Risk factorsBy Mayo Clinic staff
Aging is the most common risk factor for nail fungus for several reasons, including:
- Diminished blood circulation
- More years of exposure to fungi
- Nails may grow more slowly and thicken with age, making them more susceptible to infection
Nail fungus tends to affect men more often than it does women, particularly those with a family history of this infection.
Other factors that can increase your risk of developing nail fungus include:
- Perspiring heavily
- Working in a humid or moist environment
- Having the skin condition psoriasis
- Wearing socks and shoes that hinder ventilation and don't absorb perspiration
- Walking barefoot in damp public places, such as swimming pools, gyms and shower rooms
- Having athlete's foot (tinea pedis)
- Having a minor skin or nail injury, a damaged nail, or another infection
- Having diabetes, circulation problems or a weakened immune system
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