2011   Aug 14

Yellow toenails or discolored toenails may often occur due to over use of nail polish yet fungus infections are considered to be the primary reason. The fungal infections known as Onychomycosis may occur due to damp and warm conditions. Such toenail infections can become quite painful and a distressing sight. The infections occur when fungus microorganisms enter cuts or bruises in the nail. Yellow toenails can be an initial symptom of such an infection which if remains untreated may turn into a severe condition. Yellow toenails must be taken seriously and immediately treated as this condition is also contagious which means others who are in contact with the infected person are also at risk to contact the infection.

Symptoms of Yellow Toenails

  • Initially the yellowing may begin at the periphery or at a corner of the toenail then gradually growing inward.
  • One or more toenails may be infected.
  • Feet odor or a stench may come out due to the infection.
  • Nails may get inflamed and soreness may develop and no foot wear may be comfortable except the front open sandals.
  • Skin surrounding the infected toenails may also get affected as they might become scaly and swollen.
  • The toenails become thick which are difficult to cut.

Causes of Yellow Toenails

  • Applying nail polish or removing the same.
  • Wearing closed shoes or not removing socks for long hours as the fungus thrive in warm, moist and dark conditions.
  • Weakened immune system or circulation problems due to conditions or diseases like diabetes.
  • Genetic predisposition towards yellow toenails or Yellow Toenail Syndrome.
  • Weakened or brittle toenails.

Home Remedies for Yellow Toenails

  • Tea tree oil is a fungicide which can be applied on the affected toenail.
  • Dip your toenails in a solution of apple cider vinegar and water in equal ratios for ten minutes regularly. Ensure that your toenails are completely dried after the soaking is done.
  • Dab cotton dipped in a mixture of few drops of lavender oil and tea tree oil on the affected toenails.
  • Undiluted vinegar if applied regularly can be effective in killing the germs.
  • Oregano oil and olive oil mixed together can be applied to prevent further spread of the fungus.

Prevention of Yellow Toenails

  • The most important preventive measure is to maintain proper hy
  • giene and keep your toes clean and dry. Change socks and open your shoes for a while to allow ventilation.
  • Once you return home clean your feet with an antibacterial soap and also scrub your feet with a nail brush to drive out dead cells, dirt and grime.
  • Use 100% cotton socks.
  • Wear properly fitting comfortable shoes.

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