Just How Contagious is it?

Not Very

Let's say that you or someone in your family has toe nail fungus. You probably know that it's contagious, but you're wondering: just how contagious is it, really? The answer is, not very. But, it's important to consider that there are factors that can make someone more vulnerable to contagion. At any rate, the fungus doesn't exist in a vacuum, you caught it from someone else, and someone can catch it from you, too.

If you do have toe nail fungus, you should take precautions against spreading it to family members or those who share public spaces with you, such as at the local pool.

Higher Standards

Your prime responsibility as someone who has toe nail fungus is to adhere to a higher standard of personal hygiene. That means you shouldn't be using the community swimming pool until you've got that fungus beat. If you have membership in a gym, you need to make sure that you wear footwear at all times. Walking in a public space in your bare feet is a recipe for giving others toe nail fungus. That means that you shouldn't use the shower at your gym since others share this space sans footwear. Among other no-no's are visits to nail salons. It's best to refrain from manicures and pedicures unless your pedicurist is well-versed in dealing with toe nail fungus.

Here are some tips that can prevent the spread of toe nail fungus:

*Don't walk bare foot in public spaces. Wear cotton socks when walking without shoes at home, so others don't catch your condition.

*Don't share shoes and flip flops with anyone.

*Wear clean socks every day. Cotton is best since it breathes and wicks away sweat.

*Dry your feet well after you shower or bathe.

*File down your nails as much as you can.

*Don't wear polish.

*Allow your feet air time, since air keeps fungi from growing.

*Here's a list of those people most at risk for catching toe nail fungus:

*Those who get pedicures on a regular basis at salons that don't sterilize their equipment.

*Those who sustain trauma or damage to their nails

*People with very sweaty feet

*Those who use gyms, public pools, or share public shower stalls


*People whose jobs require them to stand on their feet at length: stewardesses, flight attendants, bartenders

*People over 65