You can treat fungal infections with a product you probably already have in your kitchen cupboard. Treating toenail fungus is one of the many uses for baking soda. Not only can it help treat the damaged toenail, baking soda may also keep the damaging fungus from returning. However, consult a doctor before trying this treatment at home.
Make a Baking Soda Paste
Getting rid of your toenail problems can be as easy as making a paste of baking soda mixed with warm water and applying it to your affected toenail. Application of baking soda can prevent or reduce fungal growth, according to a 2012 study published in Mycopathologia. Do this for a few minutes each day and you will soon see results.
Rinse the baking soda mixture away and then dry your feet before putting on your shoes and socks. Your damaged toenail may become loose and ultimately come off, but don't worry: A new, healthy toenail will grow in its place.
Treat Your Shoes
After exercise or long walks, your sneakers remain damp long after you take them off. As fungi thrive in moist, dark environments, your footwear is a breeding ground for microbes, according to the Mayo Clinic. This, in turn, leaves you susceptible to fungal infections every time you place your foot back in your shoe.
Baking soda can help fight these microbes and freshen up your shoes at the same time. Sprinkling a little baking soda in your shoes, or even socks, will help keep your feet dry, preventing fungus from attacking your toenails.
Mix Oil and Powder
Baking soda mixed with tea tree oil, basil oil, sage oil and arrowroot was found to be effective against toenail fungus growth in a 2007 study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition.
Apply the mixture to your feet and toes before putting your shoes and socks on. Any fungal growth on your toenails will be effectively treated as the oils allow for better penetration of the baking soda mixture. The treatment should discourage new fungal growth as well.