Nail mycosis, or scientifically known as onychomycosis, is an infection caused by fungi such as mold or yeast, which leave the fingernail yellow, deformed and thick.
Usually, the treatment of nail mycosis is done with antifungal enamels or oral antifungal medicines prescribed by the dermatologist such as fluconazole or Itraconazole, for example. However, some home treatments for nail mycosis such as immersing your feet in warm water and using natural creams or lotions can help in the treatment.
Mycosis of the toenails is contracted mainly when walking barefoot in swimming pools or public baths, or wearing tight shoes, while mycosis of the toenails occurs especially when sharing manicure materials.
5 common causes of fungi in the toenails
Most cases of onychomycosis are caused by dermatophytes. Dermatophytes are fungi that can cause superficial skin, hair, and nail infections. These fungi cause an infection when they come into contact with infected items such as shoes, socks, etc.
Yeasts and moulds are also responsible for fungal infections. Excessive yeast growth, also known as Candida infection, can cause fungi in the toenails.
These are the most common causes for someone having fungal toenails:
Walking barefoot in public places: of course, taking off your shoes can be a very pleasant sensation but it can also cause fungus on your toenails. Onychomycosis begins when moisture is trapped under the fingernail.
This can easily happen when walking barefoot: It is also easy to pick mushrooms when walking in public places as fungi can survive for up to 6 months at sites. The most common public places where you can pick mushrooms on your toenails include swimming pools and public showers. Protect yourself by wearing sandals in public pool areas and public showers.
Damage to the toenail: there are two types of injuries that may occur to the toenail. The first is a sharp trauma in which the nail is affected over and over again, as in the case of a runner wearing shoes that do not fit well.
The other thing that can happen is a trauma in which something falls on a toe, like a heavy object and causes an injury. This lesion makes the toenail more susceptible to fungi. It is important in both cases to take care of your toenails to avoid infection.
A bad pedicure: nail salons are a dangerous place when it comes to nail fungus. If the tools are not properly disinfected, fungi can proliferate at will. If we’re going to have a pedicure, we need to make sure the site is professional and sterilizes all the material.
Weak immune system: sometimes onychomycosis starts from the inside if our immune system is compromised. Diet, medications, or certain health conditions can weaken the immune system. If our immune system is not strong, fungi may easily take our nails and from there they can easily spread to other parts of the body.
Other people’s shoes, towels, socks, etc. as I mentioned, these kinds of fungi are very contagious and we must avoid contact with other people’s infected belongings to stay free of fungi.
How to treat nail mycosis
Nail mycosis can be treated with medicines in the form of tablets, prescribed by the dermatologist such as fluconazole or Itraconazole, or by applying a special ointment or enamel for fungi on nails such as Loceryl for example.
Another option is the use of laser for nail mycosis, which removes the fungus from mycosis through the infrared rays emitted by the laser.
How long does the treatment last for nail mycosis?
The treatment for fungi in the nails is long, because the fungus is only completely eliminated when the nail grows enough. For this reason, to cure usually takes about 6 months for fungal infection of the fingernails and 12 months for mycosis of the nails of the feet, when it is followed correctly.
Home remedies for nail fungus
Home treatment for nail fungus can be done by applying 2 to 3 drops of essential nail oil to the affected nail at least 2 times a day, as the nail has antifungal and healing action.
In addition to this, home treatment for nail fungus also includes the adoption of some care such as:
- Avoid wearing tight shoes
- Prefer cotton stockings
- Wash and dry your feet very well, even between your fingers
- Always use slippers in swimming pools or public baths
- Use your own manicure or pedicure materials and do not share them
- These care speeds up the treatment of nail mycosis and prevents a new infection
Symptoms of nail fungus
Symptoms of nail mycosis are:
- White or yellowish, thick nails that can take off from the skin
- Nail deformity
The diagnosis of fungi in the nails can be confirmed by a microscope analysis of a sample of nail residues to determine which fungus is responsible for the infection, which is essential for the dermatologist to indicate the most appropriate treatment.
10 alternative home remedies to get rid of foot fungus.
1. Apple cider vinegar:
One of the best remedies for onychomycosis is apple cider vinegar that can be used topically, internally, or both. Mix vinegar with Epsom salts in equal parts and dilute with six parts of hot water. Let warm and soak your feet up to twice a day for at least thirty minutes to kill the fungus.
Apple vinegar can also be mixed with honey and applied directly to the nail.
2. Olive leaf extract:
Another excellent option to fight these fungi is olive leaf extract. Olive leaf extract is antibacterial, antiviral and can help reduce cholesterol, among other things.
Olive leaf extract is also a powerful detoxifies, so you may experience some discomfort when you start taking the supplement for the first time. In this case, consider lowering your daily dose while your body removes most of your accumulated toxins.
3. Tea tree oil:
As an antiseptic and fungicidal remedy, tea tree oil is a great remedy for onychomycosis. First clean the affected area with alcohol and then apply 100% pure tea tree oil without diluting directly to the affected nails. After about ten minutes, we gently rub the nail. with a soft bristle brush.
We must repeat every day until a new healthy nail grows completely, then we must continue treatment for two or three more weeks to prevent it from growing again.
4. Orange essential oil:
Orange essential oil is another natural anti-fungal that can be applied daily to the toenails to cure an infection. Just apply a drop of this oil and let it work for at least an hour.
Orange oil can be too strong for people with sensitive skin. In addition, because citrus allergies are common, it is recommended to test orange oil in a healthy skin area before applying it to infected nails.
One of the most interesting remedies for nail fungus is organic corn flour. Corn naturally harbors a form of fungus that is harmless to the human body but deadly to Candida, the most common fungal parasite that causes infections in people.
In a container large enough to put the foot, put a cup of cornmeal and about two liters of water. We mix and let stand for at least an hour and then dip the infected foot (or feet) into the mixture for half an hour or more. Do it once a day until the fungus disappears.
6. Baking soda and borax:
Because fungi need an acidic environment to bloom, sodium bicarbonate a super alkaline prevents fungi in the nails from spreading by creating an uninhabitable environment for them. Borax is a natural mineral that is also a powerful fungicide.
These two combined create a remedy that can cure the nail fungus quickly. Mix equal parts of borax powder and sodium bicarbonate with enough water to form a paste. Then we put the mixture and rub it on the infected nails. Do this twice a day and for at least two weeks after the fungus disappears.
7. Coconut oil.
Caprylic acid, one of the medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil, has the ability to penetrate the durable cell wall of Candida and other fungi. Without its protective coating, the fungus cells dissolve, effectively destroying the infection. Apply a thin layer of coconut oil to infected areas and let it soak for at least 15 minutes. Coconut oil is ideal for skin health, so there is no limit to how often you can use this treatment. Just make sure you’re not allergic to coconuts before applying this product to sensitive tissues.
8. Lavender essential oil:
The anti-fungal properties of lavender oil make it an effective remedy for mild cases only. Apply a few drops of 100% pure lavender essential oil to infected nails every night and let them act while you sleep. It is best to continue topical treatments such as this for at least a few weeks after the infection goes away.
9. Oregano oil:
Another plant with anti-fungal properties is oregano. Pure oregano oil is rich in a compound called timol which has been found to be effective against a lot of pathogenic fungi, including Candida and other yeasts. Mix a few drops of 100% pure oregano oil into a teaspoon of carrier oil and apply to infected nails.
An imbalance of micro-flora in the body can also be an important cause for the growth of fungi, such as onychomycosis, to skyrocket.
Be sure to associate a good probiotic supplement with some of the remedies we’ve already seen. Healthy and healthy intestinal bacteria hinder the growth and spread of parasitic fungi and other microbes by limiting their available living space.
In addition, the bacterium lactobacillus found in most probiotic supplements is poisonous to Candida. Just make sure the supplement does not contain sugar or artificial fillings that can inadvertently feed the fungus.
5 ways to prevent fungal toenails.
While previous home remedies can help us get rid of fungus on our toenails, prevention is always the best option. Here are some things we can do to avoid having this unpleasant condition.
Cutting toenails: it is important to hold your toenails properly to protect yourself from a fungal infection. Be sure to use properly disinfected trimming tools. Cut your toenails in a straight line, not at an angle. File any sharp edge.
Wearing shoes that suit us: choosing the right shoes is essential if you want to avoid fungus on your toenails. Shoes shouldn’t touch your toenails at all. Do not put your feet in shoes that are too big, as this will cause the toenail to get into the front of the shoe causing damage. According to the American Academy of Physicians, the best shoes have a large box for feet.
Choose shoes that breathe: the more air runs in and around your feet, the better. Shoes that do not breathe keep moisture and create a favorable environment for fungi to grow.
Disinfect: we must ensure that the shower is cleaned and disinfected regularly. In addition, spray the shoes regularly with water spray and a few drops of tea tree oil.
Changing shoes: wearing the same pair of shoes two days in a row can increase the risk of fungus on your toenails. This is why it is convenient to have several pairs and rotate, so we let the shoes breathe and be very dry when we use them.
Well I hope this collection of remedies will be useful to you and if you have any questions or suggestions we read in the comments.