Toenail fungus is a very embarrassing and painful infection, especially during the summer when bare feet and open-toed shoes are commonly worn. It is caused by an organism that thrives in dark, warm, and moist environment. If it is not treated as soon as it is noticed, it can not only disfigure and discolor the toenails, but also lead to a very disgusting appearance. Tea-tree oil treatment is not only a simple and effective nail care tool, but also a remedy to many skin problems.
Toenail Fungus Infection Symptoms
This infection makes the nails flake-like and brittle. The fungal infection starts below the toenails, making their treatment difficult. It destroys nails by eating into keratin, which forms their surface. An advanced infection makes the nails appear unsightly, with the skin near the nail turning rough. The symptoms are often mistaken for those of an ingrown toenail, as they are quite similar.
- Toenails appear discolored and spotty, with the nails turning yellowish brown or black.
- They become thick, and grow to double the normal size.
- They start giving out a foul smell.
- A smelly substance accumulates below the nails.
- After some time, this substance makes the nails crumble and fall off.
- The toes look shriveled and ugly.
- The nails get detached from the nail bed.
- As the infection grows, it becomes really difficult and painful to wear a shoe.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is extracted from the leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia, a tree native to Australia. Tree tea oil has been used by Australian aborigines since prehistoric times to cure skin problems like acne, eczema, and scabies. They have also used it for dressing of wounds. Its name originated from ancient times, when its leaves were used for concocting a tea, to promote a healthy skin. Tea tree oil is obtained through steam distillation of the leaves.
Tea Tree Oil Treatment For Toenail Fungus
Being an effective and safe way of treating toenail fungus, tea tree oil is increasingly used as a natural cure by people, so as to avoid taking prescription drug treatments. Oral prescription drugs are not only expensive, but also considered unsafe due to their side effects. Tea tree oil is readily available at home, as it is used as a remedy for minor skin allergies.
It has powerful antibacterial and antifungal properties, which fight against skin conditions and provide a complete cure. An ingredient known as terpenoids, found in the oil, is the reason for its antiseptic and antifungal properties. A compound of terpenoids, known as terpinen-4-ol, is a major constituent. Dermatophytes, which is the cause for diseases like the toenail and Candida fungus, can be fought with terpenoids.
Maximum benefit from the treatment can be achieved by following the right ways of application. Before applying, make sure that you are not allergic to the oil by trying it on the inner arm. You can continue with the application if there is no reaction.
- Use a cotton swab for application.
- Drench the swab with 2-3 drops of undiluted tea tree oil.
- Wipe the swab on the affected part, just below the nail.
- Apply a good quantity over the nail.
- Cover the oil-coated area with a plastic while sleeping.
- Leave the application to dry out for the next day.
- Repeat the application until the infection is gone.
This treatment has been considered effective, as the most stubborn fungal infections can be cleared with a regular application of tea tree oil on the infected area. Though complete relief is not immediately achieved, a soothing effect starts within a few days of use. Tea tree oil treatment is a remedy with the potential to make the use of natural cures, much more popular than the conventional way of treatment. It can be a much more popular instrument, as it is not only beneficial for toenail fungus, but also for many other skin problems.
Disclaimer: This Buzzle article is solely for informative purpose and not intended to replace the advice of a medical expert.