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It happens to most men, and it happened to me.  No, not that.  The ugly yellow toenail disease.  Technically called “onychomycosis” (kinda sounds like ugly on my toeses, doesn’t it?).

Fungal infections in the toenails are caused by exposure to fungus (duh), yeast or mold organisms. (Also know as critters – thank you Ellie Mae!)   Exposure happens through direct contact with the organisms. (I suppose if you’re going to get something, you’d have to be exposed to it first.)  The organisms are common in public swimming pools and public shower areas where many people FOOLISHLY walk barefoot. To help prevent contracting a toenail fungus infection, socks, towels and bedding should not be shared with an infected person.  (Don’t let your wife read this, you’ll be on the couch until your toenails are rosy pink again.)

Now, as I said, it happened to me.  I joined a gym in 1987, did not have shower shoes, and FOOLISHLY walked barefoot into the shower.  This was in Florida , where it never gets cold, and fungi just live FOR EVER!

This is a sneaky little mite.  It gets under your toenails and transforms them into dinosaur like scales that frighten children and make adults do the “tsk, tsk” thing as you shuffle away.


The scary part, you don’t have to be old to get it.  1987 was 22 years ago, I was let’s see, where is that calculator?   I was 35.  Really, was I ever 35?

I suppose I was, but anyway, it came on with a vengeance.  Not being one to eschew the doctor’s office, I trotted over to my “$10.00 doctor”, as we called it in the early HMO days, and his PA promptly gave me a pill.

I pill so powerful that I could only take it for 90 days, and it would take a year to work.  “That’ll be $100.00 please.” And I was on my way.

It didn’t work.

I went back.  He gave me more.  And he gave me nail polish (ok, that’s a little too METRO for even me).

It didn’t work.

I went back.  We tried the pills again.  Now between the heart medicine, the acetaminophen, and the toenail stuff, I’m surprised I have a liver.  Every one of them says, prolonged use may “cause liver damage”.

But it didn’t work.

Twenty years from the first visit to the doctor regarding my hideously sulfur colored nails, I was getting the prescription filled one more time and the pharmacist said, “you know, if you get some of that “mentholatum ointment” over there, and put it on the bed of  your nails every time you put socks on, it’ll go away.”  He added, “it’ll take a year, but it’ll go away.”


So, for $3.99, I figured, what the heck.

Now, it didn’t take a year, it took two.

But it went away.   Now, I have no more sandal free summers!  I can show my toes in public!   I can put my feet up on the coffee table and not have people throw their food out.  Life is good, at least for my toes.  Their back in style again.

Try it, you’ll like it!


This post is part of Fight the Frump Friday at Blissfully Domestic!  Check it out!

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