Are you worried about nail split, peel, and why it turns yellow? If it does, it means you have nail fungus, also called onychomycosis. Mostly nail fungus affects toenails, but it may also attack fingernails. Onychomycosis can attack anyone, and it becomes painful for you. But no need to worry now, since this article provides a great variety of natural home remedies that help you to get rid of your nail infection, and these confidently work for you.
Nail fungus is also known as onychomycosis, and it is the condition that initiates with yellow or white spots under the tips of toenail and fingernails. Suppose this fungus becomes dangerous or reached deeper, then it may cause discoloration of nails and sometimes thickens and crumble the edges of nails. If your nail fungus is not severe, then you may not require any type of treatment and your nails will get better after doing some home remedies because self-care is better than any medicine or any medical treatment.
Factors that increase the risk of Nail Fungus
There are numerous factors that increase the risk of developing nail fungus. Some of them are discussed below:
- Sports: Yes, sometimes playing lots of games increases the chance of developing nail fungus, because long-running distance or any type of sports cause sweating in your feet and remaining in this sweaty state for prolonged period can make you prone to nail fungus.
- Athlete’s Foot:The fungus usually occurs between the toes because of sweat and tightening of shoes. Then scaly rashes appear on your toes that increase the risk of nail fungus.
- Not Changing your Socks: Often not changing your socks cause nail fungus because it sucks up the moisture and procreates the fungus.
- Damage to Nails: If your nail damages regularly due to nail biting or any other cause, it becomes a wound which can develop infection.
- Wearing tight shoes: Mostly, people wear shoes when going to college, university, or office because it is considered a sign of formal get-up, but long duration of wearing shoes increases the risk of nail fungus. Sandals are a better option to wear if allowed to the places of your work and institute.
- Humid Environment: Humid environment makes the growth of nail fungus easy on both: toenails and fingernails.
- Artificial Nails: Sometimes, artificial things become harmful for you, because artificial nails become the cause of the allergic reaction and make your nails vulnerable.
12 natural ways to heal your nail fungus at home
Typical treatment for nail fungus involves numbers of antifungal ointments, creams, and sometimes intake of oral medications. Still, rarely oral medication give side-effects, especially if someone is pregnant or breastfeeding. Laser treatment is also preferred for nail fungus, but not everyone can afford this because it is too expensive, and you’re never sure if it’ll be successful or not.
But thankfully, here are several natural remedies that are proved beneficial to heal nail fungus. These remedies will work best if you trim your nails before trying any of them.
1. Tea Tree oil
Tea tree is an essential oil that is derived from the Australian tree, and it may be used as an antiseptic. This is a strong anti-fungal and antibacterial oil that proves to be a very effective remedy to treat nail fungus, and it gives similar results as clotrimazole medication, which is considered as conventional fungal medication.
- Pat the tea tree oil on the infected area with the help of cotton balls and leave it for 15-20 minutes.
- After 15-20 minutes, wipe it off with a paper towel or tissue paper.
- Use this oil 3-4 times per day.
Remember that tea tree oil can damage your skin area at some of its extent. It is necessary that before using this oil, you should dilute tea tree oil with any other oil (such as coconut oil, olive oil, and grapefruit oil) at a ratio of 1:1.
Caution: Like other carrier oils, please don’t use tea tree oil for internal use.
It is an essential herb that is grown all over the world, and is considered a topical remedy for nail fungus. Fresh garlic consists of active compounds (like ajoene and allicin). These active compounds have antibacterial and antifungal properties.
- Crush or chop some fresh garlic
- Mix it with a small amount of oil carrier (like olive oil). You can also mix crushed garlic with vinegar
- Apply this mixture on your infected fungal nails
- Apply a bandage to hold it in the correct place
- Leave it for 30 minutes
- Rinse it with clean water
Caution: Sometimes, garlic proves to be an irritating agent for people who have sensitive skin. Before using this remedy on your affected area you can apply the garlic mixture on a small area of your body and leave it for 2 hours to check any allergic reactions. You can use this remedy if no reaction occurs.
3. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is a versatile oil that is mostly used in aromatherapy, and it is believed that this oil is also used to treat allergies, fungal infections, anxiety, and depression. Lavender oil is used to treat nail fungus, and it helps to reduce the inflammation that surrounds your nail. But keep in mind if you want to use this oil, then buy pure essential oil and not the one that consists only the lavender fragrance.
- Pat a few drops of lavender oil on your infected nails by the help of cotton ball
- Leave it for 15-20 minutes
- Wipe it off with the help of a tissue paper or paper towel
- Use this oil 3-4 times a day to get better results
Caution: Sometimes, lavender oil proves to be irritating on the skin. You can dilute the lavender oil with any carrier oil to prevent irritation. But still, if you have any allergy or irritation, then skip this remedy and try another beneficial remedy that doesn’t harm your skin. However, lavender oil and tea-tree oil are used as a mixture to get benefits of both remedies.
4. Oregano Oil
Oregano belongs to the mint family, and it is a flowering plant, and it is considered as a perennial herb. Oregano oil showed antibacterial and antifungal properties, and this is very strong oil. Mostly it irritates the skins who have sensitive types of skin.
- Mix oregano oil with any carrier oil with a ratio of 1:6 (one part oregano and six-part of any oil)
- Apply this diluted mixture on your affected nails
- Leave it for at least 10-15 minutes
- Remove this mixture with a cotton ball or paper towel
- You can use this remedy 3-4 times a day to get better results
Caution: Don’t use this oil internally as it is a potent oil. If you get allergen to this oil then apply this oil on a small area to see any irritation. If nothing happens, you can use apply it on the affected area.
5. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt is a chemical compound, also known as magnesium sulfate. The formula of Epsom salt is MgSO4 that consists of magnesium Mg+2 and sulfate SO-4. Epsom salt is used to treat the sores, inflammation, and also release stress.
- Take one cup of Epsom salt and mix it with warm water
- Soak your feet for at least 15-20 minutes
Caution: It’s important to know what kind of infection you have, because some infections (like staph infection) become worse due to hot water and salt.
6. Baking Soda
Baking soda is commonly known as sodium bicarbonate having the formula of NaHCO3. Baking soda is a chemical compound. It is a salt that consists of sodium (cation) and bicarbonate (anion). Sodium bicarbonate or baking soda has antibacterial properties, and frequently, it is used as deodorants, acne treatment, and mouthwashes. It is also used to dry the infections and inhibit the growth of germs.
- Take a small amount of baking soda and mix it with water to make a paste
- Apply it on your nail fungus
- Leaves it for 10-15 minutes
Extra Tip: You can also use baking soda with foot soak (ingredients that are added in warm water for soaking of feet) to get better results.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is manufactured by the addition of yeast to apple juice. By drinking apple cider vinegar you can boost your health. Apple cider vinegar is also used as hair masks and for skin treatment, and helps you get rid of nail fungus because it has antifungal and antibacterial properties.
- Take a foot bath with water
- Add apple cider vinegar then soak foot in your bath at least for half an hour
- Dry your foot with the help of a paper towel
Make a routine to soak your feet with water and apple cider vinegar to get better results and after a few weeks all the sign of fungus will disappear.
8. Olive leaf oil
Extract of olive leaf consists high concentration of therapeutic substances, also found in fruits. Olive leaf oil also helps to boost the immune system and fight against the infection because it has antifungal properties. Olive leaf oil is used both topically and orally.
- Better treatment for getting rid of nail fungus is to take capsules two times per day
- For better instructions, you can read the direction mentioned on the bottle
Caution: Intake of olive leaf oil extract is beneficial for nail fungus, but before oral intake, you should ask your doctor.
9. Lemon juice
Lemon belongs to the family Rutaceae, native to South Asia. Lemon is a round shaped fruit that has ability to reduce the fungal growth. It is beneficial to heal nail fungus because it has antifungal and antiseptic properties. Citric acid helps to stop the growth of fungus and also stops it from spreading.
- Squeeze a lemon to get some fresh lemon juice
- Apply the juice on the infected area of nails
- Leave it for 3 hours
- Rinse it with clean water
- Apply the lemon juice 2-3 times a day
Extra Tip: Another remedy for nail fungus is lemon rubbing. Take lemon juice and olive oil and mix them well, then rub or massage this on your affected nails because this remedy helps you soften the hardened nails.
10. Coconut Oil
Everyone knows about the antifungal property of coconut oil because it has a high concentration of chain fatty acids. Coconut oil can be used for skin and hair products. If you are worried about its originality, then you can make your oil at home.
- Wash the infected area with clean water
- Dry it with a paper towel or tissue paper
- Apply coconut oil to the nail fungus and their surrounding areas. Apply the oil 2-3 times per day to get rid of nail fungus
Caution: Do not use normal commercial oils (that is refined, deodorized, and high quality of coconut oil) to get better results.
Cinnamon is a spice that is frequently used as a home remedy to treat various health problems. The cinnamon is an effective ingredient to heal the nail fungus because it also has antibacterial and antifungal properties.
- Take some sticks of cinnamon and boil them for 5-10 minutes in water
- Leave the stick of cinnamon in water for soaking purpose for 40-50 minutes and cool the mixture.
- After cooling the mixture, put it in a foot bath, then put your foot in this bathtub and leave it for 15-20 minutes.
Extra Tip: You can also buy cinnamon oil and apply it on your affected area. This cinnamon oil works the same as tea tree oil, and you can directly use it to your infected area with the help of a cotton ball.
12. Vapor Rub
Vapor rub is part of the Vicks brand. It is a topical ointment and is used for colds, stuffy nose, and chest pain. When no other home remedy works to heal or treat the nail fungus, then vapor rub is the best option to go for. Vapor rub helps to kill the fungus and also gives you a cooling effect.
- Take a small amount of water and rub it on your hand or cotton ball
- Apply this rub generously to nails that are affected and its surrounding area. You can use this vapor rub every night before going to bed.
Caution: Generally, there are numbers of vapor rub brands available in medical stores, and you can easily take any brand to kill the nail fungus. But if you have sensitive skin, then you should ask your doctor before using it.
Before you leave!
If you have a habit of nail biting so stop worrying about your nail fungus. There is a good news for you that by doing some natural home remedies you can easily get rid of nail fungus. Make sure to check if any reaction occurs before applying anything on the entire area of your skin or nails. You should apply it to a smaller area to check the result. If no infection, allergy, or itching occur due to the implication of home remedies then you can apply it on the whole infected area. To get better results you can apply these natural home remedies 3-4 times per day or as the above-mentioned directions along with their caution. If you have a sensitive skin then you should consult with your doctor before using anything on your skin.
A student of Respiratory Therapist from Dow university of health sciences. She trying to find scientific knowledge and theory to practical problems Related to respiratory care modalities including oxygen and aerosol therapy ,breathing problems and humidity And focusing cardiopulmonary diseases .just to help students to understand in easier way and for acknowledging common people.