Nail fungus occurs when fungus forms beneath the nail. While it can affect both the fingers and toes, it is much more common on toes due to the regular warm, moist environments they are in. Nail fungus infections should be taken care of immediately as the infection can spread to other parts of the body. Nail fungus starts out as a small discoloration under the tip of the nail. As it progresses, the entire nail becomes discolored and may start to crumble along the edges. If caught early enough, nail fungus can successfully be treated at home with nothing more than baking soda and water.

Things You'll Need

Wash your hands with hand soap and warm water. Pat your hands dry with a clean towel after they are clean.

Mix two parts baking soda to one part water in a small dish. In most cases, a tablespoon of water mixed with two tablespoons of baking soda is plenty. Mix them together until they make a paste. Use water that is about room temperature.

Cover the entire nail with the paste using a cotton swab or small paintbrush, and let it sit for 10 minutes. Do your best to get it beneath and along the sides of the nail.

Rinse the paste off and pat the nail dry. Repeat two times per day until the fungus dies. You can tell the fungus is dead when the nail turns to its normal color and thickness. The time it takes for this to occur can be anywhere from a few days to two weeks. Do not worry if the nail falls off, as this is normal when treating nail fungus.


  • Baking soda is very inexpensive and non-toxic, and it has no side effects.

References and Resources

Mayo Clinic