Are home remedies for unsightly toenail fungus treatment effective?
There are plenty of good reasons to take a do-it-yourself approach to minor medical problems. There’s no doctor’s visit involved, and without prescription medication there’s no risk of side effects. Many home remedies also have little to no cost, making them an even more attractive option.
What’s the only problem? When it comes to toenail fungus, known as onychomycosis by podiatrists, home remedies rarely if ever work. Good self-care in the form of proper foot and nail hygiene, however, is essential.
Chronic toenail fungus has the reputation of being very difficult to cure completely. To further complicate matters reinfection is quite common. As such, prescription antifungals represent a patient’s best hope of completely eradicating the fungus. These drugs aren’t perfect, but clearance rates of over 70% are possible when topical and oral agents are used.
Toenail fungus is by nature difficult to treat since the active infection is shielded by the nail itself. In order to give any treatment the best chance of working the feet must be kept as clean as possible. All nails, even those which don’t appear to be infected, should be kept neatly trimmed. If nail thickness is an issue it pays to manually thin the affected nails with a small file. This last measure is especially important because it helps topical agents penetrate the nail to reach the infection below.
Toenail fungus Treatment and prognosis
While vertically growing toenails may look a bit odd they rarely pose any kind of health risk. Whenever nail growth changes direction it’s a good idea to go back to proper nail care basics. Many cases of vertical nail will resolve themselves over a period of weeks as the nails are cared for properly.
Should this type of conservative treatment fail it’s best to consult with a podiatrist. In general, this is a good idea if you’ve begun to suspect that your nails have been slowly changing over time.