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What's Making My Toenail Thicken?

What's Making My Toenail Thicken?

So you’ve begun to notice your toenails are becoming thicker. In many cases, it is an early sign of the nail fungus called onychomycosis.

Our providers, including Payam Sarraf, DPMKate Kennedy, DPMKaty Statler, DPMAndrew Goodeill, DPMChristopher Van Damme, DPMAmelia Harris, DPM, and Sina Safar, DPM, want you to be treated for issues that could cause toenail thickening as early as possible. That’s why we recommend visiting one of our five Foot + Ankle Specialty Centers locations in the Phoenix, Arizona, area when you notice this symptom.

Thickening toenails is a sign of other issues

If you notice thicker toenails before other symptoms, you are already on your way to catching the issue early. That is good because early intervention makes treating a problem easier. But why exactly are your toenails thickening?

Why your toenails might be thickening

Your toenails can thicken for many reasons. Below we’ve listed some of the most common. Pay attention to other symptoms to determine what is most likely affecting you. 

Nail fungus (onychomycosis) 

Nail fungus is extremely common, as experts believe about 1 in 10 people are affected. There are several treatments for the condition, and treatment success is improved the quicker you are diagnosed.

Other symptoms of nail fungus include: 

Nail psoriasis 

Psoriasis in the toenails usually occurs when a person already has the condition. You might notice your nails becoming thick, brittle, and even falling off. Nail psoriasis can be treated, but again, we recommend seeking treatment sooner rather than later for the best results.

Injury to the nail

If you have recently injured your toenail, you might notice a thickening in that area. That occurs most often in runners when their toe presses against their shoe. To ensure that the toenail heals properly, seeking medical advice is usually the best next step. 

Getting older 

Often, when no other concerning symptoms are present, aging is the culprit of thickening toenails. It is normal, but it might make it harder to clip your toenails, especially if you are noticing decreased hand strength or problems bending down. If this is your situation, you might want to ask someone else to help you care for your nail health.

What to do about your thickening toenails

In some cases, there could be no concern while, while in others, early treatment interventions are essential. That’s why we recommend having your toenails checked by our team. We can tell you which of the above issues you might be dealing with and how best to proceed with treatment.

Let us help! 

We are always here to offer our help when it comes to diagnosis, treatment, and recovery of foot and ankle injuries and conditions. Contact one of our five locations to set up an appointment today! 

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