Toenail fungal infection is a type of infection that is caused by a fungus that gets through the cracks or cuts in the skin. This infection can change the color of the nail and make it thicker. This can also cause pain in the area when the infection becomes severe. Different kinds of fungi and at times even yeast can infect different areas of the nail. When left untreated, toenail fungal infection may spread from one toenail to other nails, the skin, and other parts of the body.
Symptoms of Toenail Fungal Infections
Infected nails often appear thicker than the usual nails. They can be oddly shaped and warped as well. Nails that are infected with fungus may be yellow or they may have white dots on the nail, and the dot gets bigger over time. As the fungus grows underneath your nail, it can cause the nail to loosen and set off the nail bed. The fungus may also spread to the skin that surrounds the nail.
People Who Are More Prone
It is possible for men to get infected more than women. The older you become, the more vulnerable you are to the fungus. People who suffer from diabetes, a weak immune system, athlete’s foot, those who smoke, and those whose family members have experienced being infected. If you spend more time in the water or you have an injured toenail, you have greater chances of incurring a toenail infection.
Getting a Diagnosis
You have to get your nail checked by a doctor since toenail fungal infections can look similar to other medical conditions like psoriasis. In some cases, it is necessary to look for a foot specialist or podiatrist. It is possible for them to scrape off the infected area send it as a sample to a lab to determine the cause of the problem.
Treating Toenail Fungal Infections
The best way to treat a toenail infection is to treat it based on the fungus that causes it and its level of severity. The doctor can try one option or combination therapy. The treatment options include antifungal pills, topical cream or lotion that can be applied to the nail, a nail lacquer, and laser treatment that can get rid of the damaged part of the skin or nail. When the infection is too severe, the nail may have to be removed totally for a fresh new uninfected nail to grow.
Taking Care of One’s Toes
You can use soap and warm water to wash your feet and dry them well including the spaces between toes. It’s good to trim your toenails straight across. This will make them shorter than your toe ends. Always sanitize the tools you are using. Make sure that the tools used in your favorite salon are sanitized too. When you have nail discoloration, don’t cover the discolored part with nail polish. Be mindful of your footwear. Make sure that your socks wick off moisture and your shoes fit your feet well. These must also be made of highly breathable materials such as leather, canvas, and mesh. Wear appropriate footwear when you go to public areas like swimming pools, shower rooms, and gyms. These places are the favorite breeding ground of fungi since they are warm and moist. Make it a habit to check your nailbeds and the skin that surrounds your toenails once a month. Look out for any changes in color and texture and if there are any cuts or injuries.
Treating Toenail Fungal Infections at Home
Some people use homegrown remedies for their toenail infections. Some also buy over-the-counter nail fungus treatment to be applied at home. A good example of a product that can be used for getting rid of nail fungal infection is alum powder. Alum powder goes with acupuncture as among the Chinese traditional treatments.
Acupuncture is first applied to figure out the internal source of fungus infection. The soaking technique is then applied to the affected area. Alum crystals are grounded into powder form and mixed with water. The infected foot will then be soaked into this solution. Put 3 tablespoons of alum powder in a liter of water. Soak your foot for 15 to 20 minutes on a daily basis. Doing this will immediately eliminate the smell and excessive sweating of the feet.
There are many kinds of alum and the type of alum used in India which is also known as fitkari has numerous uses and health benefits. Here are some of them.
3Alum can be used to get rid of wrinkles.
When wrinkles start to appear on the face, you can massage your face with alum water and massage your face with it every night. Doing so will reduce wrinkles. Just dip a large piece of cloth into the alum water and use this to clean your face.