Is your toenail getting thick, yellow and brittle along with swelling of the toe?
It may be due to toenail fungus which is medically known as Onychomycosis or tinea unguium. It is a very common problem, especially those who expose their feet in water for long or are careless regarding foot hygiene. It is a fungal infection and is also caused by yeast and molds. These microorganisms enter through the cracks and cuts in the skin.
The infection starts with a small yellow or white spot on the tip of your toenail and then spreads deeper. It may affect several nails and fingernails, but it most commonly affects toenail. Usually, this condition is not painful unless the infection spreads.
The symptoms of toenail fungus are as follows:
- Thickening of the nail
- The nail may be cracked, brittle or crumbly.
- The shape of the nail gets distorted.
- Nails lose their shine and luster.
- Building up of a dark color debris under the nail.
What Causes Toenail Fungus
Toenail fungus is common in people who live in moist and humid climate. A male with a family history of toenail fungus is more at the risk to develop it. Old people are also at risk of developing it.
Some of the common causes are listed below:
- Prolonged exposure to the moisture
- Diabetes is resulting in poor blood circulation.
- Synthetic socks that limit proper ventilation.
- Unhygienic conditions.
- Athlete’s foot.
- Walking barefoot, especially in communal areas.
- Sharing shoes, socks, and bed with one having toenail fungus.
- Using public swimming pools.
- Poor immunity
- Abnormal skin pH level.
How To Get Rid Of Toenail Fungus?
It is very important to get rid of toenail fungus fast or it may cause partial or complete loss of the nail. In those who have poor immunity or have diabetes, the condition may complicate into skin infection and cellulitis. In some neglected cases, the infection may spread to other nails.
There are topical anti-fungal creams available in the market to treat toenail fungus, but they are not much effective as they cannot penetrate into the nails. Oral anti-fungal medicine is effective in getting rid of toenail fungus, but they may cause side effects such as rash, headache, dizziness, and diarrhea. They may also cause kidney and liver issues. Also, there is no guarantee for complete removal of the fungus and the condition may recur.
The good news is that in most of the cases, simple home remedies and enough to treat this condition. Below are safe, inexpensive and effective home remedies to get rid of toenail fungus.
8 Home remedies To Get Rid Of Toenail Fungus – Toenail Fungus Cure & Treatment
1. Tea tree oil– It is widely used to treat skin problems as well as toenail fungus. It is a natural anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and an anti fungal.
How to use:
- Clean your toe and nail by rubbing alcohol.
- Put 2 to 3 drops of 100 percent tea tree oil on a cotton swab.
- Apply it directly on the toenail fungus.
- After 10 minutes scrub the affected nail gently.
- Repeat this 2 times daily to get rid of toenail fungus in about 24 weeks.
* Do not dilute tea tree oil or it won’t be much effective
* Do not apply 100 percent tea tree oil to your skin or it may cause irritation.
2. Apple cider vinegar– Due to the acidic nature of apple cider vinegar it kills the fungi and prevents the growth and spread of the fungus.
How to use:
- Take 4 cups of water in a small tub.
- Add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar to it.
- Now add 2 tablespoon Epsom salt to this solution
- Mix well.
- Soak your feet in this solution for 30 minutes.
- Repeat this 2 times until you rid of toenail fungus.
3. Orange oil– It is an effective anti-fungal and kills the fungi.
How to use:
- Clean your toe and nail.
- Put a few drops of orange oil on the affected nail with a dropper.
- Wait for 45 minutes to an hour, so that oil is soaked well.
- Repeat this daily for a few months.
* As citrus allergies are common, test this oil by applying at a spot on your skin before applying it to the toenail fungus.
4. Baking soda– Baking soda neutralizes the acidic environment. This way it inhibits the growth of fungi as they are unable to grow in acidic medium.
How to use:
- Take Half cup of baking soda in a small tub
- Add Half cup of Epsom salt to it.
- Add one-fourth cup of 3percent hydrogen peroxide,
- Mix the ingredients.
- Immerse your affected toenail in this solution for a few minutes.
- Rinse off your foot with clean water
- Thoroughly dry the affected foot.
- Repeat this process 2 times a day for a few months.
- Take a teaspoon of sodium carbonate
- Add an equal amount of sodium borate which is a fungicide.
- Mix ingredients to form a paste.
- Apply the paste on the affected area.
- Rub it for 10 minutes.
- Repeat this 2 times daily for a few weeks to get rid of toenail fungus.
5. Coconut oil- Caprylic acid present in the coconut oil penetrates deep into the cell wall of fungi. This dissolves the fungus and kills them.
How to do:
- Soak a cotton ball in the coconut oil.
- Apply it directly over the toenail fungus.
- Rub it for a few minutes.
- Repeat this several times for few months.
6. Garlic and white vinegar – Allicin and ajoene present in the garlic are fungicides and helps to get rid of toenail fungus. White vinegar is acidic in nature and restricts the growth of fungus.
How to do
- Take 2 tablespoon olive oil.
- Add some crushed pods of garlic to it.
- Boil the mixture for few minutes.
- Strain the oil and cool it.
- Take equal amount of this oil and white vinegar.
- Mix them well and apply to the affected part.
- You may cover the toenail fungus with a cloth.
- Leave it for 2 two to 3 hours and then remove the bandage.
- Repeat this every day until the infection disappears.
7. Lavender oil- Due to its anti-fungal properties, lavender oil helps to get rid of toenail fungus. It has amazing healing benefits and also prevents reinfection.
How to use
- Soak a cotton ball in lavender oil
- Apply it directly and rub it for 15 minutes over the infected part.
- To let the oil soak well you may cover the affected part.
- Repeat this daily for several times until the infection disappears.
8. Lemon Juice– It is antifungal and antiseptic. being acidic lemon juice not only inhibits the growth of fungi but also helps to get rid of toenail fungus.
How to use:
- Squeeze 4 to 5 drops of lemon juice.
- Mix it with an equal amount of olive oil.
- Apply and massage it over the infected part.
- Repeat this 3 times for few months.
9. Oregano oil- It contains thymol which is anti-fungal and antibiotic. It restricts the growth of fungi. nad prevents the infection from spreading to other nails.
How to use:
- Take few drops of Oregano Oil.
- Mix it with a half tablespoon olive oil.
- Apply it over the infected nail.
- Let the affected past soak in it for 30 minutes
- Rinse off your foot and pat it dry.
- Repeat this 2 times in a month to get rid of toenail fungus.
You may also use combinations of above-mentioned home remedies. These home remedies are easily available and are used since old times to treat infections. It may take 6 months to a year to get rid of toenail fungus so do have patience. Apart from the above home remedies make sure not to walk barefoot on the damp ground, take care of foot hygiene, clean your shoes often and wear cotton socks. Even after toenail fungus disappear continue the home treatment for 1 or 2 weeks to prevent the regrowth.