First of all, let’s give me a pat on the back for being brave and admitting on the world-wide web that yes, I have had toenail fungus. This is not something every woman wants to announce. That’s why I found myself practically whispering my dilemma to the nurse practitioner.
What is toenail fungus? The group of fungi is [organisms that include yeasts, molds, rusts, and mushrooms] (Anonymous, 2006). Environmentally speaking, fungus is a positive and useful part of our ecosystem. However, when a fungus grows on our toenails, it’s just ugly. It can look yellowish, green, white, or a yucky mix of the three colors. Along with discoloration, toenail fungus can cause the nail to become very thick and deformed looking.
In its beginning stage, you may discover small white spots on your toenail. Eventually, the white spots may grow into larger white spots and then begin to turn yellowish in color. I discovered that these spots consisting of the not-so-fun-guys (I know, stupid old joke) began to eat away at my nails. I had fungus on my two big toes only. My nails began to get flaky and could be peeled away in layers, sometimes causing the loss of an entire chunk of nail nearly down to the nail bed. I was always sure to dry my toenails well after bathing but there was no mercy from the fungus. Luckily, my toenail fungus never got severe. I did get sick of it though.
Finally, after months of wondering what to do about it and after finally whispering my problem to the nurse practitioner, she told me there were easy ways for me to get rid of the fungus. She told me I could go the prescription drug route, which I’m not enthusiastic about under any circumstances because of costs and potential side-effects. As another option, she told me to soak my affected toenails in two tablespoons bleach to one gallon of water for 20 minutes each day, dry nails well, and apply Vicks VapoRub ointment to the affected nail. I’m going to be honest when I tell you that I never soaked my toenails in the bleach water. My fungus wasn’t that bad so I just applied Vicks VapoRub ointment once a day to my affected nails, and in less than a week I saw an improvement. After a few months the fungus was gone completely from one of the nails and almost completely from the other.
Now, if I notice the slightest hint of a white spot, even if I know that spot came from running my poor toe into the base of some unsuspecting piece of furniture, I apply Vicks again just to be safe. I understand injury to the nail can lift the nail slightly and make room for fungus to move in on the nail bed, look at this site.
If you have nail fungus and are embarrassed by it like I was, try this remedy. If you have severe toenail fungus I recommend talking with a healthcare professional for treatment options. There are options for the treatment of this unsightly mess. My big toenails look happy again. At least that’s what I imagine because I guess I’m a little weird.