Nail fungal infections or onychomycosis is a condition that usually affects the toenails and sometimes the fingernails. This is caused by certain common species of fungi that may grow in the nails. These fungi may live in an environment and enter the nails through an open wound or cracks in the skin. Fungi that are naturally found in the body may also overgrow and spread due to the body’s weak immune system and other environmental factors.
Nail fungal infections may be caused by fungi, molds, and yeasts. The most common of these causes are fungi that belong to the group known as dermatophytes which also cause athlete’s foot, ringworm, and jock itch. Some habits and conditions may also make you at risk of a nail fungal infection. These include the following: walking barefoot in damp public areas like pools, having diabetes and a weakened immune system, going to a nail salon that does not sanitize their tools, sharing personal tools like nail clippers, having athlete’s foot or ringworm, and having a minor skin and nail injury.
There are many types of nail fungal infections, but the symptoms are more or less the same. These are the most common symptoms: having white, yellow, or brown spots in the nail, the nail becomes thick, brittle, and crumbly, the nail getting misshapen, the nail separates from the nail bed, a bad smell coming from the nail, and it can be painful.
Doctors often prescribe the use of topical and oral medications and also laser treatment for fungal nails. A nail fungus treatment plan depends on how severe the condition is and the type of organism that brought it. An example of topical medication is ciclopirox, which is an antifungal nail cream. Antifungal pills include terbinafine, griseofulvin, itraconazole, and fluconazole.
1All about Aveloz
Aveloz is a succulent and cactus-like plant that can grow to a height of 10 meters. It was introduced from the far continent of Africa as a garden plant. This has been naturalized in many tropical areas such as Madagascar, Amazon, and South Africa. It has a woody main trunk, but its younger branches look like many pencils, hence the name pencil tree. It is also called milk bush, among other names. Aveloz is also called “the petroleum plant” since it gives off a hydrocarbon substance which is like gasoline. It is being studied by Brazil’s national petroleum company if it could be directly used by the country’s oil refineries.
As an Antibacterial and Antifungal
Aveloz leaves, stems, and bark are known for being antibacterial and antifungal. E. coli and P. aeruginosa were observed to be sensitive to the pencil tree leaf extract. The extract from the aveloz stem and bark showed effects on P. vulgaris and K. pneumonia. The leaf extract also exhibited maximum antifungal effects on A. fumigatus. The extract’s effects on S. aureus make it a possible alternative to orthodox antibiotics. A study also evaluated different extracts from the stems of the Aveloz to assess its antimicrobial properties. The ethanolic extract from the stem exhibited inhibitory effects against B. subtilis, E. coli, Candida albicans, and P. aeruginosa. This extract was observed to inhibit the growth of all fungi tested.
In Africa, aveloz is known as an insect repellant. Its root is intended for snakebites. Its latex is used to treat syphilis ulcers and skin tumors while Aveloz seeds and latex are intended for intestinal parasites. Decoctions made from Aveloz wood are good for fighting off bacterial infections.
Aveloz has several known properties. It is purgative and strong. It helps with digestion. It is naturally anti-toxic, and it can treat several disorders.
How to Use It
Pencil trees can be used in various ways. As mentioned earlier, all the parts of this plant can be used medicinally.
For Eye Pain
Mix ash and sweet oil from Aveloz extract and let the mixture dry. You can then use the dried powder as an eyeliner. This can cure eye pain.
Mix the extract of this plant with an equal amount of mustard oil. Let it boil, and apply to the skin after cooling. This is highly effective in treating skin conditions, particularly psoriasis.
For Clearing and Melting Moles
Apply pencil tree’s milk on moles and boils which grew as skin eruptions. This can melt the moles and keep the skin clear.
Grind the leaves of Aveloz and mix them with jasmine, Indian beech, and cow urine. This may turn into a paste that can be applied to boils and ulcers.
For Intestinal Worms
Grind the root and mix it with asafoetida to make a paste. Apply this to the stomach. This can eliminate intestinal worms in children.
Dip a cotton ball in Aveloz milk and burn it. Put the burnt cotton in the painful tooth. This gets rid of the toothache.
For Muscle Swelling
Apply Aveloz milk to the swollen area. This helps dissolve the swelling and stiffness of the area.
For Ear Pain
Heat the juice from Aveloz and put two drops of it in the painful ear. This can get rid of the pain in no time.
For Tooth Extraction
Apply pencil tree milk to the loose tooth. This will help the tooth to loosen, making it easy to extract. Be careful so that the milk will not spill on the other teeth.
Heat two leaves of the Aveloz on fire and crush them to extract the juice from them. Mix a pinch of salt into the extract and give it to the patient. This can get rid of the cough effectively.
In the Philippines, Aveloz latex is used as fish poison while a variety of Aveloz species are used as criminal poison. Its sap has a strong fixative power. This can be mixed with animal hair and used for fastening the knife blades to their wooden handles. It’s the same thing with spearheads and their shafts. This can also be used as a fuel alternative. It also produces charcoal that can be used as gunpowder. Its latex can be converted into an alcohol equivalent.