Toenail fungus or onychomycosis is a common problem in which a fungal infection results in discoloration, thickening, and deformity of the toenails. It affects about 30 percent of the American population and accounts for nearly half of all nail abnormalities seen by medical professionals. Despite its prevalence, it is not talked about. It is embarrassing for people to admit that they have it. Some suffer in silence, some go untreated, and some choose helpful home remedies. Nail fungus can cause significant pain and discomfort because of the location of the infection under the nail plate. If you have toenail fungus, you need to see a specialist in toenail fungus in Bakersfield for treatment before the infection spreads to other nails or, worse, your skin. Here, we look at some of the treatment options you can take advantage of.
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To treat toenail fungus, over-the-counter topical creams are available. But it may take a long time for these products to work because you have to expose the nail fungus to these drugs for several months before any noticeable change in your nails.
Topical medications include ciclopirox, efinaconazole , haloprogin, amorolfine and naftifine. Ciclopirox is available as a nail lacquer for the treatment of toenail fungus. It is effective in treating mild to moderate forms of fungal infection. Systemic medication is not used often because it can have significant side effects and liver problems, limiting physicians’ dosages.
2. Nail Excession
Some physicians are using nail excision as a treatment method for onychomycosis. When the infected tissue is removed, new nails in this area can grow healthier. There are two ways of doing the procedure:
Debride or Debridement
The infected nail is trimmed back carefully until healthy tissue appears underneath. The trimmed nail is obliterated. The remaining tissue will eventually grow out and form a new healthy nail.
The infected tissue is cut away in the shape of a flap, much like when you get your hair cut. Once the infected tissue is removed, the area underneath healthy tissue is stitched back together with very fine stitches.
Performing either of these procedures requires a fair amount of experience. Not only does the physician have to know how to do it, but they have also to be able to recognize healthy tissue from infected tissue.
When the infection is not too severe, you can try home remedies to treat fungal infections yourself. They are less expensive options compared to professional treatment at a foot doctor’s office. Home remedies include soaking your toes in white vinegar or rubbing them with alcohol-soaked cotton balls every day for ten days. Soaking your feet in apple cider vinegar and hydrogen peroxide for five minutes a day has also been found to improve the condition. Other products that are effective in treating fungal infection include tea tree oil, bleach, grapefruit seed extract, and Epsom salt.
In summary, toenail fungus is a fungal infection that affects the toenails causing discoloration, thickening, and deformity. While it can cause a lot of pain, you can effectively treat it using anti-fungal medications. Nail excision is also adequate as it removes the infected tissue, allowing new healthy tissue to grow. Self-care can control the condition if it is not severe.