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Fungal infections that appear on the skin are one of the most common infections in humans. Many people are curious about natural toenail fungus treatment, as this is an issue that many folks struggle with. Few are aware that toenail fungus symptoms can actually be a sign of candida virus or yeast within your system.
Onychomycosis or tinea unguium is the name for the type of infection that causes the fungi to appear on the nails. This is caused by underlying fungal growth from dermatophytes, non-dermatophyte molds and yeasts .
With dietary changes, supplements and certain essential oils, you can treat and eliminate the root cause of the toenail fungus, even when youve been struggling with it for years. I will take you through the exact steps of how to get rid of toenail fungus fast and for good.
What Is Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen Peroxide is a naturally-occurring compound used primarily as an antiseptic to kill bacteria and other organisms. Although it is toxic to cells, Hydrogen Peroxide is naturally produced in small amounts in the body as a defense against microorganisms. Available without a prescription, Hydrogen Peroxide is used to disinfect surfaces, small cuts, and scrapes, or treat acne. Hydrogen Peroxide is used in cosmetics to bleach hair or to whiten teeth.
As a surface or instrument disinfectant, Hydrogen Peroxide is used in a wide variety of products. In general, 3% Hydrogen Peroxide is used in the home and 30% or more Hydrogen Peroxide in clinical or industrial applications.
3% Hydrogen Peroxide can be used to disinfectant skin surfaces. At one time, Hydrogen Peroxide was widely used to disinfect cuts, scrapes, and burns. However, Hydrogen Peroxide interferes with the healing process by killing new skin cells, so it is no longer advised for disinfecting wounds.
At one time, Hydrogen Peroxide was a popular treatment for acne because it killed bacteria. Again, however, Hydrogen Peroxide interferes with the healing process making acne scars more likely, so it is no longer advised for use against acne.
Make An Antifungal Foot Soak
Soaking your feet can also be a useful technique in reducing or eliminating toenail fungus. Many common household items can be used to make a healing antifungal foot bath. Mix one or more of the following with warm water and soak feet for 15 to 20 minutes. After foot bath, rinse feet with clean water and pat dry.
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Thieves oil
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Why Trust Verywell Health
As a seasoned health writer, Danielle Zoellner knows the importance of finding just the right product to fit your medical needs. Throughout her career, Danielle has interviewed a variety of experts in the medical and health fields while reviewing dozens of products. Her experience and knowledge in the field work together to help readers like yourself find the best products for your daily life.
Additional reporting for this story by Jennifer Nied
For over 10 years, Jennifer Nied has reviewed products, interviewed experts, scrutinized ingredients, and pored over research studies and claims, to help readers like you understand what works for your specific conditions. Every product in this piece was selected taking into account recommendations from doctors, published research, and real customer reviews.
Essential Oils And Other Home Remedies
Essential oils are also an effective home remedy for the toenail fungus. Mixing tea tree oil, oregano oil, clove oil, or cinnamon oil with a carrier oil and then applying it on the infected toenail fungus will kill the toenail fungus.
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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.
Will Thieves Oil Kill Toenail Fungus
There is no scientific research available regarding thieves oil efficacy against toenail fungus. However, the essential oils used in its preparation, namely, cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, lemon, and rosemary, are effective against mild onychomycosis, thanks to their anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties.
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Why You Should Not Use Bleach To Try And Kill Toenail Fungus
Household bleach can cause chemical burns on the skin and permanent damage to the nerves and tissue in your eyes.
Anytime you are working with strong chemicals, you need to take precautions.
Household bleach manufacturers recommend wearing gloves and using it in well-ventilated areas.
How on earth does this sound like a good idea to try and use a product that is not recommended to come into contact with skin, to treat anything on your body?
What Is Toenail Fungus Exactly
Toenail fungus happens when tiny microscopic organisms called fungi get underneath your toenails, causing an infection, according the American Academy of Dermatology .
Not-so-fun fact: The same fungus that causes jock itch and athletes foot can also cause toenail fungus, which can infect your nails and the skin underneath, says Gary Goldenberg, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York.
Depending on the type of fungus youre dealing with, an infection can cause a slew of unpleasant symptoms, including:
- Nail discoloration
- Debris buildup underneath the nail
- Lifting of the nail from the skin
- Nail thickening or crumbling
- Nail thinning or splitting
Toenail fungus is highly contagious and, if you have a fungal infection on your foot, the fungus can spread to one or more of your nails.
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How Is Toenail Fungus Treated
Toenail fungus is notoriously tricky to treat. You may need to treat the condition for several months to get rid of the fungus. Still, toenail fungus often comes back.
A dermatologist or podiatrist can explain your treatment options. If you have a mild case that doesnt bother you, your provider may recommend no treatment.
Toenail fungus treatment options include:
- Oral antifungal medication: You take prescribed medication, such terbinafine , itraconazole and fluconazole , to treat the fungi. You will need to take this medication every day for several months . Your provider may use blood tests to check for potential medication side effects. These medications can affect the liver and interact with other medications, so oral antifungals are not for everyone.
- Topical medication: You regularly apply a medication right on the nail. The medication treats the fungi over time. Topical medications are most effective when paired with oral medications.
- Laser treatments: Your provider directs a high-tech laser beam and special lights at the toenail to treat the fungus. Lasers are FDA approved for temporary increase of clear nail in nail fungus but is not a cure. Cure rates for laser treatment are lower than oral and topical mediations so they are not typically used as first line treatments for nail fungus.
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An Abundance Of Pseudoscience
A tough problem that embarrasses people makes for a fertile breeding ground for pseudoscience and old wives tales which Liz found when researching online.
Hydrogen peroxide, bleach. I mostly use tea tree oil and lavender, she said.
The abundance of miracle cures touted online makes Tracey Vlahovics life difficult at times.
Oh, dont get me started. If I had a dollar for everything I had heard, Id be a millionaire at this point, she said. From benign treatments such as essential oil, vinegars and mouthwash to the noxious bleach option, Vlahovic has seen it all. Its not just about applying something to the nail, it has to be something that will get through the nail plate and into the nail bed where the infection is. So, it doesnt matter what you use, it has to be able to penetrate.
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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
How Do You Get Rid Of The White Stuff On Your Toenails
How a toenail fungal infection is treated may depend on its severity. In white superficial onychomycosis, for example, the white patches of fungus that form on the nails can sometimes simply be filed off and an over-the-counter antifungal topical medication can be applied to the nail to kill the fungus.
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How Do Dermatologists Treat A Fungal Nail Infection
Treatment usually begins with your dermatologist trimming your infected nail, cutting back each infected nail to the place where it attaches to your finger or toe. Your dermatologist may also scrape away debris under the nail. This helps get rid of some fungus.
To completely get rid of the infection, most people also need one or more of the following treatments:
Medicine you apply to the nail: If you have a mild infection, a medicine that you apply to your nails may get rid of the infection. This treatment helps keep new fungus out while the nails grow. Fingernails typically grow out in four to six months. Toenails take longer, usually takes 12 to 18 months.
Probably the most difficult part of this treatment is remembering to use it as often as prescribed. Some treatments must be applied every day. Others you apply once a week. To get the best results, its essential that you apply these medicines exactly as directed.
The US Food and Drug Administration has approved the following medicines that you apply to the nail to treat nail fungus:
Side effects from these medicines are generally mild. Possible side effects include redness and swelling, an ingrown toenail, and stinging or burning when you apply the medicine. In clinical trials, none of these side effects caused patients to stop using the treatment.
The FDA has approved the following systemic medicines to treat nail fungus:
Why Do I Keep Getting Toenail Fungus
Fungal nail infection can develop in people at any age, but its more common in older adults. As the nail ages, it can become brittle and dry. The resulting cracks in the nails allow fungi to enter. Other factors such as reduced blood circulation to the feet and a weakened immune system also may play a role.
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Top 12 Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Nail Fungus Naturally
Commonly known to the layman as fungal nail infection, Onychomycosis is an infection that occurs when fungus forms beneath the nails. The condition can develop as a result of poor foot hygiene, continuous exposure to moist environments, wearing unbreathable synthetic socks, accumulation of sweat in shoes, imbalanced pH levels of the skin, a compromised immune system, and conditions like diabetes that constricts blood flow.Upon infection, Onychomycosis will cause the nail to thicken, discolor, and eventually crumble into pieces. If left untreated, the condition can become painful. As the infection progresses, areas around the infected toenails or fingernails may swell and begin to give off a foul smell too.
Vicks Vapor Rub For Toenail Fungus Myth Or Miracle Cure
Is VICKS VapoRub for toenail fungus effective?
There our a lot of home remedies out there for curing toenail fungus, but a lot of them simply do not work. You have apple cider vinegar, Epsom salt baths, all the essential oils, etc.
VICKS Vaper Rub, which is really called the trademark name of VICKS VapoRub, is one of the many cheap treatment options out there that some people suggest But Does It Actually Work?
The answer is YES, at least to some extent… It definitely does have some potential as a treatment option as you will see. And… it’s easy to find in stores and it’s cheap, so of course this is something that a lot of people are going to be interested in, especially when you look at other treatment options which can get pretty darn expensive.
Some statistics say that around 10% of the population has at least some amount of toenail fungus and around 50% of people 70 years old and older have it. It’s a pretty crazy statistic and there is no doubt that toenail fungus is a big problem.
Much of the time it goes away on its own due to the body’s effective immune response, but sometimes it can get out of hand and requires serious attention. Of course you do not want that to happen so treating as soon as possible should be a priority.
Toenail Fungus Explained:
- Thickened nails
- Discoloration, usually whitish or yellowish
- Brittle fractured nails
- Darkened color from all the dead debris
- Bad smells and strange looks from onlookers
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How Can I Tell If I Have Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus usually starts subtly, so you might not notice anything different with your nail immediately. After a while, though, you see some noticeable differences that indicate a fungal condition. Nails become:
Because a nail infected with a fungus is compromised, it can also break or split easily. As the condition progresses, itchiness and pain can occur, and the nail becomes separated from the nail bed.
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.
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What Is The Best Medication For Toenail Fungus
Below is a list of the most recommended prescription treatment for toenail fungus.
|Best medications for toenail fungus|
|200 mg once daily for 12 consecutive weeks||Nausea, vomiting, rash, headache|
Dosage is determined by your doctor based on your medical condition, response to treatment, and age. Other possible side effects exist. This is not a complete list. A very rare side effect can be trouble breathing if this occurs, seek immediate emergency medical attention.
Combination Of Vinegar And Hydrogen Peroxide For Nail Fungus
Apart from using hydrogen peroxide for nail fungus treatment, you can also use essential oils one of which is the coconut oil. Coconut oil is a carrier oil with myriads of benefits. It has abundant antioxidant and antifungal properties. Coconut oil relieves the pain associated with nail fungus, destroys the fungus, and a new healthy nail will replace the infected one. This oil can be used both topically and internally without any side effects. When using coconut oil for treating nail fungus, especially internal usage, it is imperative to get one that is organic, unrefined, and cold-pressed, as well as 100% pure.
Treating nail fungus with coconut oil
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