Best Natural Remedies for Nail Fungus
Published April 25, 2022.
Nail fungus or fungal nail infection is caused by a fungal invasion of the nail structure. They are very common, making up to 50% of the nail abnormalities. Although they can also affect fingernails, the toenails are more susceptible to the fungus due to less blood flow (1).
Fungal nail infections can be caused by dermatophytes, yeasts, or molds. They can cause permanent damage to the nails and may lead to other serious infections that can spread to the rest of the body.
However, fungal toenail infections are treatable. Many home remedies are proven to be highly effective in treating toenail fungus, which will be discussed in this article. Keep reading to learn more.
Can You Self-Diagnose Nail Fungus?
Yes, you can self-diagnose nail fungus if your nails are:
- Brittle or crumbly
- Whitish-yellowish or brownish
- Thick and changing in shape
- Detached from the nail bed
- Smelling and slightly foul
However, your healthcare provider can do it more precisely and rule out other causes with similar symptoms.
How to Treat Nail Fungus at Home
Prescription oral antifungal drugs are very effective in treating nail fungus, but significant adverse effects limit their use. Topical antifungal therapies have minimum adverse effects, but they aren’t as effective as oral ones.
Therefore, the various tried and tested home remedies to treat toenail fungus are advised whenever possible, the effectiveness of which will depend on how severe the infection is.
Home remedies to treat nail fungus:
- Snakeroot extract This extract is very popular in Ayurvedic medicine. It has strong anti-fungal properties and is commonly used to treat toenails. Apply the extract two to three times a week on the toenail and reap the benefits in a few months.
- Essential oils Essential oils have natural antifungal and antibacterial properties. The ones that are very effective in treating toenail fungus are tea-tree oil, clove oil, clary sage oil, lavender oil, eucalyptus oil, jojoba oil, lemongrass oil, cinnamon oil, and manuka tree oil.
- Vicks Vaporub The camphor and the eucalyptus oil in Vicks Vaporub are very effective in treating infected toenails. Just apply a small amount to the infected site before going to bed and see the miracle within a week (2).
- Ozonated oil Oils that contain ozone gas are called ozonated oil, such as olive oil and sunflower oil. When applied to the infected nail, the ozone delivers oxygen to the infected area and may kill microbes. It also stimulates the skin cells to heal faster (3).
- Olive leaf extract This oil contains oleuropein, which is naturally antifungal. You can either take them in the form of a capsule or apply them to the toenail to reduce infection (4).
- Garlic Place chopped or crushed garlic cloves on the affected area for 30 minutes every day and see the difference within a week. Garlic has powerful antifungal properties that may kill the fungus and prevent it from growing again (5).
- Epsom salt This is magnesium sulfate and can be beneficial in relieving your nail fungus. You can mix 2 tsp of Epsom salt with 4 cups of hot water and soak your feet or hands in the solution for 15 minutes a day. You can also try to make a concoction with several natural antifungal agents. For example, in 4 cups of warm water, mix half a cup each of Epsom salt and baking soda and a quarter cup each of hydrogen peroxide and vinegar.
- Iodine Iodine applied topically can be a very effective cure within a reasonable price range. It is better to get a decolorized iodine (that will not stain). Gradually your infected nail will fall off, and a new healthy nail will take the spot (6).
- Apple cider vinegar (ACV) You can mix this with water to make a foot or hand bath and soak your nails for 15 minutes twice a day. ACV has strong anti-fungal properties and can cure nail fungus, especially those infected with Candida species (7).
Can Nail Fungus Be Prevented?
Yes, nail fungus can be prevented with the following methods:
- Wash your hands and feet regularly
- Keep them dry and allow them to breathe
- Moisturize your nails after washing so that they are not dry and prone to cracks
- Wear clean socks every day
- Keep your shoes clean
- Do not walk barefoot in public areas
- Clean your nails well
- Clip your toenails correctly
- Choose breathable footwear
Fastest Natural Remedies For Treating Nail Fungus
Among natural remedies for treating nail fungus, daily application of essential oils such as tea tree oil, oregano oil, or clove oil is recommended.
A faster natural remedy, however, is Fungix anti-fungal therapy, a natural anti-fungal, anti-itching, and antiseptic toenail formula made of potent natural ingredients. It is scientifically formulated to fight even deep-rooted infections. Manufactured in the USA in a cGMP certified lab, this unique blend is 100% vegan friendly.