Irvine, California, situated between Santa Ana and Mission Viejo, just a few minutes from the Southern California Coast, was once home to large olive groves and acres of citrus trees. Once owned by James Irvine and then by his son, James Irvine II, Irvine morphed over time from a wild, sparsely populated sheep grazing ranch in the mid-1800s, to the home of more than 212,000 people.
Today, Irvine serves as the home base for dozens of tech corporations and boasts a number of colleges and universities within the city limits. Once a wild and untamed land used mostly for grazing and field crops, Irvine was developed as a planned community with no detail overlooked. Designed by William Pereira and Raymond Watson, Irvine is divided into villages, each separated by six-lane streets. Each village is distinct in its architecture and is centered around commercial enterprises, schools, and churches throughout the village.
HOAs & Mello-Roos Tax in Irvine
Most Irvine homeowners belong to and pay dues to a homeowners association, which governs the appearance and maintenance of the neighborhoods. In addition to HOA dues, neighborhoods built after 1980 may also be subject to a special tax call a Mello-Roos tax. The Mello-Roos tax is used to fund new community projects and build community facilities.
The Mello-Roos is a type of parcel tax that avoids association with property tax by not attaching value to the property itself but is levied evenly across all property owners. This tax was conceived as an end-run around California Proposition 13, which passed in 1978 and limited local governments from increasing the amount of property tax by more than the annual rate of inflation, each year. This placed a restriction on increases in public services and the development of public facilities.
Cost of Living in Irvine
Mello-Roos communities, as the neighborhoods who fund public development using this special tax, are called, use the money to maintain beautiful landscaping along the public roads, build parks and community centers, and member-only tennis courts and swimming pools that can only be accessed by residents of those specific neighborhoods. Most, but not all, villages in Irvine are Mello-Roos communities, meaning that homeowners are required to pay HOA dues, property taxes, and Mello-Roos assessments, in addition to the already high cost of housing.
These combined factors make Irvine one of the most expensive places to live in the nation. According to Sperling, Irvine is more than double the average cost of living in the United States and 50% more expensive than the average cost of living in California. The biggest reason for this disparity is the cost of homes. Irvine homes cost, on average, more than four times the national average.
Irvine, California Economy
With such high cost of living expenses, it’s a good thing Irvine has a thriving economy. Named as one of the best places to start a company, Irvine boasts placement in the top ten fastest-growing job markets and an unemployment rate below the national average. Income-per-person, in Irvine, is 65% higher than the national average.
A number of large corporations make their headquarters in Irvine, including In-N-Out Burger, Kia Motors, Mazda Motor Corporation, Asics, Broadcom Corporation, Ford Motor Company, Vizeo, and Western Mutual Insurance Group. While tech and manufacturing jobs are a major economic factor in Irvine, the education sector makes up the largest portion of employment opportunities in Irvine. The city is home to the University of California, Irvine (UCI), Concordia University, Irvine Valley College, and campuses for the University of Southern California and California State University Fullerton.
Villages of Irvine
Irvine is made up of a large collection of villages. Each village is unique in its architecture and designed to allow the residents to function entirely within “their” village if they choose to. Irvine villages include:
Going to the Beach from Irvine
Irvine enjoys much the same climate as the rest of coastal Southern California. Warm, dry summers and cooler winters with no frost. Summer temperatures can rise into the 90s, leaving some residents of Irvine looking for the cooler air along the coast.
For people suffering from toenail fungus, however, the idea of going to the beach to escape the heat of the summer is more of a nightmare than a dream-come-true. Thick, discolored toenails are unsightly and difficult to maintain, leaving some suffers too self conscious to take their shoes off and poke their toes in the sand.
What Causes Thickening Toenails?
Toenail fungus is caused by microbes that exist everywhere in the environment and thrive in moist, dark places. Fungi, mold, and yeast can all infect the nails and these microorganisms are nearly always present in environments with sufficient moisture and lack of sunlight. Moist, dark areas are prime places for fungi microbes to thrive, but they exist in nearly every environment, and we are always coming into contact with them.
Up to 10% of the population is estimated to suffer from toenail fungus infections. This condition is so common because the microbes that cause the infection are all around us all the time. When we wear tight fighting shoes that trap sweat and moisture next to our skin, we help to create an environment where fungus can take hold on our feet and toenails.
Healthy nails are more resistant to infection from fungus causing microbes. People most at risk for developing toenail fungus are athletes, elderly people, and people with other health conditions that lower their immune system. Some of the most common places to come into contact with toenail fungus are public pools, gyms, and showers, but the microbes are present everywhere in our environment.
If you notice that your toenails are getting increasingly thick and difficult to cut, you may have a toenail fungus infection. The microbes that cause toenail fungus flourish in dark, moist places. You can come into contact with the microbes that cause toenail fungus in places like public pools or showers. Wearing tight shoes while doing sweaty work or exercising can also give fungus an opportunity to take root in your toenails.
In the beginning, toenail fungus is difficult to spot, but you may notice that your toenails start to thicken and get more and more difficult to cut. This is a sign that you have a fungus infection in your toenails and should seek treatment.
Dr. Kleis is the leading provider for laser nail fungus treatments in Southern California. He has successfully treated hundreds of patients for toenail fungus infections, restoring their natural beautiful nails. Before your toenails get any thicker, you should schedule a consultation with Dr. Kleis to see if laser toenail treatment is right for you.
How To Cut Thick Toenails
If you have toenails that are thick and difficult to cut, it can be helpful to soak your feet for ten or fifteen minutes in warm water before trying to cut the nails. For extra pampering, try adding some Epsom salts to the warm water, creating a soothing foot bath and softening the nails so they will cut more easily.
Once the nails are softened from the foot soak, use very sharp nail trimmers and make short cuts along the top of the nail, being careful not to split the nail down into the nail bed. Be sure to clean the instruments between each toe so that you don’t spread the toenail fungus infection from one toe to the next.
Thick Toenail Treatment
Very thick toenails are a sign of toenail fungus infection. If you have thick, unsightly toenails that are difficult to cut or maintain, you may need to treat the cause with toenail fungus treatments using laser technology.
Laser toenail fungus treatment is one of the most effective treatments for thick toenails and is free from any side effects. The treatments are painless and don’t require any anesthesia or pain relief afterward. The lasers treat only the infected tissues, targeting the fungus organisms in a way that won’t damage the healthy tissue around the nail.
Pulsing laser technology avoids overheating the tissue around the nail and ensures that the treatments aren’t uncomfortable. The fungus infection is destroyed, usually in a single session, and your nails will grow out beautiful and normal, no longer thick and ugly.
To inquire about laser treatment for thick toenails, call Dr. Kleis at (714) 760-4944
Toenail Fungus Symptoms
In the beginning, toenail fungus can be hard to spot. It can look like a white or yellow spot under the tip of the toenail. The first symptoms of toenail fungus can be so slight, however, that most people don’t know they have it until their toenails start to thicken and become misshapen.
Symptoms of toenail fungus infections include:
- Thick Toenails
- Misshapen Toenails
- Discolored Toenails
- Flaky Toenails
- Toenails That Fall Off
Thick, brown toenails are an indication that you likely have a toenail fungus infection. Fungal infections can also give you discolored toenails that are white, green, yellow, or black. Toenails that flake off and crumble are also a sign of toenail fungus.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kleis today to discuss a course of treatment that will have you rushing to put on sandals once again!
Toenail Fungus Pain
The fungi, mold, and yeast that cause toenail fungus infections do not cause pain in and of themselves. However, if left untreated, the nail will often become thick and distorted, making the wearing of shoes extremely uncomfortable and causing pain when standing or walking.
Aside from being uncomfortable, the fungus infected nail will sometimes lift off the nail bed, creating a gap where bacteria can grow. Bacteria cause infections that can be painful and often smell bad. If you have distorted toenails that are causing you pain or have an odor that you can’t seem to get rid of through proper hygiene, you should schedule a visit with Dr. Kleis to have your condition evaluated. Whether you are suffering pain from a toenail fungus infection or a bacterial infection, Dr. Kleis can recommend the appropriate course of action.
Toenail Fungus FAQs
What is toenail fungus?
Toenail fungus is a growth of yeast, mold, or fungi that live in the nail or nail bed. Oftentimes, damage to a healthy nail or a lowered immune system provides an opportunity for the microbes that are nearly always present in our environment a place to take hold around the toenail and begin to grow.
Toenail fungus can look like a thick, discolored nail. It can be brown, white, black, or yellow. In the beginning, fungus often looks like a white or yellow spot under the tip of your toenail. As the infection persists, you may experience a thickening of the toenail, or it may lift from the nail bed or become flaky.
What Causes Toenail Fungus?
Fungal infections of the toenails are most often caused by exposure to moist, wet areas. Communal showers, such as those found at a gym or public pool are often sources of infection. Having athletes foot is also a risk factor for developing toenail fungus, as athletes foot is a fungus that can, over time, infect the nail bed, as well.
Tight-fitting shoes, worn for long periods of time in hot, sweaty conditions, also provide an environment for toenail fungus to gain a foothold. Repeated trauma to the toenail can weaken the nails and provide an opportunity for toenail fungus to begin.
How do you get toenail fungus?
Anyone can get toenail fungus. The fungi, mold, and yeasts that cause toenail fungus are commonly found in most moist, wet areas. Going barefoot in public showers is a common way to come into contact with fungus causing pathogens. Not everyone who comes into contact with toenail fungi will actually get toenail fungus. Persons with weakened nails are especially prone to developing nail fungus.
Athletes are prone to toenail fungus, partly because of the tight-fitting shoes they wear and sweaty workouts they endure. Athletes are also prone to repeated nail trauma, which weakens the nail and provides an opportunity for nail fungus to begin.
Elderly people are more prone to developing toenail fungus, due to an overall weakened immune system caused by age. Other conditions that make a person more susceptible to toenail fungus include diabetes, AIDS, cancer, psoriasis, and taking immunosuppressive medications like steroids.
Can I get toenail fungus from a pedicure?
It is possible to contract toenail fungus from a nail salon. If the sanitary conditions of a salon are not sufficiently maintained, toenail fungi can lurk in the cracks and crevices of basins and equipment. These fungi can then be passed from one customer to another. Proper hygiene and a strict cleaning regimen will reduce the chances of toenail fungus being contracted by customers of a nail salon. It is important to avoid nail salons that lack good sanitation.
Can I get a pedicure while I have toenail fungus?
It is possible to get a pedicure, even if you have a toenail fungus. However, it is important to choose a salon that is equipped with proper sanitation equipment and be upfront about your condition so that the nail technician will be prepared to sanitize properly afterward. Calling ahead will ensure that the salon you choose is equipped to handle your situation. In some cases, a customer will be asked to provide their own manicure tools and nail polish to avoid spreading the fungus.
What does toenail fungus look like?
In the beginning, toenail fungus is not very noticeable. It may start out as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your toenail. As time goes on, your toenail may become thicker or distorted, making it difficult to cut your toenails. Your toes may become painful, especially if the affected toe is under pressure.
Toenail fungus may turn your toenail black, yellow, green, or white, depending on the type of infection. The nail can become brittle or crumbly. Pieces of the nail may break off or the nail may fall off completely. The skin around the infected toenail may also get red, irritated, swollen, or cracked.
What does the beginning of toenail fungus look like?
Toenail fungus often begins as a small white or yellow spot under the tip of the nail. It is generally not painful or particularly noticeable in the early stages. As the infection grows, the nail may become discolored, thicken, or become distorted.
Is toenail fungus contagious?
Toenail fungus is contagious in the sense that it is possible to get it. However, most people are resistant to the fungus and will only develop it if there are some underlying problems like lower immunity, damaged nails, or prolonged exposure to moist, wet conditions surrounding the feet. Because toenail fungus is so common, you can expect that more than one person in a household may have it, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that one person passed it to another. The fungi, mold, and yeast that commonly cause toenail fungus are present in most moist, wet areas, including home bathrooms, bathtubs, and showers. A person “catches” toenail fungus by having weakened nails and then being exposed to the fungus, rather than simple exposure to another person with toenail fungus.
How to Treat Toenail Tungus
There are several treatments for toenail fungus. These treatments include oral medications, topical treatments, and surgery.
Oral medications work with your body to clear the infection more quickly than topical treatments but come with side effects like liver problems and skin rash.
Topical treatments can take longer to work, sometimes up to a year to clear a fungal infection. Surgery can be used to remove the infected nail and allow a new, healthy nail to grow. This treatment is usually only prescribed if the infection is very severe and/or painful.
Laser treatments are the easiest way to get rid of toenail fungus. Lasers target the fungi under the nail and kill it, with no side effects and no discomfort. Other than a slight warming sensation, the patients feel very little during treatment. Once the lasers have killed the fungus, the nail simply grows out, healthy and normal. In some cases, your podiatrist may recommend more than one laser treatment, to ensure that all fungi have been eliminated.
How to Treat Toenail Fungus at Home
There are several home remedies for toenail fungus. People use Vicks VapoRub, snakeroot extract, eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil, oregano oil, and hydrogen peroxide, among others. While some of these methods may work when the fungal infection is in the early stages, advanced toenail fungus needs to be treated in a doctors office for best results.
Will my toenails grow back after fungus treatment?
Yes! After treatment, you can expect your toenail to continue to grow out at its natural rate, replacing the unsightly nail with a beautiful, healthy one.
Does Peroxide Get Rid of Toenail Fungus?
Hydrogen peroxide can kill fungus microbes. Soaking your foot in peroxide can, in some cases, help get rid of toenail fungus. However, because it is difficult for hydrogen peroxide to reach all of the areas of the toe where the fungus can grow, such as under the nail, in the nail bed, it can be difficult to completely treat advanced fungus with peroxide alone. Using peroxide as a preventive or early intervention tool can be quite effective, however.
Will Toenail Fungus Go Away on Its Own?
In most cases, toenail fungus will not go away on its own. It requires treatment to eliminate it and prevent the spread to other, healthy toenails.
Can I Cut My Toenails if They Have Fungus?
Yes, you can cut your toenails, even if they have fungus. To avoid spreading the fungus to other toenails, be sure to thoroughly clean the cutting instruments between toes using bleach or peroxide. To make cutting your toenails easier, soak your feet for ten minutes or so in warm water to soften the nails. Then, use sharp nail clippers to cut straight across, using small cuts to avoid splintering the nail and damaging the nail bed.
Does Nail Polish Cause Toenail Fungus?
While nail polish doesn’t exactly CAUSE toenail fungus, it can increase your chances of getting it. Dark nail polish, especially if worn all the time, can block sunlight from reaching your nail bed. Sunlight can kill fungus microbes and prevent toenail fungus from growing. Keeping your nails constantly covered up with polish can increase your chances for toenail fungus to grow. Also, nail salons are a place where you might come into contact with fungi if the nail technicians aren’t vigilant about cleaning pedicure instruments between customers. Use care in choosing a nail salon and, if possible, visit in the morning when instruments are generally the cleanest.
My Toenail Fell Off – Is It Fungus?
There are several reasons why your toenail might fall off. Trauma is the most common reason for losing a toenail. However, if your toenail thickens over time, lifting from the nail bed and eventually falling off, it is very likely a fungus and you should seek treatment from your podiatrist.
Can my fingernails get fungus?
Yes, any nail can get a fungal infection. It is not as common for fungal infections to infect a fingernail because hands are generally kept drier and not exposed as frequently to hot, damp, confined conditions.
Why Don’t Fingernails Get Fungal Infections As Often As Toenails?
Our feet are often confined for hours per day in hot, sweaty shoes. The shoes block the sunlight and don’t allow sweat to dry, creating an ideal environment for fungus and mold like athletes foot and toenail fungus to thrive. Hands get wet, but then are quickly dried, not providing the moist, wet conditions fungus need to grow.
Best Toenail Fungus Treatment In Irvine, California
If you’re looking for the best laser treatment for toenail fungus in Southern California, you’ll find it at The Laser Nail Specialists. Dr. Kleis, DPM is a podiatrist in Costa Mesa, serving all of Orange County. Dr. Kleis has the very latest in laser technology and can treat your toenail fungus quickly and painlessly. There’s no need to suffer from toenail fungus any longer, call Dr. Kleis and schedule your consultation today.