Nail fungus can cause a lot of problems not only for an infected person, but also for their loved ones. This disease is transmitted both through personal contact and in general household conditions. This fact means only one thing: the fungus must be treated without fail, and the measures must be comprehensive: if the problem arose on the nails, it is also present on the skin of the legs. Also, local remedies should be combined with oral medications. This is the only way to defeat the disease at home.
Preparation and Precautions
Nail fungus (onychomycosis) is a disease caused by fungi: dermatophytes, microsporia, etc. , so it is very important to consult a doctor at the first symptoms. After the examination, the doctor may prescribe additional tests to confirm the diagnosis and select an effective therapy. If you also want to use home remedies, you should discuss this with your doctor. Consultation with a specialist will allow you to treat the problem effectively and safely.
It is important to use the medicines according to the instructions and recommendations of the doctor, since some medicines can give a negative result when they come into contact with the skin.
If you or someone in the family has nail fungus, special attention should be paid to hygiene to avoid infecting those who are still healthy.
Why does the fungus appear and its types?
The spores of the fungus are microscopic and live where a person lives. Some 70, 000 fungi are known, but the disease-causing ones are the most dangerous.
How does it turn out that one person is healthy, and the other "caught" the fungus? The following reasons can contribute to this:
- Wounds on the legs, abrasions, calluses.
- Violation of personal hygiene.
- Decreased body defenses.
- Excessive foot sweating (hyperhidrosis).
The dermatologist can only determine the type of fungus that hit the nail plate after passing the tests. Sometimes it is possible to understand by visual inspection which species caused the disease:
- Dermatophytes. The lesion appears as yellowish spots or streaks. The progressive stage is characterized by the acquisition of a brighter shade and the defeat of the entire plaque.
- Yeast. They affect the color and structure of the nail folds, causing inflammation and suppuration.
- Moldy. They do not penetrate very deeply and appear as dark, black spots.
It is worth noting that the stronger the lesion, the more pronounced the symptoms and signs of the fungus.
Symptoms and signs of damage
The success of treatment directly depends on the correct and timely diagnosis. If you are attentive to yourself, then be sure to notice the manifestations of the fungus on the toenails. The following symptoms and signs should alert:
- Change the color of the plate. The color can indicate the type of fungus that caused the disease. You may notice yellow, gray, black, green, and blue spots or streaks on your nails.
- Change in the density of the nail. If you see thinning or, conversely, thickening of the nails, you should visit a doctor.
- Itching and burning. They occur systematically and cause discomfort.
- Violation of the integrity of the board. The nail can crack. Also, dry skin on the heels indicates a fungal infection.
Unpleasant sensations arise due to the effects of fungal toxins on the skin and nails, so the sooner you consult a doctor and start treatment, the sooner a complete recovery will come. If the fungus is not treated, you can lose the nail completely or several nail plates. Also, toxins poison the body and can lead to eczema.
Effective folk methods of struggle.
Folk methods will help get rid of the fungus, especially at the initial stage. I present to you the most common recipes to combat the disease.
It is used for bathrooms. Preparation for the procedure is simple: take 5 liters of water at a temperature of 50 degrees, add 9% acetic acid and put the feet in a container. The procedure lasts 15 minutes, after which the feet are dried and cotton socks are put on.
First, the feet are steamed in a soda bath, after which damaged areas of the nail plate are removed. Next, a cotton swab with hydrogen peroxide is applied to the nail and covered with polyethylene. Such a compress should stay for an hour. The procedure is carried out twice a day.
Nail platinum is smeared with tincture of iodine 2 times a day. Baths can also be made by adding 3 liters of water and 2 teaspoons of iodine.
Propolis has an antifungal effect on the skin of the legs and nail plates both when using tinctures, and as part of ointments and baths. Add a tablespoon of propolis to a container of water. After the procedure, you can apply the remedy for half an hour on the focus of the disease.
Potassium permanganate and vinegar
Baths with potassium permanganate and vinegar also do an excellent job with the fungus. To prepare the product, add a liter of table vinegar and a little potassium permanganate to 3 liters of water. The course of treatment is 7 days.
Apply some oil on your wrist to test for allergies. If after 12 hours no strange signs appear, you can use a remedy to combat the fungus. The most effective option is tea tree oil. 5 drops of oil are needed per liter of liquid. And the extract itself is applied to the nail surface after the cleaning procedure.
- Sage and mint. It can be taken orally as a tea or used in baths. The infusion is drunk throughout the day, and the bath is done before going to bed.
- Calamus root. For 250 ml of water take 15 g of chopped root. The decoction helps fight a variety of infections. Drink it for a month.
- Japanese sophora. It has established itself as a tool that effectively improves immunity, helps to normalize the functioning of internal organs. To prepare the tincture, take 0. 5 vodka and add 50 g of sophora fruit. Take a teaspoon before meals. Course - 2 months.
- Oak bark. It has a detrimental effect on mold and helps to get rid of the fungus. Baths are prepared as follows: combine 1 liter of liquid with 5 tbsp. tablespoons of bark and boil for 20 minutes. Use it for baths when the temperature of the broth reaches 40 degrees. The duration of the procedure is 20 minutes.
It is sold in the form of an ointment. You can buy a 10% or 30% remedy to achieve the effect. It is necessary to use it after water procedures before going to bed. The affected nail is covered with ointment.
A small piece is applied to the affected nail and fixed with a bandage. In the morning, the bandage is removed, the nails are washed with warm water, the damaged areas are cut, and the fingers are treated with hydrogen peroxide.
Compresses and tinctures
- Garlic. To treat toenail fungus, you can use the gruel of the plant. You need to cook it every night and apply it for 40 minutes.
- Rowan leaves. Grind and apply overnight.
- Thyme. The tincture is prepared from the dried plant. It will take 100 g of thyme and 2 liters of water. You need to steam your legs every day until recovery occurs.
- Lilac. The tincture will also help to kill the fungus. For 100 ml of alcohol, 10 g of lilac is required. The affected areas are lubricated until the problem completely disappears.
Pharmaceutical preparations and creams
When the symptoms of the fungus appear, topical treatment should be started as soon as possible. For this, pharmacy creams, varnishes, drops will go.
Tablets will also help to achieve maximum effectiveness in the fight against the disease. They are combined with external preparations. In the pharmacy, you can buy products of various prices and effectiveness.
Removal of affected nails
Means are also used to remove affected nails, but already in a critical condition.
- Chemical. Performed in a dermatology office. The duration of the procedure is 15 minutes. The doctor removes the stratum corneum with a special nail file and a scalpel. Then the doctor treats the entire surface of the foot and nails with an antiseptic, after which he applies an ointment and paste. A sterile material is applied on top, the affected fingers are bandaged. After 4 days, these areas are disinfected with an antiseptic and treated with an antifungal agent.
- Mechanic. A mycologist or dermatologist removes the affected nails with a special device. Before and after the procedure, the feet are treated with an antiseptic solution.
- Surgical. It is considered obsolete in medical practice. The manipulation is performed by the surgeon. The patient receives local anesthesia with lidocaine solution. After removal, the wound is treated with hydrogen peroxide, an antiseptic ointment is applied, a sterile bandage is applied, and then fixed with a bandage. At night, the fingers should be kept in a saline solution. The bandaging is done in a clinic.
What is the best way to treat advanced foot fungus?
One of the modern methods of getting rid of foot and nail fungus is laser therapy treatment. This technique is used in cases where traditional topical treatment and treatment with oral preparations have failed. The advantages of this procedure are very impressive:
- no side effects;
But laser fungus removal also has contraindications:
- The presence of acute inflammatory processes.
- Violation in the functioning of internal organs.
- Pregnancy and lactation.
- The presence of skin diseases.
- Oncological diseases.
- Chemical peel.
Preparation for laser exposure is carried out as follows: steam the damaged nail and cut as much as possible. Get tested beforehand. The duration of treatment is about 6 procedures.
Features of the treatment of fungus during pregnancy
Treatment of the fungus during the period of bearing a child has its own characteristics. It is necessary to take into account the fact that pregnancy imposes a number of restrictions on the expectant mother, therefore, when eliminating the problem, only topical preparations are used.
The use of therapeutic varnishes is recommended. First of all, the expectant mother should consult a doctor to clarify the diagnosis and receive recommendations for the next treatment.
If a pregnant woman has suffered from a fungus before, she should carry out prophylaxis to avoid an exacerbation of the disease during this crucial period.
Opinions and reviews of doctors about home treatment.
Toenail fungus is a medical problem and should be treated in conjunction with a qualified professional. It is important to consult a doctor in a timely manner to clarify the diagnosis, which also focuses on precautions when visiting public baths and saunas, swimming pools, showers in hotels. It is these places that often become a source of infection.
Self-diagnosis followed by self-treatment, according to experts, can aggravate the situation, especially considering that some fungi are resistant to certain drugs. Only proper therapy will ensure a speedy recovery and a long-lasting result.
Doctors focus the attention of expectant patients on a mandatory visit to a specialist before the pregnant woman begins to use folk remedies and buy medicines at the pharmacy.
Prevention of the appearance of the fungus
Avoiding the appearance of nail fungus is only possible with systematic prevention. The following measures will help to achieve good results:
- Wash your feet with soap every day.
- Apply antiseptics in the form of a spray or talc.
- Dry wet shoes well.
- If you visit public toilets, swimming pools, take personal hygiene items with you, change your shoes.
- Periodically treat the manicure set with an antiseptic.
Following these simple guidelines will help protect you against foot and nail fungus.
Your health depends entirely on your personal relationship with your body. If you've had a fungus before or are experiencing unusual symptoms, see a doctor to confirm the diagnosis or refute it.
Pay close attention to the appearance of itching on the feet, peeling, changes in the structure and color of the nail plates, the appearance of spots or stripes. This will not only identify the disease, but also treat it effectively. But the advanced stages of the fungus not only bring additional discomfort, but also have a negative impact on the health of the whole organism. In addition, there is an aesthetic side - the affected nails eventually fade, exfoliate, and an unpleasant smell comes from the legs.