Toenail fungus, also called tinea unguium, constitutes about half of all nail abnormalities. There are more than 3 million US cases per year, and it’s the cause of nearly half of all nail disorders in North America. The only good news is that you can use a toenail fungus treatment while breastfeeding, once you know which products and ingredients are safe to use.
The most common symptoms of a fungal nail infection are thickening and yellowing. Also, as the condition progresses, the nail may become brittle with pieces breaking off completely. You’ll need some of the best thick toenail clippers if you want to keep your nails trim and enable your preferred treatment to work properly.
If left untreated, the skin will become inflamed underneath and around the nail. People with less severe nail fungus show no other bodily symptoms, but those with a severe fungus may notice a foul smell, lose a nail, and even experience psycho-social problems.
That’s why it’s important to find a treatment that will clear up toenail fungus permanently. The problem is that many over-the-counter products contain chemicals that can sometimes get into the bloodstream, and this is a big problem when you’re breastfeeding.
In half of all suspected cases of toenail fungus, there’s no fungal infection, but a nail deformity or injury/trauma. That’s the reason why a proper diagnosis must be reached to confirm the infection before any treatment is used. If not, it’s not going to heal.
Most treatments involve the use of topical or oral antifungal medications. These include terbinafine hydrochloride and itraconazole. Topical agents are the nail creams that need to be applied daily for prolonged periods of time, ranging from 3 weeks to 12 months.
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How to Prevent Toenail Fungus during Breastfeeding
Here are some ways to prevent nail fungus:
- Don’t sit around in footwear in the evening. Let your feet breathe.
- Keep your nails cut short to help the treatment work. Use your own pedicure tools.
- Disinfect all tools used to trim nails immediately after usage.
- Wear antifungal socks that can absorb sweat and reduce moisture.
- Regularly clean your feet with soap and water, and dry them off thoroughly.
- Use an anti-fungal spray to sterilize the inside of your shoes
Treating Toenail Fungus while Breastfeeding
During breastfeeding, if you notice that your nail is becoming deformed, thick, and discolored then it’s time to take action. As soon as you discover that you have a toenail infection, you should use a natural treatment right away.
Treating toenail fungus can be challenging while breastfeeding, or even during pregnancy. If you have a mild fungal infection, a few weeks of treatment is all that’s required to heal. If the fungus has been eating away your nails for months, it’ll take longer to cure.
A good remedy to use during breastfeeding and pregnancy is tea tree oil. No tests have been performed, but it’s a natural substance. Research conducted has shown that it is effective in curing toenail fungus and in treating athlete’s foot.
Tea Tree Oil Treatment
- You will need a 100% Australian tea tree oil solution and a cotton ball.
- To use, apply the tea tree oil with a cotton ball to the infected area 2 to 3 times daily.
- Continue for at least a month after the condition appears to have gone away.
We recommend using a tea tree oil-based treatment, called Purely Northwest System.
Note: Do not take this solution orally, as it may/will have a serious toxic effect on you and your baby. Also, do not use tea tree oil if you are sensitive or allergic to turpentine.
Medicated Nail Polish
A medicated nail polish isn’t a treatment, but it can help with the mild symptoms of toenail fungus. Using Dr.’s Remedy Enriched Nail Polish will enable you to hide the ugliness of the fungus, and it won’t things any worse. Using untreated polishes will cause the fungus to get worse, so you need to use the right type. Click the link for more info on what you should buy and how to apply it for the best possible results.
There are prescriptions polishes, such as ciclopirox nail lacquer, that aren’t suitable when breastfeeding. Whereas, Dr.’s Remedy polish is 100% safe for women who are breastfeeding, and for children. You may be able to use it as a stop-gap until you’ve finished nursing.
Oral Antifungal Medications
Oral meds are taken for 3 months or longer. While some oral antifungal medications are safe to use during breastfeeding, most pose a risk to babies. The contents can be passed on in your breast milk, so stay well away from them.
It’s recommended that you talk to your doctor before using any oral medication. You must tell him that you are a lactating mother so that he/she can properly advise you. It’s unlikely that you’ll be prescribed a medication due to the higher-than-average risk that’s posed by treatment.
As is the case with antifungal medications, you also need to be careful with chemical-based antifungal nail creams. Most external creams are okay to use, provided that you only use ones that contain natural ingredients.
You should avoid using Lamisil cream when breastfeeding as it has been known to get into the mother’s breast milk. It’s a popular treatment, but it’s not right for you. If a product has got chemicals in it or it’s taken orally, our advice is to avoid it completely.
The problem is that there’s not been a lot of research on this subject, but you should avoid any treatments that target fungus directly via the bloodstream. Use an essential oil to treat toenail fungus when breastfeeding.
Women have enjoyed good results with tea tree oil, so it’s worth using the 3-part Purely Northwest Toenail Fungus System. You’ll particularly like the therapeutic foot soak. This will help to soften up the nails so that the other treatments can be easily absorbed by the toenail(s).
Make sure that you get the opinion of a doctor before using any treatment for toenail fungus when breastfeeding. They have access to all of the latest research and will be able to give you the best-possible advice.