One of the oldest and most trusted toenail fungus remedies is apple cider vinegar. This valuable product has been heavily relied upon throughout the ages to support good health. It helps alkalize the body and is rich in potassium, which supports cell growth. Throughout history apple cider vinegar has been used for infections, arthritis, and as an aid in digestion. It has also been said to aid in the detoxification of bodily organs. It is easily accessible, inexpensive and useful for a variety of problems. For all of these reasons, apple cider vinegar is a wonderful remedy for toenail fungus.
Toenail fungus, also referred to as onychomycosis, accounts for nearly half of all nail disorders and can become quite unsightly and painful. In the first stages, it presents as a light colored spot under the tip of the fingernail, but if left unaddressed this fungus will continue to spread until the entire nail becomes thick and yellow with crumbling edges.
If the fungus is not destroyed, the condition will worsen and eventually the nail will have a distorted shape, the color may become green, brown, or black, and the fingertips may begin to emit a foul odor. At this point the fingers might also be the source of some discomfort and even severe pain.
Fortunately, toenail fungus does not have to be accepted as an unpleasant, but tolerable, part of life. There are many toenail fungus remedies available and apple cider vinegar has been used for hundreds of years.
Apple cider vinegar is considerably less expensive than prescription drugs, pure apple cider vinegar relieves the itching that is caused by nail fungus making it a gentle, all natural remedy for toenail fungus.
An apple cider vinegar hand soak is an effective therapy for toenail fungus. Simply mix one cup of pure all natural apple cider vinegar with two quarts of warm water and soak for 20 minutes. It may not have the most desirable odor, but the relief that is immediately felt as sore fingers contact the vinegar will surely be worth it. Hands should be cleaned with a gentle soap both before and after use. It is necessary to make sure that the fingers and nails are thoroughly dried after the application so as to prevent the fungus from spreading in a moist environment. If necessary, it is permissible to use this method twice daily. While this is reported to be effective, it is quite inconvenient and typically requires daily application for four to six months. Even as the fungus dies and the fingernail begins to clear it is vital to continue application until the infected portion of the nail has completely grown out.
Once the fungus has been taken care of and the nail is completely healthy, it is vital to take steps to ensure that the fungus does not return. Keeping nails clean and trimmed is important because fungus can make a home under the nail. If you typically have your nails done at a salon, be sure that it is a reputable one and that the staff understands the importance of sterilizing all manicure equipment. It also may be necessary to discontinue using nail polish or artificial nails as they can trap moisture under the polish and encourage the growth of fungus. It is also important to keep the hands clean, especially after contacting fungus that may reside on other fingernails or toenails because of the contagious nature of the fungus. If your hands are to be exposed to water for prolonged periods of time, use rubber gloves and make sure to give the gloves ample time to dry inside out after use. Never pick at hangnails or other skin around the nails; germs can more easily find a way into your nails if you do.
In addition to these precautions, maintaining general good health will also lower your risk of developing nail fungus. Because fungus is only able to grow if your immune system is unable to fight it, take steps to see that your immune system is strong by eating well, getting enough rest, and exercising.