Nail fungal infection or onychomycosis is an infection of the nail caused by microscopic organisms caused by fungi. It causes discoloration and thickening of the nail. It can either affect the fingernails or the toenails but most commonly affects the toenail.
Individuals at risk of a nail fungal infection include:
- old people
- people with a suppressed immune system
- people who sweat heavily
- people who swim in a public swimming pool
- people with a history of athlete’s foot
- people who walk barefooted in wet or damp areas
- people who use artificial nails
- people who wear tight cover shoes such as boots and tennis shoes for an extended period of time
- people with a nail injury
- Diabetic patients
5 Home Remedies for Nail Fungus
Various antifungal creams, ointments, and oral antifungal drugs are conventionally used for the treatment of nail fungal infection and maybe prescribed by your doctor. However, these drugs may cause serious side effects that can discourage one from taking them. The is the reason why home remedies are used especially in the treatment of mild to moderate infection.
Here are 5 of the popular natural home treatment options that can be used to treat nail fungus. It is important that the nail are trimmed and kept short when applying any of these natural methods to increase the chances of it working.
1. Tee Tree Oil
The oil from the Tee Tree, Melaleuca alternifolia found in Australia, has been shown to have some antifungal properties. Small-scale clinical research show that tee tree oil can be helpful against toenail fungus, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative HealthTrusted Source.
Apply tea tree oil with a cotton ball to the affected region, wait fifteen minutes, and then wipe it away with a paper towel. Tea tree oil has a stinging sensation and can cause skin irritation. This is why, before using, tea tree oil should be diluted with a carrier oil such as olive or grapefruit oil. In a one-to-one ratio, dilute. Three times a day is recommended.
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has been in a variety of beauty products, especially for the skin and hair. It has also been shown to be effective against nail fungus. This is attributed to its high concentration of medium-chain fatty acids.
Apply high-quality virgin coconut oil to the affected area and surrounding skin three times daily. Make sure the area is clean and dry before application.
The antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties of garlic is attributed to the active compounds, such as allicin and ajoene present.
Treat nail fungus by placing freshly chopped or crushed garlic cloves on the affected area for 30 minutes daily.
4. Apple Cidar Vinegar
Vinegar is another natural option that can be used to treat nail fungus. It has antibacterial and aantifungal properties and has also been used in hair masks and skin treatments.
Soak the affected foot in one part vinegar to two parts warm water for about 30 minutes daily then dry your feet thoroughly with paper towels.
5. Oregano Oil
Thymol is an active substance in oregano oil with antifungal properties. The oil is irritating to the skin and needs to be diluted with olive oil before use.
Apply the mixture of oregano oil and olive oil (one part oregano oil with six parts of olive oil) to the affected area for 15 minutes and then clean with paper towels. apply three times daily.
Other home treatment options include:
- Olive Leaf Extract
- Listerine Mouthwash
- Ozonised Oils
- Lavender Oil
- Lemon Juice
When To See The Doctor
See the doctor if symptoms do not improve after self-care procedures. It is also important to see the doctor if you have a medical history of chronic diseases like diabetes, HIV or any other diseases that suppress the immune system.