Toenail fungus is quite frustrating as well as an aesthetically unpleasant problem, which affects 14 percent of the population in the United States. It is more commonly found in the elderly. Discoloration and cracking of the toenails are common outcomes of toenail fungus. The fungus can spread to other toes and cause the nails to stiffen if it is not treated. The most obvious sign is a change in the color of one or more toenails, which can be white, brown, or yellow. Nails may become thick and brittle as the infection spreads.
Toenail fungus can be cured with the help of several home remedies. Prescription oral antifungals, such as terbinafine (Lamisil) or fluconazole (Diflucan), are commonly used to treat toenail fungus, despite the fact that over-the-counter prescription drugs are more effective at dealing with it. Although these treatments usually work, they can have substantial negative effects such as nausea, vomiting, lightheadedness, skin irritation, and even jaundice.
The good news is that you can say goodbye to toenail fungus with the help of a good number of home remedies, lifestyle changes, as well as therapies. In this article, we will talk about how you can cure toenail fungus.
Toenail fungus is extremely prevalent. Toenails turn yellow or brown when fungus spreads in the space between the toe and the toe bed (the tissue directly under the toenail). This condition is called onychomycosis. A break or cut in the toe is usually the entry point. It can easily spread to other toenails and is extremely contagious.
Candida species are among the dermatophytes that commonly cause nail fungal infections. Common reasons for a fungal infection of the toenail include:
Trim and file your nails once a week to get them ready for treatment. Nail fungus treatments are more effective when applied to a clean, trimmed nail so that they can easily penetrate the nail and work properly. To maintain short, thin nails, use a standard pair of toenail clippers and an Emory board. Toenail fungus can be treated and prevented if nails are regularly cut, cleaned, and dried.Also read: Best Oculus Quest 2 Accessories To Bring Home In 2023
Changing your socks and shoes on a regular basis can also help reduce the spread of foot fungus. Socks and athletic shoes can both be washed to remove any fungus or yeast that may have settled into the fabric. Shoes and socks can be disinfected by washing them with a half cup of baking soda or a cup of vinegar to help get rid of bacteria and fungus. Some footwear can even be dried in a dryer. You may also clean shoes by letting them dry in the sun, but you should wait until they are entirely dry to wear them again.
Boots and other footwear that can’t go in the washing machine can be washed out with vinegar and water solution or sprayed with an OTC antifungal spray to kill any lingering fungi. Taking off shoes and socks and letting the feet breathe every once in a while will also help stop the growth of fungus. Wear shoes with good ventilation and clean, dry socks to keep your feet safe.
Toenail and foot fungus can be treated effectively by soaking the affected areas in plain tea. Black tea’s tannic acid helps reduce foot sweat by drying out the feet, killing bacteria, and closing the pores of the feet. Place five or six tea bags in two quarts of boiling water. Soak your feet in the cooled solution for 30 minutes. If you like, you can use this foot soak every day.
Apple cider vinegar foot soaks are another home cure for toenail fungus. Vinegar, which has antifungal properties, can be added to water to make a foot soak. It whitens discolored toenails and prevents infection from spreading to other toes because of its acetic acid content. Soak your feet every day for 20 minutes in a solution of 1 part vinegar to 2 parts warm water. A few drops of essential oils can be added to the mix if the odor is too strong to bear. Equally effective is using white vinegar instead.
Soak your feet in baking soda water to see if you can get your toenails to grow again. Baking soda paste made with very little water can also be applied topically to the foot. After ten to twenty minutes, remove the paste with warm water and dry your foot. Baking soda can also be sprinkled directly on the foot. After doing so on your dry feet, wear clean socks. Baking soda’s primary constituent, sodium bicarbonate, can absorb excess moisture and has antifungal and antibacterial properties.Also read: Top 10 Websites and Apps Like Thumbtack | Hire Best Local Pros With These Thumbtack Alternatives
Many common health problems can be treated at home with essential oils. Natural antifungal and antibacterial functions are present in many essential oils. Toenail fungus can be cured by using certain essential oils, such as:
Essential oils should be diluted with carrier oil before being applied to the skin. Apply a few drops of an oil or oil blend to the damaged nail after diluting it with carrier oil. Adding two or three drops of essential oils to a footbath is another option.
Oleuropein, found in olive leaf extract, is an effective natural antifungal and antibacterial. To prevent further infection in the toenails, try applying a salve prepared from olive leaves. Another option for treating toenail fungus systemically is to orally take capsules containing the extract. Olive leaf extract should only be taken after discussing it with your doctor. Each formulation has a unique dosage schedule.
Garlic is a strong antibacterial herb. Garlic cloves can be applied topically to the damaged nails for 30 minutes once a day for a week. Raw garlic should be used with caution due to the risk of a chemical burn.
You can inquire at a pharmacy about purchasing herbal supplements that contain garlic. If taken orally, these supplements can help with high blood pressure, heart disease, and certain malignancies, and even lower the risk of getting a tick bite in addition to treating skin infections. If you have a stomach ulcer, digestive issues, or a bleeding ailment, you should not take garlic supplements. It may also reduce the effectiveness of contraceptives. Before using any kind of garlic supplement, especially orally, you should consult a doctor.
Your current diet might be causing fungus from an overgrowth of Candida. If you want to starve the yeast and get rid of the toenail fungus, try these dietary changes:
The healing process can be sped up by exercising regularly. Faster blood circulation helps the body release vitamins and clean out toxins. Maintaining good cleanliness is essential to preventing the spread of toenail fungus. To avoid getting athlete’s foot, try wearing socks that wick away sweat, applying antifungal foot powder, taking off your shoes and socks after a workout to allow your feet to air out, and always wearing flip-flops or sandals in public showers and pools. After you get out of the shower, make sure to thoroughly dry your feet and then wash them with antibacterial soap.
Light therapy is one of the most popular therapies, and among the different types of light therapies, red light therapy can be useful in dealing with toenail fungus. In studies, treatment of toenail fungus using red light has been successful. Photodynamic antimicrobial chemotherapy (PACT) combines photosensitizing medicines with narrow bands of visible light to kill off microorganisms.
Scientists have shown that when light is coupled with photosensitizing medicines, microbial cells are killed. What’s most remarkable is that the treatment just kills off the bad cells while leaving the good ones alone.
PACT destroys fungi because oxidation severely damages their cells When you take this therapy at home by using a light therapy device, you will need to put your feet in front of it and let the strong red light get absorbed by the tissue. There, it will react with photosensitive chemicals in the dye to produce free radicals that destroy the targeted fungal cells irreparably but are harmless to healthy human cells.
When you are treating mild to moderate toenail fungus, you should opt for home methods rather than pharmaceutical medications. Although there is less scientific evidence that home remedies work, they help deal with the issue successfully and conveniently without causing any side effects.
You might need to consider several factors when treating toenail fungus, including the nail’s permeability, the infection’s severity, and the patient’s general health. It may take longer for toenail fungus to be cured with home treatments than with prescription topical drugs or oral systemic antifungals.
After the infection has cleared up, be sure to maintain dry, clean, and trimmed toenails. Toenail fungus can be painful and lead to permanent nail damage in severe situations. Get medical help if treating the infection at home doesn’t work, causes unpleasant side effects, or takes too long to be cured.
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