Nail Fungus And Oral Treatments
Nail fungus infections could last a lifetime if they are just left alone. They can be just an unsightly presence in a persons daily life, but they can also bring pain and a lot of harm if the infection worsens and spreads.
This is where treatment comes in. People who suffer from finger and toenail fungus have different treatment options, the most popular of which is perhaps oral medicine. Oral treatments are medications taken by mouth. As such, the medicines work from the inside of the body to heal the outside, supposedly killing the nail fungus infection. These are usually considered when the nail fungus infection is from moderate to severe because they have systemic effect and are able to reach different parts of the body.
Oral anti-fungal treatments are said to have high effectiveness rate. However, they also have high risks. They may also come with side effects, and therefore they are not recommended for some nail fungus sufferers.
What Is The Best Home Remedy For Toenail Fungus
Self-care and body awareness can be key in keeping toenail fungus at bay. Wash feet with warm soapy water and pat completely dry to reduce the spread or growth of fungus on the feet. Allow feet to breathe when possible. Protect your feet and wear breathable shoes and clean socks. Change socks regularly and wash in hot water if you are struggling with toenail fungus. Over-the-counter antifungal powders used for treating athlete’s foot can also be used for treating mild cases of toenail fungus.
Avoid nail polish and pedicures that use polish or nail plate coatings. Even though you may want to conceal the discolored or warped look of an infected toenail, allowing maximum air circulation to the nail and skin of the toes is best.
Alternatives To Oral Medicines
With the side effects that come with taking oral medications, its understandable why many people prefer other alternatives in treating finger and toenail fungus infections. These include topical treatments, essential oils, surgery, and laser therapy.
Anti-fungal topical ointments are traditionally used for mild to moderate nail fungus infections. These are applied on the nails and the skin surrounding them. The main criticism of topical medicines is that they are apparently not as effective as oral drugs because they cannot penetrate the nails to get to the fungus.
However, there are modern and improved topical ointments that address this concern. Products with 10% undecylenic acid effectively heal nail fungus infection with the help of penetrating agents, usually essential oils.
Surgical removal of the nail, on the other hand, is used for severe or recurring fungal infections. After the infected nail is removed, a topical anti-fungal ointment is applied to the nail bed to prevent the regrowth of the fungus.
As for laser treatment, it takes about six months before visible results can be seen. The treatment is expensive as it takes several sessions of therapy during the prescribed period.
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How To Cure Toenail Fungus: Can Vinegar Help
This article was co-authored by Zora Degrandpre, ND. Dr. Degrandpre is a Licensed Naturopathic Physician in Vancouver, Washington. She is also a grant reviewer for the National Institutes of Health and the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. She received her ND from the National College of Natural Medicine in 2007.There are 7 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 19 testimonials and 88% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 1,073,560 times.
Nail fungus refers to a fungal infection that starts underneath your toenails. It could cause discoloration, thickening, or crumbling on one or more of your nails. This is a frustrating problem, so youll naturally want to get rid of nail fungus as soon as possible. One remedy you may have heard of is soaking your foot in vinegar to clear the infection. Vinegar is acidic, so it will kill bacteria and fungus.XResearch source However, this remedy has very limited success because the vinegar cant penetrate under the nail. You can try it if you want to, but visit a podiatrist for further treatment if you dont see any results in 2 weeks.
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.
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What Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider About Toenail Fungus
If you have toenail fungus, you may find it helpful to ask your provider:
- What type of infection do I have?
- Do you recommend I treat it? Why or why not?
- How long will I need treatment?
- What steps can I take to stop it from coming back?
- Should I be aware of any potentially serious complications or treatment side effects?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Toenail fungus is an incredibly common infection that can be difficult to treat. The condition usually isnt painful, but it may make you feel self-conscious about how your foot looks. If it bothers you, talk to your provider about your treatment options. A trained specialist can provide guidance on whats most likely to address your concerns while protecting your overall health.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/17/2020.
Ranking The Best Toenail Fungus Treatments Of 2021
A toenail fungus treatment provides a simple, convenient way for people to address fungal infections of the toenail.
Nearly 35 million American adults suffer from fungal infections of the toenail, with many convinced there is nothing they can do about it.
Fortunately, medical science has made impressive leaps in understanding this vexing condition, and there are now numerous OTC toenail fungus treatments that can provide relief.
We put dozens of the most popular brands to the test and concluded that the following represent the 10 best toenail fungus treatment options of 2021.
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How Can I Prevent Toenail Fungus
Theres no way to guarantee that you wont get toenail fungus. But you can take several steps to help prevent it:
- Avoid going barefoot in communal areas such as hotel rooms / showers, public showers, locker rooms and swimming pools. Most people pick up fungus in these situations. It helps to wear flip flops in these public areas.
- If you have a family member with foot fungus or nail fungus, try to use different shower or wear flip flops in the shower to avoid coming in contact with it.
- Trauma due to accidental or aggressive clipping of the nails can turn into portals of entry for the fungus.
- Clean your nail trimmer before using it.
- Do not tear or rip your toenails on purpose.
- If you have diabetes, follow all foot care recommendations from your healthcare provider.
- Keep your feet dry. Make sure to fully dry your feet after a shower.
- Soak toenails in warm water before cutting them. Or you can cut your nails after a shower or bath.
- Trim toenails straight across .
- Wear shoes that fit correctly. They should not be too loose or tight around the toes.
Can I Take Lamisil If Im Pregnant Or Breastfeeding
It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. You should wait until after your pregnancy to start treating your nail or scalp infection with terbinafine. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
Terbinafine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.
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What The Experts Say
The most common presentation of toenail fungus is a white/yellow discoloration of the nail that is thick and filled with yellow/white keratin debris. The more severe the toenail fungus, the thicker the nail, and the more nails involved makes it that much harder to treat the nails even with effective therapies.” Orit Markowitz, MD, founder and CEO of OptiSkin treatment center in New York City.
Some Side Effects Can Be Serious The Following Symptoms Are Uncommon But If You Experience Any Of Them Call Your Doctor Immediately:
- irritation, itching, burning, blistering, swelling, or oozing at the place where you applied ciclopirox
- pain at the affected nail or surrounding area
- discoloration or change in shape of nail
- ingrown nail
Ciclopirox topical solution may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone .
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How To Use Them
A person interested in trying a blend of essential oils can buy the oils online or from a health food store. Mix the oil with a carrier oil before applying the mixture to the affected nails.
Ozonized oils are oils infused with ozone gas. Examples of oils that are available in ozonized form include sunflower oil and olive oil.
According to , ozonized oils show positive effects similar to a traditional medication called terbinafine cream in treating one type of fungus. In this study, the researchers used rabbits to test the effectiveness of the treatment.
Another study carried out on 400 people tested how ozonized oils affected fungal infections. In this 2011 study , researchers used ozonized sunflower oil to treat toenail fungus.
Their results indicated that ozonized oils cured up to 90.5 percent of the total infections with only a 2.8 percent relapse rate after 1 year. The researchers concluded the ozonized sunflower oil works more effectively than ketoconazole cream, which is an antifungal medication.
Toenail Fungus Creams & Ointments
Common prescription toenail fungus solution treatments include Jublia , Kerydin and Ciclodan / Penlac . Kerydin is comprised of an antifungal medication known as tavaborole. A 5% topical solution, Kerydin was approved by the FDA in 2014. Tavaborole causes fungal cell death by inhibiting a fungal enzyme involved with protein metabolism and utilizes a special boron technology which is supposed to improve nail penetration. Kerydin is indicated for the treatment of Trichophyton rubrum and Trichophyton mentagrophytes.
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To Use Ciclopirox Topical Solution Follow These Steps:
Funginix Finger And Toe Treatment
Funginix Healthy Nail Formula uses the known antifungal undecylenic acid to address nail fungi and send them on their way. There is also tea tree oil along with lavender oil to promote healing and restore nail integrity.
What we like: The one-two antifungal combination of undecylenic acid and tea tree oil does an effective job reclaiming your nails. At the same time, the other ingredients make sure that the new nail tissue is durable and attractive.
Flaws: Those with stubborn infections will need to be patient.
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What Should I Know About Storage And Disposal Of This Medication
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture . Keep the bottle of ciclopirox topical solution in the package it came in, away from light.
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location â one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach.
See A Dermatologist To Pinpoint The Problem
Foot fungus wont just go away on its own, Dr. Ng says. If you think you have foot or toenail fungus, see your dermatologist, she says. There are several tests that your dermatologist can perform to identify exactly whats going on.
Its important to be aware that there are other diseases which can cause nail changes, she says. For example, we do see things like squamous cell skin cancers in the nail beds and even melanomas, which have a brownish or blackish discoloration.
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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.
- Redness, pain or pus near the toenail.
- Weakened immune system.
Doctors Weigh Best Treatments
The best treatment for fungal nail infections is a prescription that your dermatologist can prescribe that you take every day for two-to-three months. The pill is not for everyone, since oral antifungals can interact with other medications and can affect the liver.
Fortunately if you dont want to or cant take a pill, there are topical solutions to treat nail fungus. Although topical medications are desirable because of the low risk of side effects and interaction with other medications, they have much longer treatment regimens. Generally, topical medications have a lower clearance rate compared to oral pills.
Newer topical antifungals including Efinaconazole and Tavaborole have better penetration of the nail plate and so they work better compared to older topical medications, says Dr. Ng. She says the topical medications work best if you only have partial nail involvement.
Lasers are approved by the FDA to temporarily increase the amount of clear nail. However, the cure rates are lower than oral medications and topical solutions.
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What Is Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus is also referred to as onychomycosis . Fungal infections can originate from a variety of molds, yeasts, and fungi that can grow in the cracks of the nail or skin surrounding the toenail. Athlete’s foot, often contracted from locker room floors, is a type of fungus that can lead to an infected toenail or skin infection. The most typical fungus that grows on the feet and leads to needing treatment is called dermatophyte.
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.
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Maphie Nail Repair Pen
The Maphi Nail Repair Pen provides an affordable, surprisingly effective treatment for nail fungus. There is no muss and fuss, and if you use it as directed, you should start to see improvement in two or three weeks.
What we like: O-hydroxybenzoic acid is one of the most powerful non-prescription antifungals you can get. When combined with deacetylated chitin, it weakens the cellular structure of the fungal cells then eliminates them.
Flaws: Applying it three times a day means you may run out before the treatment period ends.
Ariella Nail Fungus Treatment
O-hydroxybenzoic acid is a powerful antifungal agent and is at the heart of the Ariella Nail Fungus Treatment formula. Ariella mixes it with other ingredients that attack the fungus cell walls and facilitate the activity of the O-hydroxybenzoic acid.
What we like: Ariella Nail Fungus Treatment goes after nail fungus with a potent one-two punch that weakens it and then takes it out. Other ingredients restore the nail tissue once it is free of the fungi.
Flaws: Must use two or three times per day in order to see benefits.
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How Fungi Infect The Nail
Onchomycosis, or toenail fungal infection, is an invasion by a microscopic organism that thrives in warm, damp environments. Fungal spores are in the air, and they will grow if they land on a receptive surface like your toenail. They feed off the nail tissues, burrowing into the skin under the nail. Over time the nail thickens and may lift off the nail bed as fungal debris accumulates. Once your nail is raised off the nail bed, it won’t reattach, and a new nail won’t grow from that part of the nail bed. However, your nail will continue to grow from the root at the base.