Risk Factors Associated With Toenail Fungus
Certain health conditions and lifestyle factors can make you increasingly vulnerable to developing nail fungus:
Health: You have a greater chance of contracting a fungal nail infection if you suffer from one or more of the following issues:
- Other fungal skin infections, such as athletes foot or ringworm
- Increasingly brittle, crumbly, or ragged nail
- Nail that appears warped or distorted in shape
- Nail that appears dull without any luster
- Dark color, caused by the accumulation of debris under your nail
- Slightly foul odor in the affected area
How To Apply Apple Cider Vinegar For Toenail Fungus Infection
For good result when using apple cider vinegar for toenail fungus treatment, you want to make sure you buy raw, unpasteurized, and organic vinegar. To use Apple cider vinegar for toenail fungi infection, all you need to do is to soak your feet in a bowl of warm water and vinegar for a between 20-30 minutes. Do this twice a day till the fungus clears from your toenail.
- Step 1 Fill a bucket or basin or a foot tub with water enough to completely cover your feet. You could add the water using cups for measurement purpose.
- Step 2 If for instance 4 cups of water was used in step one, use two cups of ACV here. You want to make sure the apple cider vinegar added is at least half of the water to be used.
- Step 3 Immerse your feet in the bowl of water and leave them there for at least 20-30 minutes. Note that it is important that your feet are completely immersed in the water, if the water is not enough, you must add more water and ensure half the quantity of water added as extra is also added in form of Apple cider.
Once done you can then wipe your feet properly and repeat the process for at least two times per day in order to see better results.
What Is The Most Effective Treatment For Toenail Fungus
The most effective toenail fungus treatment for you will largely depend on your symptoms and situation. Your provider will consider several factors before recommending a treatment plan thats customized to you.
Overall, oral antifungal medications may offer the most treatment potential. Pairing oral drugs with topical antifungal medication may make treatment more effective.
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How To Use Black Light To Diagnose Fungus
The most common way to diagnose fungal infections of the skin used to be a Woodâs lamp, more commonly called a black light today. Not all fungi fluoresce in ultraviolet light, but many species do. Over time, these easy-to-spot species have been replaced by species that do not fluoresce, the major exception being ringworm, of which about half the species fluoresce in UV light 2.
Clean the suspected infection site. Because a wide variety of substances fluoresce under UV light, carefully clean the area to be inspected. Be sure to remove flaking skin, hair, makeup or topical medications that can obscure the infection.
Activate the black light. Power your small, handheld black light by plugging it into an electrical outlet and switch it on. A portable lamp should be used so it can be brought close to the site of the potential fungal infection.
Hold the lamp close to skin. Bring the bulb of the lamp close to the infection site without actually touching it to the skin. If a ringworm or another fluorescent fungus is present, the site should glow bright green.
Confirm the diagnosis with a culture. A black light diagnosis should not be considered conclusive. Take a culture of the suspected fungus with a cotton swab and allow it to develop in a sealed culture media, or seek professional assistance.
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How Can It Be Treated
Treating a fungal nail can be a lengthy process it can take several months to clear. This is largely due to the time it takes for your toenail to grow.
Youll only see a clear improvement when the damaged nail has grown out. It can take six months to a year after the treatment has finished before the nail looks normal again.
Speak to your pharmacist for advice on treating fungal nail infections. See your GP if over the counter treatment hasnt worked or if the infection is severe or has spread to other nails. Make sure you see your GP or a foot specialist if you have diabetes and develop a fungal nail infection, as people with diabetes are at an increased risk of foot problems.
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Tips For Keeping Toenail Fungus From Returning
Toenail fungus is a tough foe to battle. The sooner its found out, the easier it tends to be to treat. Unfortunately, most cases are not discovered until the fungus has had a good opportunity to entrench itself in your toenail.
Treatment has likely taken months, but youve reached that light at the end of the tunnel. The fungus has been declared eradicated and youre already growing new, clear toenails to replace the war-torn battlefields that once were. Well done!
Unfortunately, it can come back.
A fungal toenail infection is not like a cold. Having had it doesnt really mean your immune system is fully geared up to keep the same case from returning. And, like a cold, there is more than one type of nasty organism out there that can cause similar symptomsin this case, discolored, crumbling, thickened nails.
You know how bad it is. The last thing you want is to fight that battle over again, and people with diabetes should be especially careful of any type of infection. You also dont want anyone you live with to have to go through it, either!
So what can you do to prevent toenail fungus from coming back? Quite a lot.
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Nail Removal Home Remedies And Laser Treatment
In the most serious instances of toenail fungus infection, the toenail may be removed surgically or dissolved with acid. This can be done to just a portion of the nail in the hope that the remaining nail will grow back healthy. In cases where the entire toenail has to be removed, artificial nails and products using light-cured resins to form a temporary covering can be used to protect the underlying tissue until the nail grows back.
If you prefer to go the home-remedy route, such as applying tea tree oil or Vicks VapoRub to your nails, keep in mind that the effectiveness of these products for treating toenail fungus hasn’t been well studied, and they are not recommended by podiatrists.
Finally, the Food and Drug Administration has approved several laser devices for temporary increase in clear nails in patients with onychomycosis. But while laser treatments are vigorously marketed, clinical trials of lasers have reported mixed results, and the treatments may not be covered by health insurance. If you wish to try laser treatment of toenail fungus, speak to your doctor about what to expect from the treatment, and call your insurance carrier to find out whether the treatment will be covered.
Additional reporting by Susan Jara.
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When Should I Call The Doctor
In rare cases, toenail fungus can cause an infection called cellulitis. Without prompt treatment, cellulitis may pose a serious danger to your health.
You should seek treatment guidance from a trusted healthcare provider if you have:
- Circulation problems.
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A Pharmacist Can Help With Fungal Nail Infections
Speak to a pharmacist if the look of your nail bothers you or it’s painful.
They may suggest:
- antifungal nail cream it can take up to 12 months to cure the infection and does not always work
- nail-softening cream it’s used for 2 weeks to soften the nail so the infected part can be scraped off
The infection is cured when you see healthy nail growing back at the base.
When To See A Doctor About Toenail Fungus
If you are experiencing persistent toenail fungus or pain is present, you may need to see a specialist. A dermatologist or podiatrist may be able to assess your symptoms and send a small sample of the affected toenail or flesh to a laboratory to be analyzed as there are various types of fungi and yeasts that cause onychomycosis. Knowing the specific cause of your foot fungus can help identify what route to take to treat your condition.
Nail changes can also be caused by underlying conditions, like psoriasis and diabetes, so its important to seek professional medical advice if your condition persists or worsens. Bacterial and fungal infection of skin in diabetes patients often result in hospital admissions, and in severe cases, can result in amputations. If you are at a higher risk for infection, you should skip home remedies and seek professional medical treatment.
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What Is Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus is a widespread fungal infection that affects the toenails. Less commonly, nail fungus infects the fingernails. Nail fungus is also called onychomycosis.
Toenail fungus happens when fungi get between the toenail and the toenail bed . This usually happens through a crack or cut in your toe.
Fungal Nail Infection Symptoms
Because the toes and feet are often exposed to damp, warm areas, where the infection is spread, fungal nail infections affect the toes more than the fingers. Your feet are also more likely to be exposed to fungal infections if you:
- Spend time at swimming pools
- Walk around a lot in locker rooms
- Wear the same pair of damp, sweaty sneakers all the time
- Injure your toenail
At first, you may have no outward symptoms. But over time, your nails may:
- Have white spots appear on the surface
- Turn white, yellow, green or brown
- Grow thicker than normal or, in some cases, thinner than normal
- Become brittle, with broken or jagged edges
- Change shape, curling up or down
- Lift off of the nail bed
- Smell bad
- Cause you pain
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Signs Of Toenail Fungus
A change in the toenails could indicate a fungus. Symptoms can include:
- Thickening of the nails
- Nails emanating a foul odor
- Change in coloration or texture
- Nail begins to crumble or feels brittle
- Feels painful
- Nail starts to separate from its bed
A first sign is usually a yellow or white spot underneath the tip of the nail. This spreads from there, going deeper and spreading to other toes.
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Best Soak: Purely Northwest Tea Tree Oil Foot & Body Soak
Relaxes muscles with Epsom and sea salts
Essential oils may be potential allergens
If youre looking for an all-natural route to treat toenail fungus, then this foot soak could be for you. Not only is a foot soak a relaxing way to end your day, but the ingredients used in Purely Northwests soak include Epsom salt, sea salt, tea tree oil, and other oils. These ingredients soothe the skin while addressing foot and toenail fungus.
The combined ingredients work to dry out the fungus to prevent it from spreading. Benefits of the soak also include healing cracked feet and soothing aches.
This US-made product has no dyes or synthetic fragrances, making it a great all-natural solution. But results, depending on severity, might take longer to show when using the soak over prescription or over-the-counter treatments.
Active Ingredients: Epsom salt, Dead Sea salt, MSM, and Therapeutic-grade essential oils | Dose: Add 1.5 tablespoons of foot soak mix for every gallon of water. Mix with hands until the salt dissolved. Add additional salts for a more stronger or aromatic foot bath. Soak your feet for About 15-20 minutes. | Uses: Treats fungus all over feet eliminates food odor and aches
Great for athletes and gym goers
Cleanses and deodorizes
Also treats acne, candida, and rashes
Fragrant oils may be overwhelming
Tea tree and lavender sooth skin
Money back guarantee
Results can take several weeks
Only for toe and fingernail fungus
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Is The Distortion Of Your Nails Due To Underactive Thyroid
Fungus nail infection can be caused by thyroid issues. In a small percentage of people this common foot condition is related to sub par or over working of thyroid gland in the body. The thyroid is a small butterfly-shaped gland that sits low on the front of the neck. Its main function is to keep the body warm, keep the immune response at optimum levels and maintain metabolism.
Thyroid problems such as hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism may cause abnormality in nail shape, brittle nails or splitting of the nail bed from the nail plate and dry cuticles.
The reason this nail fungus like symptoms occur is that the thyroid hormone controls the strength with which our heart pumps blood. So stronger the contractions, the greater the amount of blood that will be supplied to body parts, such as the toes. Thus, when pumping are weaker they provide sluggish blood flow, the toes receive decreased amounts of oxygen, get cold and allow for an environment conducive for nail fungus.
Iodine is an important mineral for proper thyroid functioning. Your body uses iodine to make thyroid hormones. Deficiencies of Iodine are commonly found in Europe and Third World countries, where the soil and food supply dont have sufficient iodine levels.
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Who Gets Toenail Fungus
Men are more likely to get it than women. The older you are, the better your chances are, too. People who have diabetes, athletes foot, or a weak immune system, who smoke, or whose family members have it are also at a higher risk. If you spend a lot of time in the water or youve injured your toenail, your odds for getting toenail fungus go up.
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Diabetics Are At Risk For Nail Fungal Infections
In a study published in 2006, 22% of patients with diabetes develop toenail onychomycosis. As mentioned earlier, the complications in diabetes, like neuropathy and peripheral arterial disease, are the main reasons why diabetics have higher susceptibility for fungal infections in the nail. The high blood sugar levels in the body can also contribute in enhancing the growth of fungi in the nails and skin. With diabetics, nail fungal infections are taken more seriously because of the risk for more serious complications like foot ulcers and gangrene.
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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Nail Fungus Sufferers: What Works And What Doesnt
Are you tired of suffering from stubborn and ugly nail infections? Do you long for letting your once beautiful toes see the sunlight again? Do you wonder what its going to take to get rid of the fungus?
Over the years weve had the opportunity to collect testimonials from people who left comments on ToenailFungusTreatments.com, who have used different types of nail fungus remedies. After analyzing them, weve created some useful suggestions for those who want to eliminate nail fungus.
Of course, nothing is ever 100% guaranteed, but if we can learn from others with similar problems, we have a better chance of crossing off one more problem we have from the list that seems to accumulate many problems as we age.
How Doctors Heal Patients
In fact, I was thinking about doctors and how they learn. I know that if you ask any doctor who he or she learned the most from, they will say their patients. In the practice of medicine, a doctor who pays the most attention to the results that their patients are receiving, and makes appropriate adjustments is often the most successful both with people and against disease.
Recognizing this feedback loop was very valuable, we started collecting reports on remedies from our readers and have been able to create some basic guidelines for anyone with nail fungus problems who wants to use these treatments to get clear nails again.
Guidelines From Our Readers about Nail Fungus Remedies
Ugly Toenail Transformed to Beautiful and Perfect