail polish. If the nail polish was used on a person with the nail fungal infection, both the customers and the patrons of the salon are exposed to the infection. Therefore, the next time you go to a salon, ask about the methods they use to sterilize their equipment. Better yet, bring your own tools and nail polish.
Given that nail fungal infection is more common in men than in women, the salon is not the most common area where one can get the infection. Most nail fungal infections begin as athlete’s foot. This is then spread to other people in areas like the gym bathroom where people walk barefoot. If you do not go bathing in bathrooms that are shared, think about those times after you get out of a swimming pool and you walk around barefoot. To keep yourself from being infected, make sure that you wear your flip flops when walking in damp areas.
If you have athlete’s foot, you should get it treated. When not treated, it continues to spread from your feet to your toenails. When you share shoes, socks or other things that come into contact with the feet with a person who has athlete’s foot, the chances that you will also get it or a nail infection are high.
While it is a highly contagious infection, there are few cases where one did not get infected. Continuous trauma to the nails could cause nail fungal infection. Trauma can be when someone steps on your toes or drops something that hits your nails, it could also be from continuously wearing shoes that are too small or movement that causes the foot to suddenly slide in the shoe.
Prevention is always better than cure. If you do not have a fungal infection, make sure you wear flip-flops to prevent being in contact with floors where many people are walking barefoot regularly. You should also work on preventing trauma to your feet.
Dr. Soumya Podduturi is an Aesthetic Dermatologist, Dermatologist, Dermatosurgeon, Trichologist, Pediatric Dermatologist, Cosmetologist with 8 Years Experience