Nail RemediesFootSmart Health Facts from The Podiatry Institute
Are you interested in nail remedies for fungal toenails? A nail fungus can cause thick, crumbly or yellow nails. Read below to get more information on how to determine if you have a toenail fungus, and how to best treat symptoms like yellow nails.
Fungi live in warm, dark, moist environments like shoes, socks and stockings, and often infect your toenail beds when the protective nail surface becomes damaged or broken.
Your feet go through a lot of wear and tear, and activities such as running or playing tennis can easily cause a slight rupture in the nail plate. Just banging your toe can cause a break. Moisture found in shoes and socks provides a breeding ground for the nail fungus, known medically as "onychomycosis," which then infects the nail bed through this rupture or break. Once the toenail fungus takes hold, it's kept in place by the nail plate, making it very difficult to get rid of.
You can also become infected with a toenail fungus through person-to-person contact in such places as shared health club or pool showers, or via shared emery boards like those used in a professional nail salon.
Fungal infections affect the appearance of the toenails, making them unsightly. Typically, you will first notice the infection because of nail discoloration. You may develop green or yellow nails, or nails that turn
an even darker color.
Other symptoms of a nail fungus may include:
- Thick and flaky nails.
- Collection of debris under the nail causing a foul odor.
- Splitting of the nail.
- Pit marks on the nail.
Once a nail fungus, or onychomycosis, makes itself at home in your
nail bed, it can be hard to eliminate, and needs to be treated with
The best defense against a toenail fungus and yellow nails starts with well-fitting shoes. There should be a space, about the width of a thumb, from the end of the shoe to the tip of the longest toe, to prevent the toe from being damaged upon impact.
Once the nail fungus is present, however, treat it with any of the
- Liquid and cream treatments applied topically.
- Oral medications – although they can have side effects.
- Good foot hygiene, including wearing clean socks, rotating shoes and thoroughly drying feet between the toes to prevent further spreading of infection.
If the fungus persists after using topical treatments, however, see a podiatrist for additional treatment.