Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?

Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?

Is Toenail Fungus Contagious? Toenail fungus is only contagious is the other person is at risk. But don’t blame your wife or husband! Fungus is almost everywhere, including our skin, our socks and old sneakers. It’s true that there are some virulent strains out there, but they are very rare. To get toenail fungus there must be some previous inflammation and irritation already occurring!

Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?
Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?


There are Four Reasons People Find Toenail Fungus Contagious:

1) The development of a precursory condition – Microtrauma or Immune Depression.

Before fungus can ever get underneath the toenail, it is necessary for something to irritate the toenail and cause little microscopic cracks and loosening. This is almost always a result of microtrauma and inflammation that must be corrected. This may also not be a problem in some, but usually the immune system is also impaired


Causes of Microtrauma:

  • Footwear abnormalities- Poorly fitted shoes, tight shoe box, compressed forefoot, high heels or angled dress shoes.
  • Biomechanical Abnormalities-  flat feet, tight calves, tight hips, one leg shorter than the other.
  • Structural abnormalities- Long 2nd digit, a morton’s foot type, hallux rigidus, flat feet foot pain,  wide foot types.
  • Systemic abnormalities- Obesity.

Causes of Immune Depression

  • Smoking- causes poor blood flow.
  • Diabetes.
  • Peripheral vascular disease.
  • Obesity.
  • Any other severe metabolic problems.



Toenail fungus contagious
Is Toenail Fungus Contagious?


2) The development of tinea pedis or contact with an environmental fungus.

Tinea pedis is any fungus present on the skin. This is usually very common and not a problem. Almost everyone gets some fungus in their shoe if they sweat at all. It is almost never a problem  but if there is space forming underneath the nail- then this gets dangerous because the fungus can migrate underneath the nail and start causing some problems. It is almost impossible to try and avoid the fungus. You should focus on making yourself resistant rather than avoiding it!


3) The spread of pathogens along skin’s stratum corneum into the nail bed.

This just means that the skin fungus migrates along the deeper layers of the skin and gets in underneath the nail plate. This is difficult to avoid because most shoes already have fungus in them. And you will eventually be on a beach, a pool or a shower barefoot and you may contact fungus.



4)The fungus begins to grow under the nail.

Because the conditions were ripe for fungus settlement under the nail, they colonize here. They begin a vicious cycle of expanding and irritating under your toenail even further causing more damage. Just remember that they are not the cause! They came because something was already wrong in the first place. This is no different than leaving a pile of garbage in your backyard where rats hang out, and focusing only on getting rid of the rats and not the garbage pile. New ones would just show up later!



Eliminate your Contagious Toenail Fungus!

1)Correct the Microtrauma

Treating the nail fungus is only one step in the treatment of nail fungus, the nail must be prevented from being susceptible from becoming infected. If this is not done then after you spend all that time curing your fungus, it may just come right back again. This can be done by correcting one of many factors:

  • Hallux Limitus.
  • Bunion.
  • Flat Feet.
  • Obesity.
  • Tight calf muscles
  • Correct any system problems like smoking, peripheral vascular disease or diabetes.
  • Get a biomechanical exam by your podiatrist

2)Eliminate the Fungus

Return to our treatment guide for this step.



For more on How is Toenail Fungus Spread:

The Complete Toenail Fungus Guide


Other Related Nail Problems:

See if any of these other problems apply to your situation!

  1. Toenail Fungus

  2. Very Long Toenails

  3. Ingrown Toenail

  4. Toenail Falling Off

  5. Black Streaks Under The Nails

  6. White Patches On Toenails

  7. Black Spot Under The Toenail

  8. Red Spot Under The Toenail

  9. Toenail Coming Off The Nail Bed

  10. Toenail Psoriasis 

About the author

The Modern Podiatrist (Foot and Ankle Specialist Doctor):Today's podiatrist is required to undergo rigorous medical training that licenses them as physicians with equivalent legal standing to the MD and DO degree (These are physician recognized licenses most common only in the USA). Although admittedly the training does differ between the three degrees. The differences are listed below.In Michigan Podiatrists are trained and authorized to perform surgery in the foot and ankle up to the tibial tubercle below the knee.All our podiatrists and foot doctors have undergone rigorous training including a 4 undergraduate college degree, writing the medical school entrance exam (MCAT), followed by a 4 year medical school degree (DPM - Doctor of Podiatric Medicine),Once podiatrists in the USA complete the rigorous 4 year medical school courses, they are required to complete a minimum of 3 years of a surgical and non-surgical residency program. Some podiatrists and foot doctors then choose to go on to further fellowship training specializing in various forms of specialty such as diabetic surgery or reconstructive foot and ankle surgery.The training is not over yet! Each podiatrist must be judged by a governing body where they submit their surgical cases and are reviewed regularly to ensure excellent results. This is a career long evaluation with board qualifications and certifications every few years.So have faith that today's podiatrist is your best choice for your foot and ankle problems! We are able to approach you foot and ankle problems from a non-surgery perspective, but that when necessary we can provide you with the treatment that you need!All articles written by this account are considered to be for educational purposes only. It is impossible for us to truly assess your condition and the advice we give here is meant to give you a basis to then follow up with your podiatrist and foot doctor later.If you have any questions at all, or there is anything that we can help you with, please feel free to contact our office or email us. Podiatrists provide medically necessary treatment which should be covered by valid insurance plans, we are not a cosmetic or elective medical specialty.