Toenail fungus is a common foot condition that can be difficult to get rid of.
Fortunately, you can use a combination of home remedies and antifungal medications to treat this fungal nail infection.
In this article, we are going to talk about the use of vinegar foot soaks for treating toenail fungus and answer the question – “Does vinegar kill fungus?”
We will also be discussing other popular home remedies that can help with a fungal infection.
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How Does Vinegar Kill Fungus?
While it is primarily used in the preparation of food or sauces, vinegar happens to have medicinal properties, as well.
It can be used for the treatment of various fungal and bacterial infections. Vinegar is essentially an aqueous solution of acetic acid.
This is the active agent in vinegar that can kill the fungus. When you apply vinegar to the affected area, it will modify the pH levels of your skin.
This can prevent the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi.
If you have tried using antifungal medications for treating your fungal infection but are not getting the desired results, then we suggest you try using apple cider vinegar.
This can be very effective against fungal infections affecting your toes or fingernails. All you have to do is apply it to the affected area twice a day until the infection goes away.
Besides applying a vinegar solution directly to the affected area, you can also use vinegar to prepare a foot soak. Let’s see how this works.
How Can You Prepare A Vinegar Foot Soak?
A vinegar foot soak is a mixture of vinegar diluted in hot water. It can serve as a highly effective remedy for treating fungal infections such as athlete’s foot.
You can soak your feet in this mixture twice a day. Make sure you do not soak for more than half an hour each time.
Keep this up for a week or two until the symptoms subside.
If you want to prepare a vinegar foot soak, then do the following:
- Purchase a bottle of vinegar. You do not need to concern yourself over a particular brand. Any bottle of white vinegar or apple cider vinegar should suffice. The only thing you need to check prior to purchasing is the pH of the vinegar. If it is between 2 – 3, then you are good to go.
- Choose a bowl that is large enough for you to soak your feet in. Fill this bowl with vinegar and lukewarm water. You can maintain a ratio of 1:1 or 1:2 for the vinegar and water.
- When the vinegar foot soak is ready, you can soak your feet in it for a designated period of 20 to 30 minutes twice a day.
- Once you have finished soaking your feet, make sure you dry them properly with a towel. Failing to do this would compromise the effectiveness of this home remedy and cause your infection to get aggravated. Remember, a fungal infection thrives in a moist environment, so you must keep your feet dry and clean as much as possible.
You can keep using a vinegar foot soak until the infection improves. Vinegar tends to give off a pungent smell which can be unpleasant for some people.
If you find yourself in the same boat, then we suggest you add a small amount of lavender oil to the mixture. A few drops should suffice.
If you have sensitive skin that reacts negatively to the vinegar foot soak, then we suggest you keep your feet soaked for only ten to fifteen minutes.
You can also dilute the mixture by adding more water. Reducing the number of times you soak your feet can also be helpful.
For instance, you can use a vinegar foot soak once a day or every alternate day, depending on your skin’s sensitivity.
If you do not have sensitive skin and want quicker results, then you can dilute the mixture to contain a greater concentration of vinegar too.
Make sure you observe for any inflammation or skin irritation when trying this.
What Other Home Remedies Can Be Used For Fungal Infections?
We have discussed how does vinegar kill fungus, but there are other home remedies for the treatment of fungal infections, as well.
Some of the most popular ones include:
- Coconut oil– This is particularly effective against a yeast infection. It contains fatty acids that can work as fungicides. You can dab some coconut oil onto the affected portion two or three times a day until the infection goes away.
- Tea tree oil– This oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties. You must clean the infected area with soap and water then use a cotton swab for applying the oil to it. Dab the area thoroughly so that the oil gets soaked into the surrounding skin. You can wash it off after 10 minutes.
- Vicks VapoRub– This may sound a bit unconventional, but Vicks VapoRub can also help in treating fungal nail infections. This is likely due to the presence of substances such as menthol, camphor, and eucalyptus oil in this ointment. These substances can prevent the growth of fungus and help in the treatment of fungal infections.
- Turmeric – This spice has antimicrobial and antifungal properties. You can prepare a paste or an ointment by mixing turmeric with coconut oil or water and applying it to the affected area.
Wrapping It Up
We hope you got an answer to your question regarding “Does vinegar kill fungus?”
Bear in mind that there is little scientific evidence regarding the efficacy of this treatment against fungal infections.
If you do not see the results you are looking for, it could be because of the severity of your condition.
In this case, we suggest you seek help from a foot care specialist or a physician.
You can also consider using vinegar as a supplementary treatment alongside the prescription medication you are required to take.
Make sure you consult your doctor beforehand about this, though.
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