Do your toes look thick, crumbly and yellowish or discoloured? Beware, it may be the result of toenail fungus.
This fungal infection can start off as a tiny spot of white or yellow on the toe, but fungus propagates very quickly, especially in humid conditions. If your toes are continually kept in dark, moist environment, fungus thrives. So wearing sweaty socks all day is a perfect environment for the fungus to survive and multiply.
Toenail Fungus During Pregnancy – The Complication
During pregnancy, women are more susceptible to toenail fungus. Public places like swimming pools, gyms and showers are hot beds of these fungal infections.
- Many women who have already had the infection before conceiving, reported that pregnancy caused the fungus to advance quickly to other toes.
- If toenail fungus is not treated, the infection can spread to the nail bed and cause pain.
[ Read: Bacterial Infections During Pregnancy ]
Experts’ Opinion On Toenail Fungus And Pregnancy
Obstetricians and gynecologists specifically tell pregnant and breastfeeding women to not take any medication for toenail fungus.
- Oral medications, usually taken for toenail fungus, can harm the fetus and even cause birth defects in rare cases.
- Home remedies and topical medication that have no way of interfering with the baby, can be applied to the affected areas.
[ Read: Ear Infection During Pregnancy ]
Getting Rid Of Toenail Fungus During Pregnancy
There are two ways the toenail fungus of a pregnant woman can be treated- by using home remedies or topical medicine.
Topical medicines include anti-fungal creams or ointments that can be applied directly to the affected toenail.
1. Vicks VapoRub can be used to keep toenail fungus under control. It has to be dabbed onto the nail twice, daily and regularly for months. It may be a slow recovery process, but if you are thorough for months, it gets rid of the fungus.
2. Some over-the-counter lotions contain urea, which speeds up absorption, but consult your obstetrician or gynaecologist before applying it.
3. Hydrogen peroxide can be used, but not directly. It can be diluted by adding 3 parts water to 1 part peroxide before applying to the nail using a cotton pad.
Topical medicines are not particularly effective, unless taken alongside oral medication. But these manage to keep the condition under check until oral medication can be taken.
[ Read: Torch Infection In Pregnancy ]
Home Remedies To Treat Toenail Fungus During Pregnancy
How to treat toenail fungus treatment while pregnant? There is no place like home, and this is true when it comes to medicine too! Home remedies are particularly helpful for toenail fungus problem of pregnant women.
1. Tea tree oil is a great home remedy as it has fungicidal and antiseptic properties. You can dilute it with olive oil and rub the oil on the toenail before applying with a cotton ball.
2. You can make a mixture or baking soda, Epsom salts, white vinegar and hot water and soak your feet in the solution for a few minutes thrice a day for a few weeks.
3. Pure orange oil is another good remedy. Simply dip a Q-tip in the oil and dab it over and around the nail and let sit for an hour. You can dilute orange oil in grape seed oil before applying.
4. Garlic has anti-fungal properties, so you can cut a clove of garlic and rub it over the toenail. You can also dilute garlic oil with vinegar and apply on the nail.
[ Read: Skin Allergy During Pregnancy ]
Ask The Doctor
No matter how sure you are of a treatment, do seek the opinion of your gynecologist before starting it.
- Doctors ask patients not to take over the counter antifungal medications like griseofulvin because they may cause the baby harm.
- They suggest that unless you have to urgently treat the fungus, which is an unlikely turn of events during pregnancy, non-intrusive, topical medicine should be enough to keep the infection in check.
By exercising a little care and caution and seeking medical help on time, a toenail infection can be controlled before it spreads to other parts.
So if you are pregnant, do not fear! Try the above home remedies in conjunction with the medication prescribed by the doctor and you will be rid of the infection in no time!
Have already faced this situation? Do share what remedies you relied on to cure it with other readers in here.
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