According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), toenail fungus treatment is much more difficult compared to similar conditions such as ringworm. This is because the fungus (dermatophytes and fusarium etc) aggressively attacks the nail bed which is underneath the toenail. Onychomycosis, which toenail fungus is medically known as, is a pesky condition that recurs often. It has a high occurrence rate to all ages, with the elderly as high as 25%! This article seeks to explore some of the best natural remedies you can try to get rid of toenail fungus for good.
How to Get Rid of Toenail Fungus with Bleach
Bleach is not just a wonderful household cleaning agent but also a potent compound in your never ending quest to getting rid of toenail fungus. If you are looking for what is the most effective treatment for toenail fungus, bleach is your solution (no pun intended).
Bleach, chemically known as sodium hypochlorite, is beneficial when applied correctly As bleach in its purest form can be an irritant to your body, it must always be diluted before using it on your own skin. Diluted or not, it must never get into contact with your eyes.
As for all toenail fungus treatments, your affected toenail should be trimmed as much as possible to the nail bed. We will then soak the affected foot into a gallon (3.8 liters in metric measurement) of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of bleach. You can do it in a single 30-minute session or dividing it into 3 sessions of 10-minutes each.
In contrast to the much gentler soaking method, you may prefer the more aggressive and possibly quicker way: by combining vaseline with bleach. "Dr. Olsen's Ringworm and Onychomycosis Treatment" guide (source) suggests applying vaseline to the area around the toenail and then adding one drop of undiluted bleach to infected nail bed. The bleach should be allowed to soak for at least 10 to 15 minutes before being washed off.
Vicks VapoRub for Fungus Treatment
Vicks VapoRub (topical ointment by P&G, one of the world largest FMCG companies) contains a few main ingredients that can help kill fungus, namely thymol, menthol camphor and eucalyptus oil. Both compounds are said to contain anti-fungal properties which will aid in toenail fungus treatment. In a study conducted by Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine (JABFM) (source), Vicks VapoRub was in fact found to be effective to a certain extent in treating onychomycosis. The test participants merely just applied the ointment once a day to the affected toenail.
On a side note, Vicks as a home remedy is often disputed as a myth in its effectiveness. Rest assured it definitely would not cause your toenail fall off or even rot after application! It is definitely worth a try.
Listerine Foot Soak
Listerine, a popular antiseptic mouthwash, has beneficial essential oils such as menthol, thymol, and eucalyptus. Methyl salicylate, which is also an active ingredient, is often said to contain an anti inflammatory effect as well. You can simply use Listerine as a foot soak, 30-minutes per session or dividing it up into 2 to 3 sessions daily. The foot soak not only get rids of toenail fungus but is also beneficial for those who have dry cracked feet or thick dead skin on their feet.
Apple Cider Vinegar for Toenail Fungus
White vinegar or apple cider vinegar both works equally well as they are slightly acidic in nature. Both has pH value of around 2 to 3. Apple cider vinegar is contains more alkaline components but it is still considered acidic. Vinegar is a useful natural agent against toenail fungus as its make it excel at disinfecting bacteria and balance pH of the infected area.
Similar to the above methods, we can use White vinegar or apple cider vinegar foot soak (equal parts of water and vinegar) for 30-minutes a session. Vinegar and baking soda is sometimes used as a foot soak as well. Baking soda reduces up moisture that can cause toenail fungus and can therefore be used inside socks as well. A study published by US National Library of Medicine proved that baking soda does indeed possess antifungal properties (source).
Listerine and Vinegar Foot Soak Recipe for Toenail Fungus
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.