Hello dear readers. Nail fungus is one of the most common forms of mycotic damage to the body. The disease is quite unpleasant and it is not easy to recover from it. The disease cannot be started, because it is not a cosmetic problem, but a serious pathology. But not everyone knows which approach will be correct. It should be noted right away that self-medication is not the best choice in this situation. But information about what the disease is and how to quickly get rid of nail fungus will not be superfluous for anyone.
What causes nail fungus infection
Nail fungus, or as it is called in medicine, onychomycosis, is a disease that causes damage to the nail plates and adjacent areas by parasitic fungal microorganisms. This is one of the subspecies of mycoses. If we consider all the diseases that only the feet can be subject to, then onychomycosis is the most common.
You can catch the infection in public places where humidity is excessive. This includes baths, steam rooms, swimming pools, beaches.
Wooden objects (benches, deckchairs, etc. ) are widely used here. Due to the porosity of the wood, it is difficult to kill the fungus there.
Also, doctors distinguish different risk groups. For people belonging to one of them, the likelihood of infection increases dramatically.
- cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy;
- after a course of treatment with antibiotics or steroids;
It is not always possible to quickly get rid of the disease. The cure rate depends on the variety of the parasite that caused it, the stage of development of the disease, the area of \u200b\u200bthe lesion, the presence of complications and concomitant diseases, and the general condition of the body.
symptoms of onychomycosis
Nail damage by a parasitic fungus cannot go unnoticed. Symptomatic changes in nail plates are quite pronounced and boil down to the following.
- Lost natural luster, transparency.
- The color is changing. It can be yellowish, brownish, whitish, bluish, greenish, grayish.
- Surface roughness appears.
- Stripes, spots and thickenings are clearly distinguishable.
- Stratification is observed.
- There is exfoliation of the nail bed.
- Different areas are painted and crumbled.
- Surrounding tissues may become red, swollen, and itchy.
- There are sensations of pain.
- The feet give off an unpleasant odor.
Despite all this, self-diagnosis can be difficult. At the beginning of development, the signs of onychomycosis are similar to the symptoms of some other injuries: trauma to the nail area.
How to quickly get rid of nail fungus with folk remedies and medicines
You must be realistic and understand that fungal infection of nails and nail areas is not treated in a week. According to doctors, the healing period can last from 6-8 weeks to six months, and sometimes 8-12 months.
It depends on many factors, as well as nail growth activity. On the hands, this process takes place much faster than on the legs, and therefore healing here comes earlier.
The best and fastest positive results can be obtained if you follow the recommendations below.
- Use a variety of therapeutic measures in the complex. Do not trust the effectiveness of any miracle cure. Competently combine pharmacological preparations and recipes of traditional medicine.
- Treatment should be active, but gentle - aggressive agents, often used for therapeutic purposes, should not affect healthy areas of the body located close to the affected ones.
- Strictly comply with hygiene requirements so that the fungus does not spread, also to avoid reinfection soon after healing. And the probability of this is very high.
- Note the dryness of the affected extremities. Remember that moisture and heat are ideal conditions for the active reproduction of the fungus.
- Eliminate all the causes that caused the appearance of onychomycosis and eliminate them.
- Every day, gently, but as much as possible, cut the growing edge of the nail affected by the disease. If possible, undergo the laser exposure procedure, which very effectively inhibits the pathological activity of pathogens.
Means that act against pathogens are generally divided into three subgroups, depending on the active components. Each of them has in its arsenal both external ointments and tablets of general action on the whole body.
It should be borne in mind that the latter have an extensive list of side effects. Therefore, you should not self-receive medication. To minimize the risks, it is necessary to carry out an examination, identify which varieties of the fungus caused the disease and act with the "targeting" of the medicines.
Subgroups of antimycotic drugs
- Azole agents. They are based on triazole or imidazole, as well as their derivatives. Depending on the concentration, they have fungistatic or fungicidal effects. They are effective in fighting mold-like fungi and yeast.
- allylamine agents. Active ingredients can be terbinafine, naftifine, butenafine. They are able to prevent the growth of the fungus, and also have an anti-inflammatory effect.
- Other drugs. They act on the basis of flucytosine, morpholine, griseofulvin and chlornitrophenol additives. They are distinguished by a more restricted activity aimed at certain types of fungal pathogens.
At the beginning of the development of onychomycotic lesions, only ointments should be used. Only if they turn out to be ineffective, the administration of antimycotics in tablets is introduced.
The difference between creams and ointments:
- have a direct effect on injuries;
- have fewer contraindications;
- adverse reactions are limited.
If you catch the disease at the very beginning of development, then it will be possible to cope with it in a month.
The most popular antifungal creams and ointments
- Zinc ointment. It allows you to relieve inflammation, dry the affected areas, eliminate itching, achieve an absorbent effect.
- Clotrimazole. Broad spectrum substance. Duration of use - from 2 weeks to six months. It also has an antiseptic effect. It can cause skin dryness, burning, allergic manifestations on the skin. Contraindicated for pregnant and lactating women, as well as children under three years old.
- naffin. Fights inflammation, has antimicrobial effect. The agent is prone to accumulation on treated surfaces. Use the ointment no more than twice a day. The tool is not used during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
use of pills
To provide a systemic effect on the entire body, the doctor prescribes oral tablets. Broad-spectrum drugs are prescribed.
- Substances fluconazole, medoflucon. It is enough to take it only once a day. The agent is well tolerated. In rare cases, intestinal disorders and rashes on the body may occur. The course of treatment can be from 1 to 4 weeks.
- Orungal substances, sporanox. Can be used for pulse therapy. The drug is not prescribed for renal failure, pregnancy, hypersensitivity to the action of the drug. May cause allergic reactions, dizziness, hypokalemia, abdominal pain.
All medicines for nail fungus on hands or feet should be taken only after consulting a doctor.
How to treat toenail fungus with folk remedies at home
First of all, you must strictly follow all medical recommendations, not stop taking medicines and end treatment, and not interrupt the course after eliminating particularly harassing symptoms.
In addition, you need:
- regularly use local baths;
- applying a specialized varnish that blocks the spread of the fungus and also has a therapeutic effect;
- daily remove the protruding parts of the growing nail, which is affected by the disease;
- use special means to soften the nail plate to remove it;
- steam hands or feet before using external topical agents;
- take measures to prevent the infection of families.
Lacquers have a number of advantages. The active ingredients penetrate very deeply into the affected nails, but at the same time they harden and do not leave marks on clothes, sheets, shoes.
The hardened layer reliably blocks the supply of oxygen to pathogens, which blocks their activity. But varnish products are effective only at the initial stage of onychomycosis.
Before using varnishes, you should resort to using a warm local shower. Soggy boards affected by a fungus are cut to the maximum, treated with a file or other grinding device. The surface is dry
Lacquer is also recommended for covering healthy nails. The procedure is repeated every night for a long time - from several months to six months.
Help from a surgeon
Both the part and the whole board can be removed. But this is not a guarantee of complete relief from the disease. The likelihood of further spread of a fungal infection is very high.
After surgery, the finger heals for a long time. In addition, suppuration may occur. A newly grown nail can become deformed. A preferred alternative to such a method is laser therapy.
After surgical removal of the damaged nail formation, special emphasis is placed on drug treatment of the fungus. In some, especially severe cases, the growth zone can be removed, after which the finger will become "naked" - the nail will no longer be able to grow here.
Alternative methods are slower than medical ones but have fewer side effects. They can be effective only for the treatment of the initial stage of the development of the disease.
Subsequently, folk recipes are used exclusively in combination with pharmacological preparations as auxiliary measures.
For the treatment of nail fungus, these remedies are used.
- Garlic. Apply the garlic gruel in the form of applications on sore nails. A fixing bandage is placed on top. An evening repetition of the procedure is practiced. You can also use squeezed garlic juice in an equal mixture with alcohol. Nails are treated with the resulting balm twice a day.
- Vinegar. Acetic acid acidifies the environment, which inactivates pathogens. This tool lubricates damaged nails every day. You can use vinegar compresses. To do this, cotton balls are moistened in vinegar and attached to the desired fingers in the affected area. Compresses last all night, removing in the morning.
- Peroxide. As with vinegar and other similar products, apply directly to nails or cotton swabs. Peroxide acts as an antiseptic.
- Alcoholic iodine solution. They can cover nail plates, including healthy ones, 1-2 times a day. Also, an iodine supplement is suitable for any bath. For this, just add a few drops of the product.
- Propolis tincture. It can be used for lotions, as well as injected into local hand or foot baths. Compresses are left on the nails overnight. You can prepare an ointment, which is a mixture of propolis and butter. The composition is superimposed on gauze and placed on the desired area. The agent is left for 10 hours.
- Burning vegetable remedies. For the treatment of onychomycosis, onions or horseradish are suitable. They have antimicrobial activity. Herbal products are used in the form of porridge. You can also make a kind of ointment by mixing liquid pomace with butter or processed chicken fat.
- Essential extracts. These funds have anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and regenerative effects. For the preparation of local baths or as part of mixtures for compresses, fir oils and some others can be used.
The essential extract is mixed with petroleum jelly in a 1: 1 ratio. It must be rubbed into the damaged nail plates. As always in such cases, the remedy will have a stronger effect if the nails are steamed first.
What is a fungal nail infection?
fungal nail infectionsalso known asdermatophytic onychomycosis🇧🇷The initial fungus that affects the skin on the feet is a common skin infection on the feet, particularly between the toes. In the skin of the feet, the original fungus lives in the keratin that makes up the outer layer of the skin. When the fungus spreads to the nail keratin,fungal nail infection🇧🇷
What causes yeast infections?
fungusspreading from the foot (known as"dermatophyte fungi"), cause most fungal nail infections. Less commonly, nail infections are caused by other types of fungus, usually yeast (eg.Candida) andmold🇧🇷
These fungi tend to attack nails that are already damaged, as it is easier for the fungus to enter. Toenail fungal infections are very common (1 in 4 people may be affected at any one time), less common is toenail fungus. Both types are more common in the elderly, people with weakened immune systems, and people with diabetes and poor peripheral circulation. A warm, moist environment helps fungus grow and cause infections. Wearing tight shoes or using showers, bathrooms or locker rooms can increase your risk of yeast infections.
Are they hereditary?
Absolutely not. However, in some extremely rare cases, there is a genetic risk factor and other family members may also be susceptible to the infection.
What are the symptoms of fungal nail infections?
Initially, there are usually no symptoms. Later, the nails may thicken and become painful when pressed against the inside of the shoe. So they are difficult to trim. The sight of an infected nail, especially a fingernail, can be embarrassing. An affected nail can ruin socks and tights and can also irritate the surrounding skin. Nearby skin can also have a fungal infection; it may itch, crack, blister, or appear whitish, especially between the toes.
What are fungal nail infections like?
nail fungusit usually starts at its free edge and then spreads along the side of the nail to the base of the cuticle. Eventually, the entire nail can be affected. Infected areas turn white or yellowish, become thick and scaly. Less commonly, there may be white inclusions on the surface of the nail. The nails of the big and little fingers are most susceptible to damage from fungal infections. Sometimes, especially in those who regularly do wet work, such as a housewife or cleaning lady, the skin around the nail becomes red and swollen. This is called paronychia and can allow the infection to get into the nail easily.
How are fungal nail infections diagnosed?
fungal nail infectionsusually diagnosed clinically. Your doctor may take a piece of an infected nail and send it to a lab to see if the fungus can be seen under a microscope or grown. Sometimes repeat samples may be required.
Many nail problems can only seemfungal infection, - for example, changes observed in psoriasis after a bacterial infection or an old injury, but antifungal pills will not help. Proper treatment may depend on knowing which fungus is causing problems; it may take several weeks to see results.
Can fungal nail infections be cured?
Yup. However, for successfungal nail infection treatmentlong-term treatment is needed, which can take up to a year. Nails are easier to handle.fungal nail infectionsoften recur, especially on the toes.
How can fungal nail infections be treated?
fungal nail infectionsalone do not bother, not all need treatment. Some people with infected toenails don't worry about them. In this case, they can sometimes be left alone (although the patient should be careful and try not to spread the infection to other parts of the body and nails, as well as to other people).
On the other hand, ifinfected nailscause embarrassment or discomfort, they are usually treated. It is important to treat people whose infections can cause serious health problems, such as diabetes or reduced immunity, to avoid potentially serious health problems.
The aim of the treatment is to eliminate the fungus: then the nail usually returns to normal. However, if the nail was damaged before it became infected, it will be more difficult to clean and it may revert to its original state.nail infectionscaused by mold and yeast can be very resistant to treatment.
Treatment options include:
Treatment applied to the nails (local procedures)
Treatments applied to the nails do not work as well as oral treatments. They are most effective if the infection is at an early stage. The most used methods are amorolfine-based enamel, ciclopirox and tioconazole solution.
They may not be able to clean the deeper parts of the infected nail on their own, but regularly removing the damaged part of the nail with scissors or scraping can help. Medicines taken by mouth, used in combination with an antifungal agent, increase the chance of cure. They may need to be used for 4-12 months before the effect is noticed.
Perfingernail infectionsshorter treatment. The cure rate with local treatments alone is around 15-30%. Topical treatment is safe. Redness and irritation may occur.
Before starting to take the pills, the doctor must send the part of the nail to the laboratory to verify that the diagnosis of fungal infection is confirmed.
Substances available for use in treating fungal nail infections include:
- The substance griseofulvin has been used for many years and is the only one of the three drugs licensed for use in children. It is only fully absorbed with fatty foods (such as milk and dairy products) and long treatment periods are usually required (6 to 9 months for fingernails and up to 18 months for toenails). However, only about three-quarters of infected nails and one-third of infected toenails are shed. Frequent relapses are also possible.
- The substances terbinafine and itraconazole have now largely moved away from griseofulvin. They work better and much faster, although only about 50% of nail infections are cured. Terbinafine should be considered as a first-line treatment for dermatophyte fungi (i. e. , those that affect the feet). It is taken daily for 6 weeks for fingernail infections and for 12 to 16 weeks for foot infections.
- The substance itraconazole is effective in the treatment of dermatophytes; it is also useful for treating other fungi such as yeast. It is usually taken in periods - for a week each month - because it is absorbed through the nail cuticle and continues to work for several weeks. Two weekly courses given for 21 days are usually sufficient for fingernail infections and three for toe infections.
- The substance fluconazole can be effective for Candida fungal infections. It is currently not licensed for fungal nail infections. It seems to be less effective than itraconazole and terbinafine, but it remains an alternative for intolerance to both drugs.
- Other procedures
Laser and photodynamic therapy can be helpful but are less effective than the topical and systemic treatments listed above.
Herbal products are also promoted tofungal nail infection treatment, but there is no conclusive evidence that it is safe or more effective than standard treatments.
Are there any side effects of the treatment?
Oral treatments are more likely to cause side effects than topical treatments.
Terbinafine sometimes causes a potentially very serious allergic reaction, can slightly worsen skin conditions, and sometimes affects the taste buds.
Itraconazole is not indicated for people who are already taking certain medications. Your doctor will inform you about this. Both terbinafine and itraconazole can affect the liver, and your doctor may order a blood test to check this before and during treatment.
Although griseofulvin is the only drug licensed in children, many dermatologists prefer to use terbinafine because it is much more effective.
How do I know if the treatment is working?
The new nail will grow slowly from its base and it may take 6 months to a year after treatment is finished for the nails to look normal again. Foot infections clear up faster and completely than toenails; it can take 18 months for the foot to fully recover.
Surgical nail removal
Sometimes very thick nails that do not respond to pills alone can be removed by surgeons under local anesthesia, but this is rarely done because the level of success of the treatment does not justify surgery.
- Keep nails short, dry and clean. Use one clipper for infected nails and another for normal nails.
- Don't just treat the nails; use an antifungal cream to treat the skin on the foot.
- Avoid cutting cuticles, either by yourself or by a manicurist, as this increases the risk of nail damage and infection.
For a fungal infection on your toes:
- Wear comfortable, well-fitting shoes, no high heels or tight socks.
- Keep your feet dry, wear cotton socks and change them daily, and wear breathable shoes. A regular wash in hot water will clean most contaminated socks, but it may be more effective to use an antifungal spray before washing. Other clothing generally cannot be contaminated.
- Maintain foot hygiene, including treating any infections.
- Wear clean shower shoes when using a shared shower.
- Take special care with the hygiene of the affected feet.
- Consider seeking help from a podiatrist if thick toenails make walking uncomfortable.
The risk of reinfection with the fungus after eliminating the disease is very high. Therefore, you need to clearly follow simple rules:
- follow foot hygiene;
- get rid of shoes, towels and socks that were used during treatment;
- avoid sharing these things with other family members;
- avoid excessive dampness of the feet, use talcum powder;
- treat the inner surfaces of shoes with antiseptics.
Do not forget, all drugs for nail fungus, take after consulting a doctor.