A nail fungal infection occurs as a result of a fungal attack on the toenail, fingernail, and even the nail bed. Fungi may attack the nail through small cuts in the surrounding skin or a crack in the nail and even in that space between the nail and nail bed. It wouldn’t cause a problem if you are in the pink of health.
Causes and Risk Factors
The scientific name for a nail fungal infection is onychomycosis. This condition is primarily caused by dermatophytes, which are the same fungi that cause athlete’s foot, ringworm, and jock itch. Toenail fungal infections are the most challenging to treat because it is difficult for treatment to penetrate the nail.
Several factors are known to increase the risk of nail fungal infection. The most prevalent of these is being of advanced age. People who are older than 60 are 20 times more susceptible to nail fungus than people who are younger than 19 years old. Other risk factors include diabetes, a weakened immune system, a blood circulation problem, and others.
Nail fungal infections are quite contagious. It can be contacted by a person who suffers from it. Fungus may also be contacted from an infected surface. This is why walking barefoot in damp public areas like swimming pools, locker rooms, and shower rooms makes you more susceptible to the infection. The same thing happens when you share personal effects like nail clippers and towels.
You can say that you have nail fungus when your nail starts to show some changes such as the following: nail discoloration, the nail becoming tender and brittle, white or yellow streaks all over the nail, the nail may become hard or too soft which makes it hard to trim, etc.
The doctor normally prescribes a nail fungus treatment based on cause and severity. It is usual for doctors to prescribe an oral antifungal. Another popular medication is a topical antifungal that can be applied directly to the nail.
1All about Baheda
Baheda (scientific name Terminalia bellirica) is also called Bahera and Bibhitaki. It is a large tree that is commonly found in deciduous forests around South and Southeast Asia. This can also be found in the plains of Asia and most commonly as a single tree planted on the farm borders.
This tree has a huge significance in various traditional systems of medicine such as Ayurveda, Unani, and Chinese medicine. This is mainly because of its properties that can naturally cure several health conditions. The baheda fruit is highly popular in India since it is made into a main component of the Ayurvedic medicine Triphala.
All the parts of this plant are used in Ayurveda mainly because of their therapeutic value, particularly the dried fruit. It is one of the main components of the triphala powder, a potent Ayurvedic medicine that treats constipation, the common cold, and pharyngitis. Baheda is sour and bitter and it also has hot potency.
Whether in dry or ripe form, baheda is known to contain essential vitamins such as proteins, and vitamin C, and minerals such as selenium, iron, manganese, copper, and potassium. It also possesses chemical constituents such as the following: ellagic acid, gallic acid, tannic acid, galactose, glucose, rhamnose, fructose, β-sitosterol, oxalic acid, chebulagic acid, phyllemblin, and others. Baheda has shown potent antimicrobial, antidiarrheal, antispasmodic, antihypertensive, antitussive, antipyretic, anti-asthmatic, antioxidant, anti-cancer, hepatoprotective, and anti-hypertensive properties. This helps alleviate several health conditions like mouth ulcers, skin rashes, infertility, indigestion, obesity, respiratory disorders, cough, headache, insomnia, indigestion, constipation, and hair problems.
As An Antimicrobial
Baheda has been known in folk medicine as a popular remedy for infections. Several studies have shown that this plant has a potential antimicrobial activity that may inhibit the growth of certain harmful microorganisms. This antimicrobial property of baheda is attributed to the presence of secondary metabolites such as flavonoids, phenols, alkaloids, and other compounds. The leaf and stem extracts from this plant are known for their antimicrobial activity against Gram-negative bacteria.
Other Health Benefits
Some of the most significant health benefits of using baheda are as follows:
Baheda is a highly effective herb for obese people to use when losing weight. It possesses an astringent taste that may shrink fat tissues. This also helps the digestive system and gives way to tissue dryness. The high amount of nutrients found in baheda enables it to provide strength without adding fats to the body.
It improves weight loss by getting rid of the body’s excessive fats. Its fruit can also enhance metabolism and prevent the accumulation of fat in the body. With regular consumption of baheda retains one’s appetite but combining baheda with other herbs makes it a good weight loss aid.
As an Antidepressant
Depression is a mood disorder that has serious effects on health and quality of life in general. Several drugs are available for this condition, but they are not without side effects. This is why it is recommended that you look for natural product alternatives. Baheda is an excellent plant that can help with this condition. Several studies have proven that the aqueous and ethanolic extracts from baheda are antidepressant-like effects when administered to mice.
Metabolic Syndrome Prevention
Metabolic syndrome includes the following symptoms increased blood sugar, blood pressure levels, and obesity. This may lead to diabetes and heart diseases. According to research, baheda has shown medicinal properties that can help a lot in treating metabolic syndrome prevention. A hot water extract of baheda was administered on obese mice with type 2 diabetes and it revealed a preventive effect on hyperlipidemia, obesity, and insulin resistance.
Helps Heal Wounds
Baheda is popular for its ability to heal wounds. Tribespeople in some parts of India uses baheda as folk medicine to treat skin infections and wounds. Baheda’s ethanol fruit extract has a substantial wound healing ability. The extract was applied to animals as an ointment and resulted in wound closure ability and contraction as well as the improved tensile strength of the wound. The study also revealed that baheda possesses 20 to 40 percent tannins that are instrumental in wound healing by various mechanisms.
Taking the baheda is safe in general, but it is still recommended that you consult with your physician before you start taking it.