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Toenail fungus

Toenail fungus is an infection that occurs after the fungus inhabits the nail bed on toes, usually on the big toe. It is not dangerous but it should be stopped before it spreads to other toes and other parts of the body. This problem can be embarrassing because of the nail discoloration, but still most people tend to ignore it for a long time since it can be hidden very easily by wearing socks and shoes.

Toenail fungus or onychomycosis is a very common problem that affects approximately 35 millions of people worldwide. There are many cures and remedies available to solve this problem, but the treatment should start as soon as possible as the fungus can be quite persistent.

Toenail fungus symptoms

Symptoms of toenail fungus do not appear suddenly and they may take quite some time do develop and become easily noticeable.

One of the most important symptoms is nail discoloration. The normal color of toenails is opaque pink. When fungus affects is, nail changes color and becomes white, yellow, brown, or even black. Since the discoloring is a gradual process, it may not be noticed at once, but it helps to compare the suspected nail with other, healthy nails. Also, people who believe they might have toenail fungus should avoid nail polish because it can hide the discoloration so it is not treated on time.

Also, fungus makes toenails thicker. They may become brittle and break easily. Thickness will eventually start causing pain, especially while wearing tight shoes.

Because the fungus causes nail degradation, the nail will start to split.

In advanced stages, the affected toenail will change in shape and become deformed, disfigured and oddly shaped.

All of these are certain signs of fungus infection. If a person suspects fungal infection, s/he should see a doctor before the fungus causes more damage to the nail. In severe cases the nail may even fall off completely.

Toenail fungus treatment and remedies

Toenail fungus is not easy to cure because it is located under the nail, where it is hard to reach. There are medications that are designed to penetrate the nail and treat the infection thanks to their anti-fungal ingredients. Those medications usually come with an applicator that makes it possible to reach under the nail. Other medical treatment includes oral medication for fungus.

The other option is to try some of the many home remedies against toenail fungus. Most of them are cheap and already available at home, so it does not hurt to try them, even if they turn out not to be effective for that particular case. More importantly, they do not have side effects, unlike prescription medications. Some of the most used home remedies for toenail fungus include apple cider vinegar and vapor rub.

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