Treating Fungal Nail Infection
Treatment may not be necessary in mild cases of fungal nail infection. For more severe or troublesome cases, antifungal medication may be recommended.
A fungal nail infection is unlikely to get better without treatment, but if youre not bothered by it you might decide its not worth treating because treatment can take a long time, may cause side effects, and isnt always effective.
Whether or not you decide to have treatment, you should still follow the self-help advice below to help stop the condition getting worse or spreading to others.
What Is The Prognosis Of Fungal Nails
Curing fungal nails can be difficult and treatment can take up to 18 months. Relapse and reinfection are common. Trying to remove or modify your risk factors, if possible, is essential to preventing reinfection. People who have medical illnesses that predispose them to fungal nails can have an even more difficult time eradicating the fungus.
How Effective Are Topical Treatments
So far, only a few studies have looked into topical nail fungus treatments with nail polishes or creams. Because these studies had weaknesses, the results should be interpreted with caution. Amorolfine has not yet been well studied. Ciclopirox polish and treatment sets with urea and bifonazole cream were tested in a few studies.
Research on the effectiveness of nail polish containing ciclopirox showed that, after one year:
- About 10 out of 100 people who did not use ciclopirox no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
- About 32 out of 100 people who used ciclopirox no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
In other words, treatment with ciclopirox got rid of the fungal infection in about 22 out of 100 people. But even if the fungus had gone away, the cosmetic result wasnt always satisfying. The nails only looked healthy after treatment in 7 out of 100 people.
Treatment with sets containing urea and bifonazole cream was tested in one study. It was compared with a treatment in which only urea cream was applied and the nail was removed, but without applying bifonazole cream afterwards. Three months after treatment was completed, it was found that:
- No fungus was visible or detectable in about 41 out of 100 people who only used urea cream.
- No fungus was visible or detectable in about 51 out of 100 people who used both urea and bifonazole cream.
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Sets With Creams And A Nail Scraper
Treatment sets that contain two creams and a nail scraper can also be used for the topical treatment of nail fungus:
- One cream has urea in it, which softens the nail so it can be removed.
- The other cream contains bifonazole, which has an antifungal effect.
For this treatment, the affected toe or finger first has to be soaked in warm water for ten minutes and then dried. After that, the urea-based cream is applied to the nail, and the nail is covered with an adhesive bandage. After 24 hours, the bandage is removed and the toe or finger is held in warm water again. The softened layer of the nail is then scraped off using a spatula, the cream is applied again and the nail is covered with a new bandage. This treatment is carried out over 14 days. Once the infected part of the nail has been scraped away completely, the skin beneath is treated for another four weeks with a bifonazole cream.
What Is The Most Effective Treatment For Toenail Fungus
Open-toe footwear like sandals and flip flops tend to stay in the closet all winter long, unless of course youre going on vacation or you live in Hawaii. That can be a good thing, because not only do toes always need to be kept warm, but there are instances when those toes arent exactly what youd want to have on display. Were talking about toenail fungus, and if you have it, then you may just want to keep wearing closed-toe footwear year-round to save others from having to see that. Or you may want to be smart about it and get rid of the infection. So, what is the most effective treatment for toenail fungus?
Lets agree that when it comes to something that is so unsightly the most effective treatment is going to be one that gets rid of ALL the fungus and accomplishes that effectively and as soon as possible. Fortunately thats entirely possible with toenail fungus medications like Jublia and all thats required of you is to apply the solution onto your toenail and then let it get work knocking out the fungal infection. Its certainly easy to do, but you may need to patience while you let the solution work its magic. Patience is important as some fungal infections can take up to 4 months to eliminate completely.
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Cure For Toenail Fungus
Contrary to what is often thought about the source of toenail fungus, the condition is related to minor or major injury, rather than from poor hygiene. This is why athletes are some of the most common victims of the condition. As they engage in sport activity athletes toes push up against their shoes, directly jamming nails into the shoe and lifting up the nail for fungus to fester. This seemingly minor injury is most often the cause of toenail fungusnot poor hygiene. Luckily, there are several treatment types and preventative measures available or a cure for toenail fungus, depending on its severity.
What Side Effects And Drug
The possible side effects of itraconazole include headaches, dizziness, stomach and bowel problems, and rashes. Itraconazole can also interact with a number of other drugs. These include cholesterol-reducing and blood-sugar-lowering medications, as well as certain sleeping pills. It is therefore important to let your doctor know about any medication you take. Itraconazole is not an option for people with heart failure . It also isnt suitable for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Terbinafine can cause gastrointestinal problems and a temporary loss of taste and smell. It can also interact with certain antidepressants and heart medications. Overall, terbinafine has far fewer drug-drug interactions than itraconazole. Nevertheless, its still important to tell your doctor if you are taking any other medication. As a precaution, this medication should not be taken during pregnancy or if you are breastfeeding.
The studies only rarely reported on how often the different side effects occurred. But most people tolerate nail fungus medications well. Only a few people in the studies stopped treatment because of side effects.
But there is a very small risk of liver damage from taking itraconazole or terbinafine. For this reason, people with a liver disease are only given these medications if its absolutely necessary.
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What Is A Fungal Infection
Fungus, plural fungi is a class of organisms with over 144,000 known species. Fungus holds great importance for the environment and medical sector. Fungi are considered as one of the most widely distributed organisms worldwide Some are found free-living in soil or water others from parasitic or symbiotic relationships with plants or animals. Some common examples of fungi include Mushroom, mildews and mold. However, not all types of fungi are harmful but some can cause severe suffering for human beings and other living organisms.
Fungal infections are common all over the world and it only occurs when an invading fungus captures over the human body and the immune system of human is too weak to combat. Fungi are populated in our environment and are found flying freely in the atmosphere, they also divide and reproduce in the tiny spores that are present in the air. These fungi that are not visible to eh naked eye can enter into the human body through our respiratory system and can land inside to form a parasitic relationship within our lungs, throat, liver or any other hospitable part of the body causing a severe infection. In some cases, fungi also attack the intestines or the genital area of the human body causing severe hazard to health however, almost all the infection caused by fungus are curable with proper care and treatment.
Terbinafine For Toenail Fungus Treatment
The best pill for toenail fungus is terbinafine. Evidence suggests it works better than the alternatives with the fewest side effects. Terbinafine results in resolution of toenail fungus 76% of the time. Common side effects may include headaches, skin rash, and vomiting. It is taken once a day for 6 to 12 weeks.
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Keep Your Feet Dry And Clean
Its important to prevent athletes foot. Fungus can grow in dark, moist areas, making your feet an ideal place for athletes feet to develop. If you have athletes foot , keep your feet as dry and clean as possible.
Change your socks regularly. As soon as youre done working out, clean your feet and put on a fresh pair of socks. Dry the space between your toes. Dont go barefoot in public pool or gym areas.
You should also use shoes that are well ventilated and allow your feet to breathe to help athletes foot resolve more quickly.
Apple Cider Vinegar For Toenail Fungus
Treating toenail fungus with apple cider vinegar is also a common practice. Apple cider vinegar is a common kitchen staple available in almost every house.
Many people wonder how the apple cider vinegar can kill toenail fungus? well, the apple cider vinegar has two acids, the maleic acid and the acetic acid. Both these acids are meant to disturb the pH of the toenail fungus and ultimately kill it.
Having apple cider vinegar as a treatment of nail fungus is quite long. It will take almost 6 to 7 months to kill toenail fungus. To get fast results you need to add it in your diet as well to strengthen your immune system.
All its ingredients are very common, and you can have them whenever needed, but instead of taking each antifungal and immunity booster you must have a single supplement for it.
Ways to use apple cider vinegar to treat toenail fungus
- Make a foot soak, making a foot soak is quite easy and it will only take a few minutes. Add two tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in two liters of water. Soak your feet in it for almost 30 minutes a day.
- Mix apple cider vinegar with baking soda. As baking soda is already a home remedy for nail fungus, mixing it with apple cider vinegar will only reinforce its effect. You need to make a paste of the two and apply on the nail fungus with a Q-tip.
Pros of using apple cider vinegar for nail fungus
Cons of using the apple cider vinegar as a remedy for nail fungus
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Laser Treatment For Toenail Fungus
At Weil Foot & Ankle Institute, we understand that many of our patients come through our doors experiencing discomfort due to toenail fungus. We are dedicated to providing our patients with the industrys leading and highest quality treatment options. We offer two patented, state-of-the-art laser treatments for toenail fungus removal.
The Erchonia Lunula Laser device is a Low-Level Laser Light that is specifically designed for treating toenail fungus. This laser uses a unique dual-diode approach to target the root causes of fungal infection and improve the bodys natural defense mechanisms. A so-called cold laser, this treatment does not cause any sensation of heat, is FDA approved, and has a proven track record of successful fungus treatment.
The PinPointe FootLaser® is a carefully designed device that uses a laser beam to go through the nail plate to eliminate the infection that causes nail deformity at its source. The laser heats and kills the germs causing the fungus without harming healthy tissue. The treatment is virtually painless, can be done in the office without anesthesia, and is extremely effective for stubborn nail fungus cases. Over 80% of patients treated with PinPointe have shown substantial improvement and most fungal nails are completely cured!
Toenail fungus is of greater concern if you have diabetes, poor circulation, or another condition which inhibits your bodys ability to fight infection.
When Are The Different Treatments Considered
Most doctors recommend treating nail fungus with nail polish or cream if
- not much more than half of the nail is affected by the fungus,
- the base of the nail is not infected, and
- only some nails are affected.
Topical treatment is also usually recommended for children. One reason for this is that most oral medications arent suitable for children. Another reason is that children have thinner nails that grow more quickly, so its assumed that treatment with nail polish or creams is more likely to work in children than in adults. White superficial onychomycosis is also often treated with a nail polish or cream.
If several nails are infected by the fungus, or if the infection has spread out more on the affected nails, its usually necessary to take oral medication. And if the infection started at the base of the nail, its highly likely that only tablets will help.
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Ozonized Sunflower Oil And Other Ozonated Oils
Ozonized sunflower oil combines sunflower oil and ozone and is made by treating the sunflower oil with ozone which leads to an ozone reservoir that slowly releases into the skin or nail area. Ozone is one of the best bacteriacidal, antifungal, and antiviral agents known and represents a promising and needed alternative to current antimicrobials, because it is cheap to make and can avoid resistance. A laboratory study showed ozonized sunflower oil inhibited the growth of 5 different strains of fungi, although this was less than with conventional agents such as fluoconazole or itraconazole. Another study that compared ozonized sunflower oil twice a day for three months to ketoconazole 2% cream, found 90.5% were cured and 9.5% reported an improvement in their nail fungus with Oleozon compared to only 13.5% cured with ketoconazole and 27.5% improved. 59% remained the same.
Verdict: Ozonized oils including ozonized sunflower oil are promising antifungal agents that appear significantly more effective than conventional agents when used to treat toenail fungus.
Is It Possible To Prevent The Recurrence Of Nail Fungus
Tinea pedis, also known as athlete’s foot or foot fungus, can cause recurrence of fungal nails. Therefore, it is important to manage this condition. One can apply over-the-counter antifungal medicines such as clotrimazole or terbinafine cream as directed to affected skin. Keeping footwear and socks clean can be helpful. You can also use portable UV light sanitizers to disinfect shoes.
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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
What Are The Most Effective Treatments For Toenail Fungus
The experts at Easton Dermatology Associates offer treatment customized to your exact situation, whether youve just noticed an irregularity with your toenail or youve been battling fungus for a while. Treatment options include:
- Prescription oral antifungal medications
- Topical nail cream
- Special antifungal nail polish that allows your nails to breathe
No matter what treatment you adopt, patience is key. It can take several months to clear up toenail fungus because even nails that grow at an average rate dont grow rapidly. We treat your fungus until its a thing of the past, and we also advise you on how to prevent a recurrence.
Its much easier to solve the problem when youre in the early stages of infection, before it becomes too advanced.
Do at either of our locations in Easton or Salisbury, Maryland, so we can start helping you eliminate embarrassing and persistent nail fungus problems ASAP. When next summer rolls around, you can be back in those oh-so-chic sandals!
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Toenail Fungus Home Care
Sometimes itâs possible to treat your toenail fungus at home. You can try:
- Over the counter antifungal creams or ointments. File or cut off any white markings on your nails. Soak your nails in water and dry off before you put on the medicated cream.
- Special nail care. If you keep your nails trimmed, it can reduce the pressure and pain you feel. You can also thin your nail bed by filing it down. This can help antifungal creams get to the problem easier.