Treating Betta Diseases

Guide to curing bettas with diseases

  1. Fanatic
    Hello :) I wanted to write this up for everyone that has concerns or questions about treating diseases in bettas, and what to do in order to avoid them.
    Well, I am glad you've found my article! I have included most of the most common problems with bettas, and my recommended methods to follow in order to heal them.

    Torn Fins
    If you have a betta with torn fins, it's not very difficult to heal, often harmless to the health of the betta, it just gets in the way of enjoying the look of their fins.
    Here's the best way to go about treating it!

    Water: I suggest that you first start by doing large frequent water changes to heal torn fins, as it's nature's natural healing power for most small cases like this, and will do wonders on any fish :)
    I usually do daily water changes, and only remove about a quarter of the total volume, but if you have a smaller tank, then it may be best to do larger water changes.

    Tannins: I second this idea, it's very helpful! :) If you have any type of appropriate leaves to use in aquariums, I suggest sticking some into your betta tank!
    They will release tannins into your water, which the tannins are usually very effective on healing smaller problematic sicknesses and diseases. Tannins also make the water darker which promotes them to be more active and relaxed, they aren't changed in any way by the tannins.

    Fin Rot
    Bettas can contract a disease called fin rot, which is a problem of which a bacterial infection gnaws away on vulnerable fins, and destroys them if no action is taken.
    Fin rot is usually caused by poor water quality, which can be turned around if better routine maintenance is performed.

    Water: Again, this is the best way to go about treating it! I suggest doing daily water changes in the largest amounts that you can do.
    I would thoroughly vacuum the tank water, and remove any waste in the substrate. If you have a cycled tank, that's the best way to keep the water quality up, but you must be doing weekly water changes as your normal routine.

    Tannins: You can also use tannins to cure this disease in bettas, it'll do wonders on your fish! :)

    Bloating
    Sometimes, if you overfeed your fish it can react to that by way of bloating, which is swelling in the stomach area.
    It's usually very easy to treat and can be highly preventable in most cases. Here's my favorite way of curing bloated bettas.

    Baths: I suggest doing some Epsom Salt baths, which can help bloating greatly.
    Using these salts are similar to the reasons a human would use them to relieve a swollen area on their body or to remove toxins from inside the skin. Epsom Salts remove moisture from any internal living body.

    Here's a helpful resource that I wrote describing the proper methods for giving a betta an Epsom Salt bath :)
    Betta Epsom Bath

    Dropsy
    This is often a fatal disease for most bettas, but not always! It is caused by a weakened immune system and allowing the bacteria to predate on the fish, infecting it with this problem known as dropsy.
    It's not entirely the easiest to cure, but if caught early enough it should be manageable.

    Water: Do a large frequent water change on your tank, and if you have other tank mates, please move the betta to a separate tank that has both a filter and heater.
    You will need to remove as much water as possible and then use an applicable medication to cure this disease.

    Medications: I recommend using Maracyn Two for dropsy, it has a good effect on the infection, and it should clear up if used correctly.
    I haven't had to use medications before, because my bettas never were able to fight off this disease. I also knew nothing about this problem and had no idea how to treat it when I first experienced it.

    Epsom Bath: Again, I do recommend doing a bath with Epsom Salt, as this is the best time for it to do its job on removing toxins from the body, which often come with dropsy.
    Here is the helpful guide in case you need it :)

    Betta Epsom Bath

    Columnaris
    This is a strange fungal infection that can occur on any fish, doesn't matter the type.
    It's often a fuzzy white substance that can appear anywhere on the head, or near the mouth.

    Medications: I would advise most keepers experiencing a betta that has columnaris to use medications such as Furan 2 or Kanamycin, which can help aid in curing this infection.
    If you want to try a medicated food, then my choice would be to use any type of betta food that is medicated with an oxytetracycline drug, it's a treatment for internal infections as well.

    Popeye
    This is a common disease in which one or both of the eyes become swollen or look popped out. It's not difficult to treat if done properly and is not fatal once treated.
    You will need to use medications for this, but water quality also plays a giant part in curing it.

    Water: You should clean most of the water volume, and continue doing so until you see improvement, alongside if you chose to use a medication. Water quality is vital to ridding of bacterial infections, and possibilities of outbursts.

    Medications: Popeye is often treated with Seachem KanaPlex, that is my recommendation and preference when treating this infection.
    It should be highly effective on this and will help treat it.

    Okay, so I think I have covered most bacterial and fungal infections, along with diseases!
    I hope that you don't have to deal with any of these, but if you do, it's okay! Anything can happen, and most of the time, it's unexpected :)

Recent Reviews

  1. OneLittleBubble
    OneLittleBubble
    3/5,
    Nice info, but some parts are mistaken; like "dropsy is a fatal disease". Dropsy is not a disease, dropsy is a symptom caused by many things and is usually not curable for it means kidney failure most of the time. Overall this is a good article for beginners that are getting into the hobby. Good job.
  2. CanadianFishFan
    CanadianFishFan
    3/5,
    Good info but some parts missing. Hopefully this helps others out there!
  3. D
    DutchAquarium
    3/5,
    Overall, again a good basic explanation of various betta diseases. However, their are some minor problems. Firstly, popeye isn't a disease but actually a secondary infection similar to dropsy. I would of also of like to here what each of these infections are. A disease name and then matched to a bottel isn't understanding what your fighting or what the fish is going through. For example, mentioning that columnaris is a gram negative infection. this is going to help people know what their looking for instead of just a bottel with a disease name on it. I also wrote a response about salt usage in your other article. To some it up, 50 years ago, salt was the only thing to treat fish with. Now, we know that salt is a myth and rather harmful to your fish and especially too bettas even though many people still use it.
    1. Fanatic
      Author's Response
      Again, thanks for the review. I would like to mention that I only included Popeye because it is an illness, and I did mention that it was an infection. I titled the article Betta Diseases because more of the categories were diseases, not infections. Thanks again.




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