Toenail fungus is not only unsightly and embarrassing, it can be a major health hazard to some, especially the elderly and those people with diabetes. Doctors can prescribe medications to treat the toenail fungus, but the medication tends to be harmful to the liver and kidneys. For these reasons, many people have turned to home remedies to treat toenail fungus.
1. Vinegar – In searching through the Internet for a good home remedy for toenail fungus, every site will have something about vinegar on it. Some people have said to soak the toes in vinegar for a certain amount of time, while others claim using a dropper to apply several drops at the base of the toenail works the best. While soaking allows the vinegar to penetrate the nail more thoroughly, it’s moisture that allows the fungus to thrive. Therefore, it seems like using a dropper is a more logical idea.
2. Vicks Vapor Rub – It’s not just for colds anymore! Vicks Vapor Rub contains essential oils, such as tea tree oil, oregano oil and terpenes. The terpenes include eucalyptus, camphor and menthol. All of these substances are said to have properties that kill toenail fungus. The only pitfall to trying the Vicks Vapor Rub technique is that the medications are encased in an oil-based product, which locks moisture in the toenail. This could potentially make the fungus worse.
3. Listerine – It burns your mouth for a reason! Listerine contains some of the same ingredients as Vicks Vapor Rub, namely menthol and eucalyptus. In addition, Listerine has thyme oil and wintergreen oil in it. Some say to soak toes in Listerine for at least 15 minutes, while others say it’s best to apply to the base of the toenails several times daily. Again, soaking can add moisture, rather than take it away.
4. Lemon juice – When sugar is added to this liquid, it makes a tasty summertime treat! That’s not all it’s good for, though. Citric acid is not conducive to flourishing fungi. The juice can be used in drops, applied to the toenail. Sometimes, this method allows a person’s toenail to fall off. If this happens, don’t be alarmed. Keep using the acid and soon a new, fungus-free nail will appear.
Regardless of which method a person uses, it may or may not work. After all, humans are all different and nothing works on everyone. For severe cases, it may be best to consult a podiatrist prior to attempting any home remedies.