Toenail Fungus Medicated Nail Polish Treatment
Can I wear nail polish if I have toenail fungus? As mentioned above, there are nail polishes that are medicated so that you can look great and heal the condition at the same time. There are, however, things that you should do to keep your nails as healthy as possible.
If you have hard or brittle toenails, you need to make sure that you keep them as short as possible. When you have hard and brittle nails, you need to make sure that you use the best clippers for really thick toenails.
After taking a warm shower, or using a foot soak, gently file your nails. This will gradually get your nail down to its original thickness. The warm water will soften the nail. The more that you wear the polish, the more of the treatment will sink into the layers of the nail, killing the fungus.
Although other polishes claim to treat the fungus, we have found a select few that work particularly well. Finally, you can paint your toenails attractive colors while also healing your toenails.
You can also get Ciclopirox Nail Lacquer, which is only available via a medical prescription. It doesnt make the nails look more pretty, but its a convenient and effective treatment for people who may be short of time.
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.
What Is The Outlook For Someone With Toenail Fungus
While toenail fungus is common, its usually not harmful. Symptoms mostly affect the look of your toenail.
Toenail fungus may spread to the skin between your toes or other areas of your body. When getting dressed, put your socks on first to reduce the chance of spread.
Treating toenail fungus takes a long time, and it doesnt always work. Even then, toenail fungus often returns. Discuss the pros and cons of treating toenail fungus with your provider to determine whats best for you.
Practicing good hygiene and foot care reduces the chance toenail fungus will come back. If you have diabetes, getting regular foot exams may help you address foot problems before they get serious.
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Treating Toenail Fungus The Right Way
Once a fungus has started to grow, it can take months for it to go away. The longer you wait to treat it, the harder it will be. So, covering it up with polish might seem like a sound option. Unfortunately, that will probably only make things worse.
The best thing you can do to hide the symptoms is to start treating toenail fungus without delay. It will not go away on its own. Continuing to cover up toenail fungus with polish wont help.
There are various antifungal options. You can find an over-the-counter treatment or use a home remedy to get rid of the infection. If your toenail fungus doesnt seem to be going away even with treatment, you may need to consult a podiatrist .
If you want to use nail polish while you have a fungus, you should use an antifungal polish. Avoid using regular nail polish if you currently have an infection or youve used it for an infection in the past. The tools used to apply the polish, or anything it touches can become infected.
What Can I Soak My Toenail Fungus In
For mild forms of this condition, a vinegar soak might work well. The antifungal properties also make vinegar soaks a good idea for people who have toenail fungus. Soak your feet for 10 to 15 minutes daily in a vinegar bath until the infection subsides. You can increase the length of time in the soak gradually.
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How Effective Are Tablets In Treating Nail Fungus
Tablets for the treatment of nail fungus have been tested in several studies. All participants had an infection on their toenails caused by a skin fungus. Overall, the study results showed that tablets are considerably more effective than nail polishes or creams.
One year after a three-month treatment with terbinafine:
- About 17 out of 100 people who didnt have this treatment no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
- About 76 out of 100 people who had this treatment no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
In other words, the treatment with terbinafine got rid of the fungal infection in about 59 out of 100 people.
Itraconazole also proved to be effective. After one year,
- 7 out of 100 people who didnt have this treatment no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
- About 43 out of 100 people who had this treatment no longer had a detectable fungal nail infection.
In other words, the treatment with itraconazole got rid of the fungal infection in about 36 out of 100 people.
Some studies directly compared itraconazole and terbinafine with each other. They confirm that terbinafine is somewhat more effective than itraconazole.
Treatment with breaks is thought to be about as effective as continuous treatment. But that has only been looked into in a few studies.
Hosiery And Toenail Fungus
Wearing pantyhose can lead to sweaty feet and the potential for a toenail fungal infection. “Nylon hosiery doesn’t absorb sweat, so when wearing hosiery inside a shoe, there’s an increased chance of fungal growth,” Zinkin says. If you must wear hosiery, put some antiperspirant or baby powder on your feet before slipping into your stockings. This will help reduce sweating and the chance of fungus growing.
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Precautions When Using Special Nail Lacquers
The anti-fungal components used in special nail lacquers are strong chemicals that are best prescribed under a physicians supervision. Here are some precautionary measures and signals that you should be aware of in case the nail lacquers cause unexpected side effects:
- Using anti-fungal nail lacquers should be directed by a healthcare professional.
- If you experience sensitivity and chemical irritation, treatment should be discontinued and a consultation with a medical specialist is recommended.
- Any redness, itching, burning, blistering, swelling, oozing in the nail or around it should be reported to your doctor.
- Clinical studies have shown that less than 12% of patients were able to completely cure their onychomycosis, which suggests that using nail lacquers work best when combined with other form of treatments.
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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How To Prevent A Nail Infection In The First Place
Trim your nails carefullyingrown nails can arise from cutting nails too short at the edges, since as they grow out they can catch skin. Cut nails straight across and get rid of any pointy corners. And never share clippers, as this can spread infection from person to person even consider bringing your own tools to a professional mani or pedi.
Its also important to wash your feet with soapy water, being sure to get in between your toes, to prevent fungus or bacteria from building up and be sure to dry them thoroughly, since fungus loves a moist environment. Wear breathable socks and use antifungal spray or powder if going sock-less.
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What About Other Nail Care Tools
Its a similar scenario here. As we wrote in last months blog, nail and skin care tools like toenail clippers, nail files, and the like should never be shared from person-to-person. We also recommend you use separate clippers for toenails and fingernails, and clean and sterilize your tools after use.
Check out last months blog for more in-depth tips on preventing toenail fungus!
Bonus tip: although its tempting to try to deal with a fungal toenail by attempting to trim it as short as possible, this is usually counterproductive. Cutting your nail too short usually means more trauma to the nail bed and a greater opportunity for further infection.
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Wearing Antifungal Nail Polish
Baking Soda For Toenail Fungus
People have used Sodium bicarbonate for centuries.
It is a substance that can help us with various conditions, not only with fungus. However, it is especially useful when it comes to skin and nail conditions due to its antifungal and antiseptic properties.
NaHCO is great as it exfoliates surface skin, which in turn destroys layers of fungus located on them. But, that is only a small reason why people use baking soda for toenail fungus. Its alkaline properties are much more important. Sodium bicarbonate creates an acidic environment making it quite hard for fungus to survive.
Baking soda also helps balance the pH level of the surrounding skin. That way, spores are no longer able to reproduce and inhabit the surrounding areas. This localizes the issue, making it easier to eradicate later on.
Another great benefit lies in soda’s ability to absorb moisture. Again, your feet need to be dry at all times. Toenail fungus will affect the whole toenail but is especially persistent beneath them. This area is really hard to dry, unlike surface nail, making it easier for fungus to inhabit. Baking soda effectively puts a stop to it. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should stop paying attention to whether or not your feet are dry. You will also have to do your part in eradicating this nasty condition.
Obviously, there are a lot of pros that should at least persuade you to try it.
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Softening And Scraping Away The Nail
As it can take a long time for antifungal medication to work, some people may prefer to use a treatment that involves softening and removing infected parts of nail over a few weeks.
Treatment kits are available from pharmacies that contain a 40% urea paste, plasters and a scraping device. The paste softens the infected parts of the nail, allowing them to be scraped away so they can be gradually replaced with healthy nail.
To use the treatment:
So What Should You Do If You Develop A Nail Infection
Your first step should be to see a doctor. It can take weeks to fully clear an infection, says Dr. Andersen, so its crucial to get treatment as soon as possible.
Oral medication is the most effective treatment of all, says Dr. McGuire. Topical prescription treatments may also help. Theres a laser treatment that has a higher success rateabout 65% to 70%, says Dr. Andersenbut it can be pricey.
Other steps that can help you heal faster is to wear shoes that dont put pressure on your nails and keep your feet clean.
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Cons Of Wearing Nail Polish When You Have A Nail Fungal Infection
Despite how much nicer and healthier your nails may look when you put on polish on an infected nail, this is just a temporary fix. Wearing it for longer periods might pose more harm than good to your nail fungus problem. Fungi thrives in darker environments and nail polish can easily promote its growth. Many commercial nail polishes use strong chemicals in their product that may only cause further damage to a nail with fungal infection. At the same time, painting a healthy nail right after an infected nail may lead to contamination and affect other healthier nails. When treating nail fungal infections with topical treatments, nail polishes only prohibit its penetration and reduce the solutions efficiency to cure.
How To Apply Antifungal Nail Polish
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White Chalky Patches On Toenails: Fungus Or Dehydrated Nails
Have you ever been to the nail salon and your polish was removed only to uncover white patches? And when the nail technician is questioned she usually states it is due to wearing dark polish, or leaving the polish on too long. You may then nod, and agree to cover the unsightly nail again with polish. Read why this is not the best idea, what could be causing it, and what the remedy is.
White chalky spots on toenails, is if fungus or something else?
White chalky patches on the nail can simply be a result of excessive dehydration of the keratin molecules on the nail surface, causing keratin granulations. It is generally caused by wearing nail polish for too long, using dehydrating nail polish remover too often, or constantly exposing your nails to harsh or drying chemicals . All of these products can dry out the nails, causing the keratin molecules of the nail plate to clump together into chalky-looking formations.
The best way to get rid of keratin granulation is to give your nails a several-week-long break from nail polish, nail polish remover and chemicals in conjunction with using moisturizers and/or hand creams to replenish the moisture balance of the nails.
Initially, tiny white patches appear on the surface of the nail-plate. As the fungus spreads, the nails may dry out and the surface of the nails flake and crumble.
Can I Wear Nail Polish If I Have Toenail Fungus
You may feel tempted to cover up a discolored toenail with nail polish. If you are using a topical antifungal, you probably should not use polish. Some providers may tell you not to wear it in any case. Polish traps in moisture from the nailbed . Because fungi thrive in moist environments, wearing nail polish may make a fungal infection worse. However, the nail continues to grow with or without polish.
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