FAQ – Is Toenail Fungus Hereditary?

Many people ask us is toenail fungus hereditary.  Although there is no definitive evidence that toenail fungus is a hereditary condition, there is current research extensively studying the link to onychomycosis (toenail fungus) to a gene in our DNA.

The current literature supports that toenail fungus occurs most commonly because of a decreased immune system response or from a weakened spot on the toenail.  If your immune system is weak, you are not able to fight off normal bacteria or fungus that is on our skin.  People with Diabetes, Autoimmune conditions, or the elderly are just a few examples of conditions that weaken the immune system making them more susceptible to a fungal infection.  Another reason you can develop a toenail fungus is from trauma.  Regardless of whether the trauma is due to the nail coming completely off or from repetitive microtrauma from hitting in your shoes, trauma will weaken a small area on the nail and allow a fungus to infect the skin under the toenail and cause a fungal infection.  Also be careful of letting salons use tools to dig out ingrown toenails!  If your nail starts to lift off the skin from repetitive use of instruments used for a pedicure, then
it could allow for a fungus to creep underneath the skin and affect your nail.
If you think you have a toenail fungal infection, don’t wait to seek treatment!  Call Advanced Podiatry at 813-875-0555 for a consultation with our doctors today.  Don’t hide toenail fungus, treat it!!!