Best Ways To Treat A Nail Fungus
Nail fungus can cause thick, discolored nails, and, for some patients, it can even be painful. An Internet search will bring up plenty of ways to treat the condition, but which ones are best? Dermatologist Dr. Christopher Hull discusses what nail fungus actually is, why its so hard to get rid of, and which treatments work best.
Toenail Fungus: Causes And Risk Factors
Toenail fungus is a fungal infection in the toenail. It happens when a fungus anything from mold to yeast to other types of fungus gets in the nail bed from a cut or break in the nail or repetitive trauma to the nail, and penetrates the nail itself, says Dr. Sundling. The nail then continues to grow with the fungus. Once a nail plate is infected with fungus, it will never not be infected, and you must wait to see how it grows out and whether the new nail growing behind it is healthy. The new nail rarely grows in healthy without treatment, says Sundling.
Toenail fungus is very common 14 percent of people have it in North America, according to an article published in the journal PLoS Pathogens and its more common the older you get, adds Sundling. Wearing shoes that are too small can damage the nail and make it more vulnerable to fungus, as can having a fungal infection on the skin of the foot and not treating it, which could expose the nail to fungus. You may be more at risk to toenail fungus if you have diabetes, or a weaker immune system.
Complications Regarding Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungal infections are typically painless or at least start off that way. But without proper self-care and treatment, the condition can spiral into a more severe case of nail fungus, which can be painful and may cause irretrievable damage to your nails.
Moreover, the toenail infection can sprout other serious infections that can spread beyond your feet, particularly if you have a suppressed immune system due to certain medications, diabetes, or other conditions.
Because people with diabetes are already predisposed to reduced blood circulation and nerve supply in their feet, their odds for catching toenail infections as well as bacterial skin infection are quite high.
Thus, it is imperative for people with diabetes to seek professional medical help for any seemingly minor foot injury including a nail fungal infection to avoid any future complications.
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Black Under Toenail Symptoms:
The most common symptom of black toenail fungus is that initially, toenail fungus develops.
- After toenail fungus develops, a thicker toenail usually takes up more room in the sock and shoe.
- As this happens, the toenail can catch on her shoes or socks and start to rip away from the skin.
- This gradually forms debris and dirt that forms under the tip of the nail. This then forms a callus in the nail that starts to rub the way more and more.
- Eventually, the toenail starts to turn black when small little blood vessels called capillaries are ripped away from the toenail.
- This creates bleeding between the toenail and the skin.
- As this blood starts to dry, it quickly turns black and forms a scab between the toenail and the skin.
- As this gets thicker, it forms thick black toenail fungus.
- The toenail eventually can turn completely back as it dies.
Does Hydrogen Peroxide Kill Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus is a really nasty condition.
Perhaps the only positive thing about it is that it’s easy to diagnose. Even you can notice the discoloration of the toenails, which may turn white, yellow, or brown. The condition is mostly visual, but if left untreated, there is a good chance that it will affect other toenails as well.
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How Do I Get Rid Of Black Toenail Fungus
- The best way to get rid of black toenail fungus is to trim the toenail.
- It is also a good idea to clean out the underlying callus underneath the toenail.
- The key to curing black toenail fungus is to make sure the new toenail can grow back in safely without more fungus underneath it.
- A podiatrist can help you do this, and this can greatly help remove the toenail fungus.
Do Vinegar Soaks Help Toe Fungus
In short, there is a lot of anecdotal evidence to suggest vinegar foot soaks can help you to get rid of fungal toenail infections over time and with repeated use.
There are further benefits to a vinegar soak. It could remove dry, cracked or dead skin cells from your feet. Its also thought that giving your feet a vinegar bath could help tackle other fungal infections, like athlete’s foot.
But will vinegar kill toenail fungus? Theres no concrete clinical evidence to suggest that soaking feet in vinegar will definitely work, though some users do report that the treatment can work on mild cases of fungal infections. It is also a low-risk treatment, so it is unlikely to cause you any harm if you do decide to test out this home remedy.
Usually, your doctor will recommend using medication to treat toe fungus rather than relying on a home remedy.
There are two main types of medical treatment that are normally recommended for fungal nail infections: nail paints and tablets.
Amorolfine nail paint is available from our online pharmacy for the topical treatment of fungal toenail infections. The antifungal nail paint works by stopping the growth of fungus that causes infections. It also breaks down the fungi cells and removes the fungus as the nail grows out. Amorolfine is the cheaper generic version of the branded Curanail antifungal treatment. You could also use Loceryl 5% nail lacquer, which is a prescription treatment you apply directly to your infected nail.
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Black Toenail Fungus Or Black Toenail Melanoma
A subungual melanoma can develop underneath the toenail. This is a dangerous toenail cancer and toe cancer.
Toenail cancer is sporadic and accounts for only about 1-2% of all diagnosed melanomas in the human body.
Of the subungual melanomas, 60% are found in the fingernails, and about 40% are found in the toenails. It is sporadic ever even to consider the black toenail fungus or toenail melanoma question.
Subungual melanomas are more common in older individuals 60+ years or older and have a history of cancerous skin growth.
A subungual melanoma or a toenail melanoma black toenail line is usually very wide .The black line extending into the epidermis is called a Hutchinson sign. It is usually associated with a thickened toenail nodule. It might also possibly show bleeding that extends into the surrounding toenail skin.is
Usually, only one toenail is infected. It is scarce for there to be multiple subungual melanomas.
Important melanoma warning: It is essential to see your podiatrist or your oncologist perform a biopsy.
If a subungual melanoma is not detected, it can spread through the rest of your body. Going to see your podiatrist is a great start to diagnose whether you had a black toenail fungus or a black line associated with subungual melanoma.
Apply Or Consume Garlic
A 2019 study indicates that garlic is an antifungal powerhouse, potentially making it a gem for treating toenail fungal infections. It is best to place crushed or chopped garlic on the affected area daily, Hayag says. It is important to take caution when following this remedy, as garlic has the potential to cause chemical burns to the skin. To avoid any burns, theres also the option of taking garlic supplements to see if that might help clear things up.
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Pathophysiology Of Toenail Fungus
The pathophysiology of a disease refers to the study of changes caused by it to the suffering organ or organism. In the case of toenail and fingernail fungal infections, the pathophysiology of the nail is altered such that it is not able to provide its normal function. The nail becomes distorted, weak and the whole morphology may appear different. The function of the nail is to protect by providing a hard covering to the nail bed. In this case, the affected nail part or even the whole nail fails to do so. This results in weakening of the nail and often times the nail even gets separated from the nail bed.
Hairdryer And Talcum Powder
Fungi cannot grow and thrive if they do not have the ideal environment. Some people sweat a lot and spend the entire day wearing wet socks or keep shoes on their feet, which don’t allow the skin to breathe. This aggravates the infections or increases the risk of developing one. Getting rid of this moisture, particularly between your toes, helps keep the fungus from worsening and spreading.
Use a hairdryer to dry feet thoroughly after a shower or bath. Try not to burn the skin, but make sure no moisture remains on the surface. Once your feet are dry, you can proceed to sprinkle a bit of talcum powder that will help absorb the sweat.
When it comes to keeping feet dry during the day, you should also wear proper socks. Wool, bamboo, and socks made of moisture-wicking materials are a good choice.
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Home Remedies For Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus, also known as onychomycosis or tinea unguium, is a common nail condition affecting millions of people in the United States. Fungal nail infections can develop on the nail from various organisms such as molds, yeasts, and fungi. This usually occurs after these organisms come into contact with a cracked nail or skin surrounding the nail as the opening provides a portal of entry for these organisms.
Apple Cider Vinegar Drops On Toenail Fungus
Aside from foot soak, you can use apple cider vinegar for toenail fungus treatment by applying drops of the apple cider vinegar directly to your toenail bed. Once applied, you should allow the ACV to sit on your toenail bed for about 10-15 minutes undisturbed.
This method works perfectly for those who do not have 30 minutes two times daily to soak their feet in Apple cider vinegar. For quicker results, those who want can combine this method with the foot soak method.
Whichever of these two methods you intend to use to treat your toenail fungus, should be used for several months or until the fungus toenail is restored back to it normal state.
Does Apple Cider Vinegar for Toenail Fungus Home Remedy Have Any Side Effects
Home remedies generally have no side effects and thats not different with Apple cider vinegar for toenail fungus treatment. ACV is used as preservative we eat them in our foods at home and cause us no harm. They are only harmful to fungi. However, in everything moderation is important. You should not overuse ACV foot soak simply because you want to get rid of your toenail fungus infection overnight.
How Long Does It Take For Apple Cider Vinegar To Cure or Kill Toenail Fungus
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How Good Is Hydrogen Peroxide For Toenail Fungus
Given that hydrogen peroxide is regarded as a home remedy, there are a lot of people who are questioning its efficiency. This isn’t really surprising as there is nothing better than the traditional oral drugs. However, as mentioned before, these medicines will not always work.
Perhaps the best thing about hydrogen peroxide is that most of us have it in our homes. You wont have to travel a long distance in order to buy it, but instead, you can start the therapy as soon as you notice the issue. Still, we do recommend that you visit a doctor beforehand.
This product is really strong and is commonly used for disinfection. It has amazing antifungal properties, which will help get rid of the root issue. When you kill off the fungus, your toenails will be able to regrow themselves. Besides its disinfection use, there are lots of other benefits to using hydrogen peroxide. For example, it is a strong antiseptic, oxidizer, disinfectant, as well as bleach.
Although there are no studies to corroborate these claims, there are a lot of users who are claiming that hydrogen peroxide helped them deal with the issue. No matter what, it is important for a patient to continue the treatment as long as there are signs of the fungus. This might take weeks and even months, but this is simply the nature of toenail fungus.
Apply The Oregano Oil
Oregano oil is in use for centuries for getting rid of toenail fungus. It has all the properties for healing toenail fungus like anti-fungal, antiseptic, antiviral, analgesic, antiseptic and antibacterial. Mix two teaspoons of both olive and oregano oil. Apply it to your toenail directly and leave it for 20 minutes. Rinse it off and apply it regularly for fast healing.
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What Is The Big Deal With Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus can easily be diagnosed. In fact, you don’t have to be an expert to notice discoloration on your toenails. The fungus often goes deep under your nails, which makes it nasty.
People hate this issue because of the visual effect. However, the fact it is hard to remove makes it so much more troublesome. It also quickly spreads, which means that it needs constant attention.
Unfortunately, antifungal drugs are powerful and can cause various side effects.
Perhaps the biggest issue is how these drugs impact the liver. They are very dangerous for people who have any liver issues, which is why you have to test your blood before taking drugs for toenail fungus. Even if everything looks fine, there is still a chance complications will occur.
As an alternative, doctors will often recommend topical creams. These products are much better as they don’t cause severe side effects. However, they are not as strong as regular oral drugs, which prolongs the whole treatment. Patients usually have to apply topical cream for several months until they notice any progress.
Home remedies are also a popular alternative.
Besides various oils and vinegar, many people use baking soda for toenail fungus.
There Is A Wide Range Of Options With Varying Success Rates
Other than keeping your toenails trimmed and perhaps painted, you may not pay much attention to them unless a problem develops. Healthy toenails are pink, shiny and smooth, but a fungal infection can cause them to become discolored, thick, brittle and even painful.
Toenail fungal infection, known as onychomycosis, is a common but challenging condition toenail fungus treatments include a wide range of options with varying success rates.
Causes of toenail fungus
Fungal nail infections are usually caused by fungi called dermatophytes that infect the skin beneath the nail yeast is another common culprit. Toenails are especially vulnerable to infection when your bare feet contact damp surfaces such as showers, swimming pools and locker rooms. If you have athletes foot, the infection can spread to the nails.
Wearing closed shoes such as athletic shoes for extended periods also can contribute to infection if your shoes and/or socks are damp from perspiration or heat. Moreover, if your shoes fit snugly enough to put pressure on your toes, they can damage the nail bed, making it more susceptible to infection.
People with chronic diseases, such as diabetes or circulatory problems, also may be more prone to toenail infections.
Symptoms of toenail fungus
Toenail fungus symptoms can develop slowly over time and may go unnoticed at first. Symptoms can include:
Toenail fungus treatments
When to see a doctor for toenail fungus
Preventing toenail fungus
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Staying One Step Ahead Of Toenail Fungus
An established fungal infection is hard to eradicate, but you can stop its spread and improve your toenail’s appearance.
Toenail fungus isn’t a pressing health problem. Yet a fungal infection can ruin the appearance of your nails and cause pain as it lifts the nail away from the nail bed. And fungal infections are notoriously difficult to get rid of. “You may want to consider fungal toenail a condition to be managed rather than cured,” says Dr. James P. Ioli, chief of the podiatry service at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
How Do You Make A Vinegar Foot Soak
If you would like to try out a vinegar foot bath at home, you can follow the instructions below.
Step 1: Get a bottle of vinegar. The type of vinegar you use doesnt necessarily matter most people either take a white vinegar foot soak or an apple cider vinegar foot soak. The important thing is the pH of the vinegar, which should typically be 2-3. So, its not a question of what is better for toenail fungus , its a question of whether youve selected vinegar with a pH of 2-3.
Step 2: Fill a sink or bowl with 1 part vinegar and 2 parts warm water .
Top tip: if youre finding the smell of vinegar too strong or unpleasant, you can add a few drops of essential oils to the mixture, such as lavender oil.
Step 3: Soak foot for 15-30 minutes daily in the mixture. Do not soak for longer than 30 minutes.
Step 4: Make sure that you dry your foot/feet thoroughly after your soak. The fungus grows best in a moist environment, so leaving feet damp encourages fungal growth especially if you are putting on socks or shoes next.
Step 5: Repeat this process daily until you can see that your infection has disappeared.
If you have particularly sensitive skin, you may find that vinegar causes some skin irritation. If this is the case, you can try decreasing the time you spend soaking your feet to 10-15 minutes or diluting the mixture with more water. You could also try reducing the amount of foot soaks you try to a few times a week instead.
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