Onychomycosis, also known as nail fungus in medical terms, affects a large portion of the world’s population. It is an infection that affects one or more of a person’s nails. The infection at its onset begins as a small white or yellow spot that gets more discolored as the infection progresses. It has been observed that nail infections develop more in toenails than fingernails.
How to Cure Nail Fungal Infections?
Toenails are more susceptible to nail fungus infection, as they are more often than not confined within the shoes creating a moist and warm breeding ground for fungi to thrive and grow. Also as the blood circulation to the feet is slightly lesser than to fingernails hence making it difficult for the body immune system to identify and eliminate infections. Nail infections are generally painless and hence people tend to ignore the symptoms. However, it is important for one to seek the advice of a foot doctor when the symptoms or pain increases.
We will continue this article discussing ten home remedies that will help quickly cure your toenail fungus. In the past people have used common household products to treat nail fungus. Whilst it’s true that most home remedies are not backed by clinical trials, their effectiveness is based upon many generations of experience of users with nail fungus. Natural cures are also popular as they reduce the chances of side effects from prescription medicines. They’re generally more cost effective too and because they contain only natural plant derived ingredients, they are considered safer than using chemical products.
But before you attempt any of these, remember to use a nail cutter and cut any part of your toenail that is exposed. Next, take a filer and gently file your nails before you proceed.
- Vinegar Vinegar is a natural antifungal agent. “Take a vinegar foot bath” has been common advice for many generations. With the application of vinegar, your skin’s pH levels will start to balance naturally. This will kill the bacteria and your nails will no longer play host to further fungal growth. The good thing is, that you can literally just go to your kitchen and use any vinegar that is available since they are all acidic in nature.
- Listerine Listerine is also a great way to eliminate any fungal growth. Listerine has impressive antiseptic properties which helps reduce pain or swelling that you may be experience due to uneven nail growth. Furthermore, the agents in Listerine help shed infected nail fragments and they encourage cell production. You can use Listerine in combination with vinegar and enjoy the healing properties of both agents together.
- Vicks Vapor Rub While not natural, one of the best ways to kill nail fungus is with a topical application of Vicks, daily to the infected nails. With a regular application, Vicks will start getting to work on the dead keratin surrounding the nails. This is the yellow flaky substance that looks so unsightly. With continued treatment. Vicks will start to work its way underneath the nailbed and into the infected skin, killing the nail fungus spores. Topical treatments can produce positive results and start building healthier nails in as little as two weeks.
- Tea Tree Oil The problem with treating yourself with vinegar or Vicks every day is that it will eventually get tiresome and you will probably give up because of the odor and inconvenience. A more effective way to treat nail fungus is by using a solution containing plant ingredients with naturally occurring medicinal properties. One of the most effective of these plants is tea tree oil. This comes from the Melaleuca tree and has been used by the Aboriginal Australians for thousands of years as a natural antiseptic.
- Jojoba and Almond Oil Other ingredients such as almond oil and jojoba are useful for promoting healthy nail growth as they nourish and provide moisture to dry or cracked skin around the infected area.
- Hydrogen Peroxide Everyone has a bottle of hydrogen peroxide lying at home. It’s used all the time! Cleaning ears is among the many famous uses for peroxide. However, you can also treat your toenail fungus with peroxide. The only thing to remember is that use a 3% concentration of peroxide. Do not use a stronger concentration or you may experience irritation afterwards.
- Epsom Salt Epsom salt is loaded with many advantageous properties that will help defeat any sort of fungus growing on your toenails. It is a natural anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and is loaded with antibacterial properties that will help fight your fungus from the moment you start using it. You just need to rub some salt on your toes. It is advisable to dissolve the salt in vinegar before you proceed (mostly for the ease of application).
- Baking Soda Did you know that baking soda is one of the most powerful antifungal agents that are most commonly available in your home? The best way to administer this type of treatment is to mix baking soda with a little bit of water and then gently apply it to the affected area. Make sure to use more baking soda than water, otherwise the solution will get really diluted and the effectiveness will go down.
- Honey Honey has so many uses, it is impossible to list them all. It is one of the best gifts of nature! Whenever you experience an issue, always look up if honey will do you any good. It not only tastes good but also helps in healing all sorts of fungal problems. It helps draw out the toxins from your finger nails and you will see the difference typically in a couple weeks or so. The best way to treat your toenails with honey is by direct application. Once you have honey on your nail, make sure you cover it so that it remains intact.
- Bleach Several people have applied bleach and had successful results in eliminating toenail fungi of all types. I know this works, however, you need to be a bit careful when using bleach. Make sure to dilute the solution properly, or may do more harm than good. You can rinse the affected area with the diluted solution couple times a day until you completely get rid of the fungus.