Toenail fungus can be a chronic problem for many people. It can affect one of more of the toenails and lead to poor appearance of the nails and spreading infection. Toenail fungus can be a particular problem for those with diabetes. Your physician can help you to find remedies for fungus infections of the nails.
What Causes Toenail Fungus?
Toenail fungus is caused by microscopic organisms that can grow in dark and damp places. Feet are the perfect breeding ground for fungus organisms because they remain in socks and shoes for long periods of time, away from sunlight and often damp from sweat. Fungus can also be picked up from public areas like swimming pools and locker rooms.
Aging often brings nail fungus problems because nails grow more slowly as people age and have a poorer blood supply. Men acquire nail fungus infections much more often than women do. These infections also tend to run in families.
Home Remedies That Can Work on Yellow and White Toenail Fungus:
Many home remedies have been used for years to inhibit the growth of toenail fungus:
- Simple household vinegar can be used as a foot soak, with 1 part vinegar and 2 parts water. Soak the feet for up to 20 minutes daily.
- Many people use medicated chest rub applied directly Fungus Clear to the toenails daily to stop the fungus growth.
- Isopropyl alcohol or hydrogen hydroxide applied directly to the affected nails several times a day can also help to clear up the infection.
- Other people have success with tea tree oil, available at health food stores, to treat the nails.
- Others try anti-fungal creams and even dandruff shampoos to treat toenail fungus with some success.
Traditional Medical Treatments
Before you have laser treatments, your physician may also prescribe a number of other methods that are available for nail fungus. The physician may file the surface of the nail and prescribe topical medications can be applied to the nail over a period of time.
Oral medications such as itraconazole can be helpful. Generally, you take this medication for 6 to 12 weeks. It gradually grows a new nail free of fungus and can take up to 4 months to see successful results. An anti-fungal nail lacquer called ciclopirox is also available.
This compound is applied to the affected nail and surrounding skin daily for 7 days. Then, it is removed and a fresh coating is applied. It can take up to a year for complete eradication of the fungus.