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REMEDIES TO GET RID OF NAIL FUNGUS

Risk Of Nail Fungus

Nail fungus can attack any one of us, but there’s no need to worry because there are a number of effective natural remedies out there. This condition normally affects toenails, but fingernails can also become infected. The infected nails often change color, becoming yellow, green, or black. They can also become painful. If left untreated, the fungus may gradually inflict serious damage to the nails, and eventually, have to be removed by a physician.

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 enoughSocks can absorb moisture and create a breeding ground for fungus.
  • Athlete’s 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 regularlyWounds are especially prone to infection.
  • Going barefoot in communal areas. In places such as locker rooms and around swimming pools, it’s better to wear flip-flops.
  • Using artificial nails.They can cause an allergic reaction or wear down the nails, making them more vulnerable.

Toenail Fungus and Diabetes

Toenail fungus is about twice as common in people with diabetes—in fact, one in three people with diabetes have had it. Because diabetes causes nerve damage in the feet, a person may not notice the symptoms of toenail fungus and accidentally cause further damage or infection. Gone untreated, toenail fungus increases the risk of amputation.

Nail Fungus and Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails are plastic nails that are applied over your natural nails. While they are not particularly dangerous, frequent application of these chemicals can cause an allergic reaction or damage your nails. This increases the risk of a fungal infection. It can be difficult to notice as the acrylic nails will cover the evidence, allowing the fungus to thrive in a moist and dark place.

If you are prone to fungal infection, it may be best to avoid false nails in general.

How to Heal Nail Fungus at Home

Conventional treatments for nail fungus involve various antifungal creams, ointments, and oral medications. Oral antifungal medications can have significant side-effects. Be sure not to take them if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Laser treatment can be performed to remove nail fungus, but it’s expensive, and there are doubts as to whether it’s really effective. It’s not normally covered by insurance.

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Thankfully, there are also a number of useful natural remedies that can solve the problem. Before using any of these remedies, trim your nails so that the remedy has the best chance of working.

10 Natural Remedies

  1. Coconut oil
  2. Tea tree oil
  3. Lavender oil
  4. Apple cider vinegar
  5. Garlic
  6. Lemon juice
  7. Oregano oil
  8. Epsom salt
  9. Baking soda
  10. Olive leaf extract

1. Oregano Oil

Oregano (Origanum vulgare) is a common herb, also known as wild marjoram. The essential oil produced by this plant has notable antifungal properties. The oil is very strong, and usually irritates the skin if used as-is. Dilute it with a carrier oil, such as olive oil, before use.

Instructions

Mix one part oregano oil with at least six parts carrier oil. Apply the mixture to the affected nails, leave for at least fifteen minutes, and then rub it off with a paper towel. Repeat three times a day.

Warning: Never take oregano oil internally. (Though the herb itself is perfectly safe to eat, and is used in many Italian recipes.)

2. Olive Leaf Oil

Olive leaf oil contains oleuropein, which is both antifungal and antimicrobial. It is also immune-boosting and helps your body fight off infections. It can be taken both orally and topically. Taking it orally is less messy and helps you heal from within.

Instructions

Follow the directions on the bottle.

Warning: Talk to your doctor before taking olive leaf extract orally.

3. Epsom Salt

When mixed with warm water, Epsom salt is used to treat sore muscles, reduce inflammation, and ease stress. And when taken orally, it acts as a diuretic. Though Epsom salt will not cure toe fungus, it can help draw moisture out from the affected area.

Instructions

Mix one cup of Epsom salt with two quarts of warm water. Soak feet for 10 to 20 minutes.

Warning: Some infections, such as staph infections, worsen from hot water or salt. Be sure to confirm your particular infection.

 4. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar (or ACV) is made by adding yeast to apple juice—thus turning the juice into alcohol via fermentation. It has long been used for nail fungus due to its antibacterial and antifungal effects. It is also used in hair masks and skin treatments.

Instructions

Make up a foot bath, using one part apple cider vinegar to two parts water. Soak your feet in the bath for about 30 minutes, then dry your feet thoroughly with paper towels. Carry out this routine once a day. Continue for a week or so after all visible signs of the fungus have gone.

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 5. Garlic

Garlic is another great topical remedy for nail fungus. Freshly-crushed garlic contains active compounds, such as allicin and ajoene, which have significant antifungal and antibacterial properties.

Instructions

Crush some garlic and mix it with a little carrier, such as olive oil or vinegar. Smear the mixture onto the affected nail. It is best to put a bandage around the garlic to hold it in place. Leave for at least 30 minutes, then rinse clean.

Note: Some people find garlic irritating to their skin, so use this remedy with caution at first.

6. Lemon Juice

Lemon juice tends to inhibit fungal growth, making it a useful remedy for nail fungus. It is both an antiseptic and antifungal. The citric acid in the juice is what helps stop the fungus from spreading further.

Instructions

Squeeze some lemons to get the fresh juice, and then apply it to the affected nails. Rinse off after about half an hour. Repeat two to three times a day.

7. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil contains powerful antifungal properties due to its high concentration of medium-chain fatty acids. It is also used in a variety of skin and hair products. Use high-quality virgin coconut oil, not the normal commercial oils (Refined, Bleached, and Deodorized or “RBD”). You can even make your own if you’re worried about the quality.

Instructions

First, wash and dry the affected area. Apply the coconut oil to the nails as well as the surrounding skin. Repeat three times a day.

8. Lavender Oil

Lavender oil has long been valued for its antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. Many people use it to combat fungal nail infections and reduce inflammation surrounding the nail. When using lavender oil topically, be sure to buy the pure essential oil, not merely oil which contains lavender fragrance.

Instructions

Dab a few drops of the oil on the affected areas with a clean cotton ball, leave for at least fifteen minutes, and then wipe off with a paper towel. Repeat three times a day.

Warning: Some people find that lavender oil irritates their skin. If this happens to you, dilute at least three to one with a carrier oil, such as olive oil. If you still have irritation, try another remedy. Lavender oil is sometimes combined with tea tree oil, in order to get the effects of both remedies.

9. Baking Soda

Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) has antibacterial properties and is often used in deodorant, mouthwash, and acne treatments. Like Epsom salt, it can be used to dry out an infection and limit growth. It can also minimize odor, one of the more rare symptoms of nail fungus.

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Instructions

Create a paste by combining baking soda with a small amount of water. Apply and let it sit for 10 minutes before rinsing it off.

Tip: You can also add some baking soda to a foot soak for an extra kick.

10. Tea Tree Oil

The tea tree, Melaleuca alternifolia, is found in Australia. It is not the same species as the bush that produces the beverage tea, which is Camellia sinensis. Tea tree oil has strong antifungal and antibacterial effects, making it an effective alternative remedy for nail fungus.

American researchers, writing in the Journal of Family Practice in 1994, showed that tea tree oil was an effective remedy for toenail fungus, producing similar results to the conventional fungal medication Clotrimazole.

Both remedies were applied to the nails in a “double-blind” trial (neither the patients nor the physicians treating them knew who was given which).

Instructions

Dab tea tree oil on the affected area with a cotton ball, leave for fifteen minutes, and then wipe it off with a paper towel. Tea tree oil can sting and may damage the skin to some extent. This is why it’s important to dilute the tea tree oil with a carrier oil, such as olive or grapefruit oil before use. Dilute in a one to one ratio. Treat three times a day.

Warning: Like other essential oils, never take this oil internally!

Toenail Fungus and Diabetes

Toenail fungus is about twice as common in people with diabetes—in fact, one in three people with diabetes have had it. Because diabetes causes nerve damage in the feet, a person may not notice the symptoms of toenail fungus and accidentally cause further damage or infection. Gone untreated, toenail fungus increases the risk of amputation.

Nail Fungus and Acrylic Nails

Acrylic nails are plastic nails that are applied over your natural nails. While they are not particularly dangerous, frequent application of these chemicals can cause an allergic reaction or damage your nails. This increases the risk of a fungal infection. It can be difficult to notice as the acrylic nails will cover the evidence, allowing the fungus to thrive in a moist and dark place.

If you are prone to fungal infection, it may be best to avoid false nails in general.

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