What causes toenails to thicken?
Several causes result in developing thick toenails. The main cause is onychomycosis or fungal infection of the nails caused by dermatophytes (nail fungus). Physical trauma, Psoriasis,Lichen planus and diabetes may also cause thick nails to develop. Traditionally, oral antifungal treatments were prescribed.
Soak your toes in warm water for five to 10 minutes. This will help soften the nail and allow you to more easily cut the thick nail.
Although there are many potential causes of thick nails, a fungal infection is the most likely cause in the toenails. Other conditions, such as psoriasis or diabetes, may also cause thick nails to develop.
The growth rate of nails decreases when people get older. This results in thickening because nail cells pile up. The process of nail cells piling up is referred to as onychocytes. Another reason why fingernails don't thicken as much is their growth rate is smaller than the growth rate of toenails.
If you have had an injury to your toe and your nail is temporarily thick, it may get better over time. As a new, healthy nail grows out, you can see if it gets better. However, due to the slow growth of toenails, this can take many months.
Once your toenail grows thick, it will always be thick, this is a permanent change.
Nail psoriasis sometimes causes too much keratin to grow under the nail. This overgrowth is called subungual hyperkeratosis. People with hyperkeratosis may notice a white, chalky substance under the nail. When this occurs in the toenails, the pressure of shoes pushing down on the nails might cause pain.
Podiatry treatment for thickened toenails
Our podiatrists regularly reduce thickened toenails as part of a general foot care treatment (medical pedicure). This involves nail cutting, removal of corns and callus, followed by application of a heel balm, making your feet feel great again.
“Applying Vicks VapoRub to fungus-infected toenails can clear up the notoriously hard-to-treat condition. Michigan State University clinicians found that applying the product daily to the infected nail cleared the condition in 32 of 85 patients, though it took anywhere from 5 to 16 months…”
I would always advise to file a thickened nail rather than cut it, this way you can do little harm to the nail and surrounding skin. A 'Diamond deb' nail file usually works best, filing the nail 2-3 times a week will usually keep the thickness reduced.
Does Vaseline help toenails?
"It helps your cuticles, keeps your hands and nails hydrated, and works better than callus removal if you put it on your feet and wear socks overnight," says Nguyen. "The best part is that it's affordable and probably already in your medicine cabinet!" she adds.
Are thick toenails always fungus? No, thick toenails are usually not fungus. The toenail root responds to pressure by growing a nail plate that is thicker and sometimes detached from the nail bed — a place where the fungus can hide and grow.
Getting a fungal infection on your toenails can cause the nails to turn yellow and brittle, and the bugs that cause the infection often emit a foul odor as they feed on your body. The same microorganisms that cause athlete's foot also are the cause of fungal toenail infection.
Your toenails tell a lot about your overall health. A fungal infection often causes thickened yellow toenails. Thick, yellow nails also can be a sign of an underlying disease, including lymphedema (swelling related to the lymphatic system), lung problems, psoriasis, or rheumatoid arthritis.
If your nails are crusted with keratin debris, your podiatrist may remove it to improve the appearance of your nails. In severe toenail fungus cases, toenail surgery may be required to temporarily remove the infected nail so the nail bed can be treated directly.
Terbinafine for toenail fungus treatment
The best pill for toenail fungus is terbinafine. Evidence suggests it works better than the alternatives with the fewest side effects. Terbinafine results in resolution of toenail fungus 76% of the time.
- Oils. Some oils contain antifungal, anti-bacterial, and/or antiseptic qualities. ...
- Garlic. Garlic includes strong antifungal properties, making this a top home remedy for treating particular strains of toenail fungus. ...
- Snakeroot Extract. ...
- Baking Soda. ...
- Mentholated Topical Ointment.
Your health care provider may prescribe an antifungal cream, such as efinaconazole (Jublia) and tavaborole (Kerydin). You rub this product into your infected nails after soaking. These creams may work better if you first thin the nails.
- Clean the affected area with soap and water daily.
- Groom your nails regularly. ...
- Apply an over-the-counter fungal treatment after you gently file your nails.
- Apply Vicks VapoRub on your toenail each day. ...
- Apply tea tree oil twice a day every day.
Conclusions: Vicks VapoRub seems to have a positive clinical effect in the treatment onychomycosis. Toenail onychomycosis is a common diagnosis for primary care physicians.
How do I get rid of thickened toenails?
Applying a small amount of melted coconut oil can help heal thick yellow toenails. You can purchase over-the-counter (OTC) antifungal nail creams and ointments. Be sure to clip and clean your nails before use to make sure the creams reach deeper layers. Laser therapy can be used to treat a fungal toenail infection.
In some cases, onychauxis can be treated. This is especially true when the abnormally thick nails are the result of an underlying condition, such as an infection or trauma. It may take time — nails do grow slowly — but it's likely you can recover normal nail growth.