It’s easy to get a fungus but, if left untreated, it’s harder to remove toenail fungus permanently. Don’t let that happen as it will be more difficult to restore the health of your nails.
Many of us decide to ignore, or fail to identify, the early signs of a fungal nail infection. That is until it becomes painful and obvious. Symptoms include yellowing, bad odor, increased thickness, and changes to the shape. By that stage, you need a tea tree oil-based treatment that works fast to undo the damage.
We’re gravitating toward natural solutions for toenail fungus, like Australian tea tree oil. You may not think that a natural remedy is better than an over-the-counter product, but the healing properties of melaleuca oil are an exception to the rule.
Using a natural remedy makes it much safer to treat a fungal infection fast. When you know how to apply tea tree oil to a fungus, not only can you get results, but there is little risk of side effects.
Table of Contents:
- 1 How to Use Tea Tree Oil for Toenail Fungus
- 2 Applying Tea Tree Oil to Your Nails
- 3 Are There Any Side Effects?
- 4 Does Tea Tree Oil Clear Up Fungus Fast?
- 5 What Else Can I Do to Prevent Toenail Fungus?
- 6 Is Tea Tree Oil the Best Treatment for Toenail Fungus?
- 7 Read Our Latest Posts:
How to Use Tea Tree Oil for Toenail Fungus
If you’ve never used tea tree oil for a health issue, it’s important to know how to get results. Leaving your nail untreated, or failing to apply tea tree oil the right way, can lead to worse problems. A fungus that goes untreated can result in considerable pain and the loss of the nail.
A natural remedy will provide safe results when clearing up a fungal infection. We will focus on the effectiveness of this essential oil for toenail fungus. We will cover how and why it works, and how to apply it to fungal toenails.
Why Should I Use Tea Tree Oil?
You may have heard of using tea tree oil for other health conditions. It’s great on multiple skin ailments and has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. But, what makes it so effective?
You extract tea tree oil from the Melaleuca Alternifolia tree. These trees are often found in Australia but do exist in other parts of the world, too. The oil has healing properties that help with a variety of skin and nail conditions. It is a natural antiseptic and antibiotic agent.
- Fact: Tea tree oil also has antifungal properties, so it’s no wonder it works so well on toenail fungus. Experts compare it to clotrimazole. This is an over-the-counter antifungal medication, for the treatment of nail fungus.
Tea tree oil is practical, convenient, and affordable. If you’re prone to fungal infections, you can spend hundreds of dollars on treatments. Essential oils provide a cost-effective alternative that works well. So, whether you get toenail fungus often, or it’s the first time, tea tree oil is one of the best remedies available.
Are Some Essential Oils Better Than Others?
There are things to consider before buying a tea tree oil for a fungal infection. Always look for 100% natural oils. Organic is the best option.
Also, look for the following characteristics:
- Check the percentage of terpinen 4OL. This is the antiseptic agent found in tea tree oil. To be effective, it should have a high concentration of this ingredient.
- Find the right type of bottle. Studies have shown that terpinen 4OL can oxidize due to light exposure. This renders it useless. Choose a dark brown or dark-tinted bottle that blocks out external light.
- If the product contains other essential oils, check the percentage(s). These can also help with fungal infections, but the main ingredient should always be tea tree oil. If it doesn’t have a high percentage of Melaleuca oil, select a better alternative.
The best oils are not processed and distilled with steam. This allows the leaves to keep their natural healing abilities.
How to Properly Prepare Your Nails
If you have toenail fungus, taking good care of your nails is important. They should always be as clean and dry as possible. Once you start using a treatment like tea tree oil, you may want to take a few extra steps in preparing your toenails. These preparation tips will allow the oil’s healing properties to work faster, and you may see results sooner.
- Clip your toenails ahead of time. If your fungal infection is severe, part of the nail growth is ‘dead.’ Getting rid of those dead nails is important as it will allow healthy regrowth to occur. The oil will be able to get underneath the nail and reach the fungus easier. Sometimes, toenail fungus can cause nails to become extremely thick. Buy a specialized pair of thick toenail clippers to cut through the nails.
- Once you’ve clipped your nail, file them down. A coarse nail file is the best option for this. This will help to get any last bits of ‘dead nail’ away. It will also help to expose more of your surrounding skin to the oil. Fungal infections can spread. Being able to use a treatment that can soak into the skin around your nail can help it from spreading to other toes.
- Clean your nails with soap after clipping. This will get rid of bacteria, germs, and other particles that may prevent tea tree oil from working. Dry your nails completely after washing them. A fungus grows and thrives in warm, moist environments. Keeping your feet dry at all times is a key to preventing extra growth.
Applying Tea Tree Oil to Your Nails
Before you apply 100% tea tree oil anywhere on your body, it’s best to do a test. Some people have sensitive skin. While it’s a safe oil, its properties can prove too strong for some when it’s used on its own. If you have done a ‘patch test’ and experienced no reaction, you should be safe.
If you experience minor irritation or want to be safe, create a solution with the tea tree oil. You can still enjoy its benefits by diluting it with a carrier oil. Olive oil and jojoba oil are great neutral carriers. They will also help to add moisture to your nails and the surrounding skin.
Once you have made a solution of tea tree oil, follow these steps:
- Pour a few drops of the oil onto the affected nail(s). Or, soak a cotton ball in the solution and apply to the toenails. Press enough so that the solution comes out and can get into the nail.
- Scrub the affected nails and surrounding skin with a nail brush or toothbrush. This will ensure that the oil can penetrate the area. Always wash this brush after using, and only use it for this purpose.
- Let your feet dry off on their own. You can also soak your feet in a tea tree oil solution after applying it. Use 4-5 drops of tea tree oil in water. Or, use a tea tree oil-based system. Whatever you decide to do, make sure to dry off your feet completely afterward.
- Repeat the application process two times each day. Repeat the clipping/filing process at least once a week, or as needed.
Are There Any Side Effects?
As long as you test tea tree oil on your skin ahead of time, you shouldn’t experience any side effects. Many cosmetic products have started to use tea tree oil as an ingredient. Combining this essential oil with others increases the risk of side effects. Be aware of the extra ingredients, and how they might affect your skin.
The most common side effect associated with tea tree oil is skin irritation. This is usually due to an allergy to the oil itself. Otherwise, 100% tea tree oil on its own is a very safe option to use for toenail fungus.
Keep the following tips in mind as extra safety precautions:
- Never swallow/ingest tea tree oil. It is safest and most effective when applied to the skin.
- Keep oil away from small children, unless approved by a doctor.
- Don’t use it in your eyes or ears.
- Keep the bottle capped. If it’s not stored in the right way, it could go rancid.
- Consult with your doctor before using tea tree oil if you are pregnant or nursing.
Does Tea Tree Oil Clear Up Fungus Fast?
When you use a treatment to fight back against toenail fungus, patience is a virtue. Start using a solution at the very first sign of an infection. Many people either don’t notice the infection at first or wait too long before treating it.
A fungal infection doesn’t become severe overnight. So, it’s impossible to think that a treatment will work in 24 hours. Unfortunately, even the most powerful antifungal treatments can take months to work. It depends on their potency, how your skin responds, and the severity of the infection.
Keep using the treatment for as long as necessary. Even if some symptoms have subsided, treat the infection for several extra weeks. Toenail fungus regrows and spreads if it’s not completely killed off. Because tea tree oil is natural and has few side effects, you can continue to use it until the fungus is gone.
What Else Can I Do to Prevent Toenail Fungus?
Tea tree oil is a good treatment for existing nail fungus. But, you should think about how to prevent a fungal infection in the future. It may not always be possible, but there are precautions you can take.
Keep these preventative measures in mind to help protect yourself:
- Keep your toenails short and clean. This will help to prevent moisture and debris from getting stuck under the nail. It will also prevent the buildup of dirt and other types of bacteria that may cause infection.
- Wear ventilated antifungal socks, and let your feet ‘air out’. If you are prone to toenail fungus, choosing socks made of synthetic material is best. They won’t allow moisture to build up inside, like cotton and wool might.
- Always wear shoes in public places. It’s easy to pick up a fungal infection, so keeping your feet protected is important. It’s especially important in places like the gym, or when you’re walking around a public pool, etc.
- Practice good hygiene. Again, it’s easy to often ignore our feet until we see or feel a problem. Keeping your feet clean and dry is a simple way to protect yourself from infection every day.
Is Tea Tree Oil the Best Treatment for Toenail Fungus?
With so many antifungal treatments, it can be hard to determine which one works the best. If you’re looking for something natural and effective, tea tree oil is a proven option. The fact that it’s trusted by so many people speaks for itself.
Plus, tea tree oil is easy to use and apply daily. It is also less expensive than many popular antifungal treatments. Finally, you can use it for other skin irritation issues, such as cold sores, acne, and skin tags. The antifungal properties oil are strong enough to get rid of toenail fungus fast. That’s why many over-the-counter products include tea tree oil as a primary ingredient.
Looking for a product that utilizes the healing powers of tea tree? If so, we recommend that you use the Purely Northwest Toenail Fungus System. It is three treatments in one, and it’s getting excellent results for even the most stubborn cases.
If you’ve never used tea tree oil as a treatment before, use the tips above to know what you should be looking for. Once you have the right oil and know how to apply it, you can fight back against toenail fungus the natural way.