Natural Ways To Deal With Nail Fungus
Fight the funk.
This article was written by Hallie Levine and provided by our partners at Prevention.
That pedicure you shelled out big bucks for may have left you with an unwelcome gift: onychomycosis, otherwise known as nail fungus. Or maybe it’s a souvenir from the shared showers at your gym or your barefoot walks around the public pool. Although it starts innocuously enough, as a white or yellow spot underneath your finger or toenail, your nail can start to thicken and even crumble as the fungus penetrates deeper and deeper. Ick. And fungus is more likely to appear and persist in your toenails because your tootsies are often confined in the warm, moist environment of your shoes, where these little buggers can thrive.
If you see a dermatologist, you’ll most likely get a prescription for an antifungal oral medication such as Lamisil or Sporanox, which tend to be expensive, don’t always work, and carry side effects ranging from skin rashes to potentially toxic liver damage. “That’s not pleasant, which is why so many people look for a drug-free alternative,” says Joe Graedon, a pharmacologist at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy at Chapel Hill and author of The People’s Pharmacy. There are newer topical treatments, such as Kerydin, but they also require a prescription and can take up to a year to work. Here are some of Graedon’s top drug-free remedies for toenail fungus.
How To Prevent Toenail Fungs
Prevention is always better than cure, and therefore, taking precautions to avoid toenail fungus is as important as treating toenail fungus.
- Remember to wear flip-flops or shower sandals when entering public areas such as gyms, locker rooms, changing rooms near pools, spas, and public showers.
- Whenever your socks get sweaty, change them into a clean pair, and dont reuse worn socks without washing them.
- Choose shoes that fit comfortably, have room to breathe, and keep your feet dry.
- Keep your shoes in direct sunlight regularly to kill any fungus or bacteria.
- Never wear damp shoes or socks.
- Use sanitized nail clippers and other nail styling tools.
Here Are 5 Places And Scenarios Where You Might Catch A Toenail Fungus:
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Tinea Manuum Vs Hand Dermatitis Whats The Difference
It can be difficult to tell apart tinea manuum infections and hand dermatitis . One way that doctors can tell if the red scaly itchy rash is a fungal infection is by taking a swab for analysis.
According to some dermatologists, there are some visible signs that can help to tell the difference between a fungal infection and eczema. For example, hand fungus rashes usually have a raised edge and usually just appear on one hand.2
Also, Dr. Jeffery John Meffert on eMedicineHealth says that tinea infections will often affect the palms of the hand, whereas eczema is generally on the backs of the hands.
Tips To Prevent Fungal Nail Infections
Making a few simple lifestyle changes can help prevent a fungal infection of the nails. Taking good care of your nails by keeping them well trimmed and clean is a good way to prevent infections.
Also avoid injuring the skin around your nails. If youre going to have damp or wet hands for an extended amount of time, you may want to wear rubber gloves.
Other ways to prevent fungal infections of the nails include:
- washing your hands after touching infected nails
- drying your feet well after showering, especially between your toes
- getting manicures or pedicures from trustworthy salons
- avoiding being barefoot in public places
- reducing your use of artificial nails and nail polish
Products to help you avoid nail fungus
If youre prone to excessive moisture around your fingernails or toenails, consider buying:
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What About The Cost Of Oral Medications For Fungal Nails
A further consideration is cost. Because newer oral antifungal agents are very expensive, some insurance companies balk at paying for what they consider a “cosmetic issue,” unless nail fungus causes pain or other functional symptoms. Terbinafine and fluconazole are now available as generic drugs and are quite inexpensive.
How To Get Rid Of A Cat Toe Infection
Cat Toe Infection Treatment 1 Nail Damage. Nails can get torn in fights, or more commonly, when the nail gets snagged in 2 Removal of Broken Nails. This procedure can be done at home, using nail trimmers. 3 Other Causes of Infection. Microorganisms such as bacteria can cause paronychia, 4 Treatment: Antibiotics are prescribed to control
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Diagnosis Of Hand Fungus Or Fungus On Fingers
The diagnosis done by the clinical exposition and other skin diseases that have a similar aspect should be excluded.
Further diagnostic examinations are the same as for other dermatophyte contaminations and may include skin scrapings, fungal cultures or biopsy.
A characteristic clinical sign that is evocative of the skin rash being fungal in origin is called the two feet one hand syndrome. In this instance, both feet may have the same dermatophyte rash and one hand .
It is typically the commanding hand or hand that is used for grooving the feet that are infected with the rash.
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How Do Health Care Professionals Diagnose A Fungal Nail Infection
Fungal nail infection can be identified by its appearance. However, other conditions and infections can cause problems in the nails that look like fungal nail infection. Fungal nail infection must be confirmed by laboratory tests before beginning treatment, because treatment is long, expensive, and does have some risks.
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How Do Dermatologists Diagnose Nail Fungus
To find out if a patient has nail fungus, a dermatologist examines your nails and nearby skin. Its important to check the skin because the fungus can spread. You may already have a skin infection caused by fungus like athletes foot.
To get rid of the infection, you will need to treat all infected areas.
Before giving you the diagnosis, your dermatologist may also take some samples. Collecting a bit of debris from beneath a nail, trimming off part your nail, or scraping off a bit of skin can be very helpful. In a lab, these samples can be examined under a microscope to find out whats causing the problem.
Are you hiding an infected nail with nail polish?
Be sure to ask your dermatologist if you can wear nail polish while treating nail fungus.
Fungal Nail Infection Symptoms
Symptoms are different depending on which type of fungal nail infection you have. They usually start mild and get more serious.
- At first, you may only see a white or yellow spot under your nail. Over time, this spreads and can turn your whole nail white, yellow, green, or black.
- The nail may thicken and could be hard to trim.
- It may start to curl up or down or loosen from the nail bed.
- Your nail could become brittle and crumble when you touch it.
- Your nail may become misshapen.
- You may notice a bad smell.
Itâs easy to ignore fungal nail infections at first, since you may not have any pain. But if you donât treat them, it can hurt to put any pressure on the area. If an infection gets bad enough, it could even become hard to walk.
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What Causes A Nail Fungal Infection
The infection is usually caused by exposure to a fungus. The fungus grows in wet, dark conditions. The fungus grows when your feet are in warm, sweaty environment . It enters your nail through a crack in the nail.
Nail fungal infections happen at any age. They are more common in adults older than 60 years of age. They are common in people who have diabetes or circulation problems. They also are common in people with a weakened immune system. Men are more likely than women to get fungal nail infections.
Factors That Increase The Risk Of Nail Fungus
- Wearing tight shoes all day. Sandals are better try to wear them when you can.
- Playing a lot of sports. Long-distance running or any other endurance sport can make your feet very sweaty. Remaining in that state for a long period of time puts you at high risk.
- Not changing your socks frequently enough. Socks can absorb moisture and create a breeding ground for fungus.
- Athletes foot. The fungus that causes this condition can spread to your nails.
- A humid environment. This makes it easy for you to develop fungus on both your fingernails and toenails.
- Damage to the nail particularly if it occurs regularly. Wounds are especially prone to infection.
- Going barefoot in communal areas. In places such as locker rooms and around swimming pools, its better to wear flip-flops.
- Using artificial nails. They can cause an allergic reaction or wear down the nails, making them more vulnerable.
Onychomycosis is the proper term for nail fungus. Common symptoms are thickened, brittle, and discolored nails.
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What Causes Fungal Nails And What Are Some Of The Risk Factors
In normal, healthy people, fungal infections of the nails are most commonly caused by fungus that is caught from moist, wet areas. Communal showers, such as those at a gym or swimming pools, are common sources. Going to nail salons that use inadequate sanitization of instruments in addition to living with family members who have fungal nails are also risk factors. Athletes have been proven to be more susceptible to nail fungus. This is presumed to be due to the wearing of tight-fitting, sweaty shoes associated with repetitive trauma to the toenails. Having athlete’s foot makes it more likely that the fungus will infect your toenails. Repetitive trauma also weakens the nail, which makes the nail more susceptible to fungal infection.
Elderly people and people with certain underlying disease states are also at higher risk. Anything that impairs your immune system can make you prone to getting infected with the fungus. These include conditions such as AIDS, diabetes, cancer, psoriasis, or taking any immunosuppressive medications like steroids.
What Are The Main Types Of Toenail And Fingernail Fungal Infections
There are many types of fungal nail infections that develop over time and can be caused by a different class of fungi. Since the development of infection is a gradual process so a slight change in the texture or look of the nail should be considered seriously before it gets much worse. Some of the most common types of fungal infections that affect majorly the areas surrounding fingernails and toenails are listed below. All these nail infections are sub-classes of onychomycosis.
Distal subungual onychomycosis
The most common type of fungal nail infection is DSO caused by the same fungi that are behind the Athlete’s foot. It is the infection that affects the nail and the skin present under the nail, known as the nail bed. The infection originates from the nail bed and partial nail turns yellow or white, which is the first indication of DSO. In this type of infection debris, bacterial dirt, broken nail fragments and pieces of dead skin accumulate under the nail and as the condition worsen the nail could also crumble and break. DSO is a lifelong infection that can be difficult to overcome and even harder to treat. Improper care and wearing tight shoes may worsen the condition.
White superficial onychomycosis
Proximal Subungual onychomycosis
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Treating The Fungus With Prescription Drugs
How To Choose The Best Supplement For Fungal Infection
You have to be careful when searching for supplements. Before you take anything, you have to do deep research based on your condition.
Although these supplements are the best nail fungus treatments, you have to get in touch with your doctor before taking anything.
And, if youre not allergic to anything or dont have an infected nail condition that requires surgical procedures, then go on and buy these products.
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How Do You Get Rid Of Green Nail Fungus Tr
A skin illness known as athletes foot, often known as tinea pedis, is commonly the beginning point.
As the infection advances, it is usual for the nail to start turning out to be abnormally. During the course of time, the look of the nail changes progressively. Mild discomfort and even acute pain may occur on account of these signs. The sides of the nails and the cuticles can become frustrating or tender every so often. If the fungus has advanced to a complicated stage, the nail may begin to bleed and the cuticles may start to separate. The color of the nail can range from yellowish-green to dark yellow or brown, dependent on the species. Frequently, the nail develops thicker and has white spots or irregular holes and grooves, in addition to other traits. The majority of the time, nail fungal infections are not extraordinarily contagious, but they can still be passed from one individual to another. When going for walks on damp public surfaces, always wear something on your feet and avoid permitting your hands or feet to become too wet for a longer period of time. When it involves nail fungal infections, prevention is far more straightforward than cure. If youve got a bent to increase nail fungus, keep your nails clean and trim them on a regular basis.
Immune Booster For Stopping Fungal Growth: Triple Fungus Blast
This is yet another antifungal drug that treats the affected nail and boosts the immunity of the epidermis.
Many people get tenacious nail and toenail infections during the summer. Sharing nail clippers, locker rooms, and swimming pools are the most common epicenters of disease.
And, if you happen to have low immunity, this might be the end of you.
This supplement works better than generic antifungal creams.
It cures the infected nail, the toenails, and the surrounding skin from a toenail fungal infection.
But that isnt all. This supplement set works by improving gut health and reducing inflammation throughout the body.
Thanks to this product, you will never have to go to late-night visits to the doctor.
- Tea Tree Oil
How does it work?
The key to this product is its formula. Only natural ingredients are included in this blend. Theyre carefully selected so that they work their way through the body and treat the nail infection.
This product is excellent because the nutrients treat the inflammation in a period from six weeks to a few months. I mean, can you find a better cure?
Your doctor might recommend you this supplement if the other topical creams dont work.
No wonder this product is one of the best sellers.
You only have to take two capsules a day.
The nail treatment might be gradual and take some time, but its worth it.
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Preventing Toenail Fungus From Spreading
While you can’t avoid contact with the microscopic organisms that cause toenail fungus its present anywhere that is warm, dark, or moist keeping your feet clean and dry and clipping your nails properly can help prevent an infection.
For fungus to grow, there needs to be some type of trauma to the nail where the nail-skin junction, or natural barrier, is disrupted, says Sheth. For example, from a pedicure, ill-fitting shoes, or the repetitive trauma of running or hiking that causes the nail to lift or get pressed on from shoes or boots.
Still, some people are more vulnerable than others, she adds. Some people have it only on one toe or one foot, and some have lived with a partner who has it but they never get it,” Sheth says. “And for some you see it in their entire family. It’s not as straightforward as it seems, and it’s an annoying problem.
If you do get a toenail fungus infection, these measures can help stop it from spreading:
Getting rid of established toenail fungus can be difficult. Successfully eliminating it depends on careful adherence to a treatment plan.
“What happens over time is that the fungus breeds in the nail tissue and goes from being just a little bit on the nail, to a really discolored and thickened nail, to a nail that is totally embedded with fungus,” explains Marlene Reid, a doctor of podiatric medicine in Naperville, Illinois, and a spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association.