What is a fungal infection?
Several fungi thrive on the skin but don’t cause any harm. However, there are certain factors that might cause an overgrowth of the fungi leading to fungal infections.
Fungal infections are caused due to the invasion of a single or multiple fungus species in the body tissues. In fact, fungal infections are categorized by the type of fungus, the body part it affects, the severity of the condition, and the form taken by the fungus.
Sometimes poor hygiene, weak immune system, skin injury, etc. are also responsible for fungal infections. The severity of the infection varies from one individual to another.
Some common types of such fungal infections we often hear of include jock itch, athlete’s foot, ringworm, tinea versicolor, barbers itch, oral thrush, vaginal yeast infection, etc. If left unattended, such fungal infections can spread to a wider area of the skin.
So, proper immediate action and medical assistance must be taken to make sure that the severity of the fungal infection is controlled. Also, a few home remedies could help you deal with such fungal infections.
Common throughout much of the natural world, fungal infections occur when an invading harmful fungus takes over an area of the body and our immune system succumbs to it.
Since these microbes are capable of thriving in the air, soil, water, and plants, the infection can be acquired from almost anywhere. Some fungi live naturally in the human body, the helpful microbes.
But when damaging fungi impact the body, they can be difficult to kill. Worse still, they might even re-infect the person trying to get better.
Location of fungal infections
People, whether on antibiotics or with a compromised immune system or any person, in general, can be at risk of getting infected.
Though quite common in humans, they are usually not very serious and can be treated quickly and correctly.
However, it is important to pay heed to it. For example – infections like aspergillosis can adversely affect the anatomy of the lungs, fearing fungus spread to other vital organs. Surprisingly, most types of these infections can be annihilated by resorting to simple home remedies.
Prevention of Fungal infection
- Although this article does deal with the curing of fungal infections, however, an act or two of deterrence goes a long way in avoiding them completely.
- This is perhaps the most important of all the tips.
- Moisture is the breeding ground for most types of fungus.
- Keep your body dry. Toe, underarms, pubic and anal areas must be kept moisture-free…
- Stay clean.
- Use fresh and clean clothes every day.
- Unwashed and used stuff shouldn’t be worn.
- Do not use others’ accessories.
- Girls generally love trying shades and other fashion items from their friends. Avoid it.
4. If you are already suffering from an infection in an area, keep it clean and stay away from others.
- You may pass it on to others or end up infecting another place in your body.
- Keep your feet clean & neats.
- Change socks daily wear only cotton socks, Wear shoes that “breathe” like leather, and feel comfortable rather than plastic.
- Stop wearing old shoe’s slipper’s and sneaker’s
- Make sure shoes are not too tight.
- Do not share footwear with others.
- Regularly apply anti-fungal creams when you diagnose the early stage of fungal infection.
How to cure fungal infection on the skin naturally home remedies
Turmeric is considered an incredible kitchen ingredient that is considered effective in dealing with fungal infections. It has antiseptic, antifungal, and antibiotic compounds.
Turmeric helps promote faster recovery from infections and even avoids the recurrence of any such fungal infections.
Make turmeric paste using water and apply it topically on the affected area as it helps inhibit the growth of fungi.
You may even use balms that contain turmeric extract or powder to get rid of any such fungal infections. Add a pinch of turmeric to a glass of warm milk and consume it regularly for improving your immune health (1).
The extracts found in the leaves of Indian lilac possess antifungal activity. Few studies have revealed that compounds nimbidol and gedunin found in the leaves of Indian lilac help control the fungi growth which is the reason behind fungal infections such as athlete’s foot, ringworm, and candidiasis.
Applying the oil prepared using the leaves of Indian lilac helps deal with jock itch. You may even use lotions, powders, and paste prepared using the leaves of Indian lilac topically on the affected area to get rid of the fungal infections (2).
Tea Tree Oil:
Tea tree oil is known for its antifungal compounds and helps deal with fungal infections effectively. It helps clear toenail fungus, jock itch, ringworm, athlete’s foot, etc.
All you have to do is dilute tea tree oil with any carrier oil and apply it topically on the affected area.
You may even add a few drops of tea tree oil to the warm water you bathe. Soak your body or the affected area for a few minutes. This remedy works effectively in warding off any such fungal infections (3).
Apple Cider Vinegar:
Apple cider vinegar works amazingly in dealing with fungal infections. It can be consumed orally or applied topically to get rid of the fungal infections on the toes and nails.
Add a tbsp. of ACV in a glass of water and consume it regularly. You can apply it directly to the affected area to control the fungal growth.
ACV seeps into the nails and pores and starts killing the fungi responsible for fungal infections on the toes and nails (4).
Plain and unsweetened yogurt that contains live cultures helps deal with fungal infections such as mouth thrush and vaginal yeast infection. Consuming probiotic-rich yogurt helps control the growth of Candida Albicans.
Apply plain yogurt directly to the affected area and wash off after 30minutes. In the case of vaginal infection, dip a tampon in yogurt and place it in the vagina for an hour. Wash off with lukewarm water. You can also include plain yogurt in your regular diet for best results (5).
Garlic has potent antifungal properties and helps deal with fungal infections such as ringworm, athlete’s foot, vaginitis, thrush, candida infections, cystitis, etc.
Consume two fresh garlic cloves daily in the morning to strengthen your immune health and doing so can protect your body from several bacterial and fungal infections.
You may even apply garlic oil to the affected area to get rid of the fungal infection. Garlic supplements are also effective in warding off fungal infections (6).
Coconut oil works effectively in warding off several fungal infections. It can be used topically or can be consumed for the best results. The lauric acid found in coconut oil works effectively in combating viral, bacterial, and several fungal infections.
Consume around 1-3tbsp of coconut oil along with your meal. For topical application, apply 1tsp of coconut oil directly on the affected area. Follow the same 5-10times every day for best results (7).
Research studies have proved that olive oil and olive leaf have compounds that help fight fungal infections effectively. Topical application of olive oil on the affected area helps inhibit the growth of the fungi and following this remedy regularly helps ward off several fungal skin infections (8).
Baking soda works effectively in fighting fungal infections, particularly athlete’s foot and ringworm. The compounds found in baking soda create an acidic environment where the fungi can’t thrive and this alkalizing property of baking soda helps ward off fungal infections.
You can topically apply it to the affected area and wash it off after 30minutes. Alternatively, make baking soda paste with water and apply it to the affected area for 30minutes before rinsing off with warm water (9).
Soaking your foot in Epsom salts is an amazing remedy to get rid of fungal infections such as athlete’s foot and toenail fungus.
Add a half cup of Epsom salt to a tub filled with warm water. Soak your feet as long as you want. The salt draws out the infection and even helps soothe your aching feet (10).
Hydrogen peroxide works effectively in killing the fungi responsible for athlete’s foot and other fungal infections. Add a cup of hydrogen peroxide to a tub filled with warm water. Soak your foot as long as you want.
You may even get rid of nail fungus by soaking your fingernails in hydrogen peroxide for 15minutes a day. Clean off and pat dry. Follow this remedy until the fungus is gone completely (11).
Probiotic homemade supplements are probably the most natural solution to yeast infection. Healthy foods rich in probiotics, plain yogurt for instance, which consists of bacteria that line your digestive tract and help your body’s ability to absorb vital nutrients and combat infection, can do wonders when topically applied on the affected area.
The living organisms that essentially create yogurt during fermentation are the Lactobacillus strains that work as a disinfectant. Foods like curd and yogurt are true superfoods having multiple health benefits.
Probiotic supplements are an effective treatment for vaginal yeast infection as they restore the balance of bacteria and yeast in the vagina. They can be taken orally or inserted vaginally.
Various types of oil have proven to be a fruitful solution to such infection. Coconut oil, oregano oil, and tea oil are the most preferred ones. However, essential oils should be mixed with carrier oils before use and never applied directly to the skin.
Oil of oregano made from the wild oregano contains two potent antifungals, namely, thymol and carvacrol.
Using wild oregano oil was shown to halt or inhibit the growth of Candida albicans yeast, a common causative of vaginal infection.
Tea tree oil, long lauded for its antifungal properties, also kills a range of yeasts and fungi. It was a preferred plant for home gardens in ancient times.
Though extreme caution must be taken when using tea tree oil, given that it’s a skin irritant and many are sensitive to it.
Coconut oil, on the other hand, works effectively as a carrier oil and has antifungal properties as well due to the presence of medium-chain fatty acids.
Garlic is a known antifungal and antibiotic. Fungal infections found under the nail bed, which is hard to reach can be applied crushed garlic in the form of a paste. It is the best treatment.
Also, an antibiotic helps to speed up the recovery process as a bonus. Women have experienced relief from a yeast infection, by placing a garlic clove, threaded with a string, into the vagina overnight.
One might be careful, however, since people with sensitive skin may experience burning and even skin damage.
VINEGAR AND BORIC ACID
Vinegar, apple cider vinegar (that is naturally high in phosphorus, magnesium, and calcium) specifically, help in decimating infections and simultaneously prevents them from spreading, decreasing the recovery time. It can thus be included in our diet.
Boric acid performs similar functions. Vaginal boric acid capsules, for example, work for women with a yeast infection. They are particularly useful for women with recurrent infections.
Topically applied boric acid, along with the antifungal flucytosine, successfully treats approximately 70 percent of women.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a dosage of 600 mg of boric acid in a capsule inserted vaginally once a day for 14 days is highly effective. However, one might consult with a doctor before purchasing the same.
Not only a combatant of urinary tract infections, but it is also effective against fungal growth conditions like yeast infections as well.
Cranberry juice makes it to almost every immunity-boosting drinks list on the internet these days. Cranberry juice contains a substance that helps stop microbes from sticking to mucous membranes.
Also, it is a controller of the pH levels of urine, which further helps to prevent fungal growth. Antifungal treatments in the form of creams or pessaries can be purchased over the counter without a prescription to treat yeast infections.
Pharmacies, drugstores, and grocery stores all provide these, depending on the product, the treatment may be for external or internal use and treat the infection.
Internally applied treatments have been shown to cure more than 80 percent of vaginal yeast infections. These contain powerful antifungals called azoles.
Caution, however, suggests that certain classes of vulnerable patients like pregnant women, those suffering a recurrent infection, sexually transmitted diseases people or who are unsure if their symptoms are caused by a yeast infection and are at higher risk of suffering additional collateral damage.
They must consult their doctors in priority in case of such infections. Either way, fungal infection can be simplistically tackled with little effort.