How do I treat Ich?

hfish

New Member
Hi, when treating ich do you raise the temperature of the tank or lower it? I currently have my tank lowered between 71.6-75.2 degrees f. Currently using Waterlife Protozin (I'm in the UK so have to use the white spot treatment available). I have read adding aquarium salt can be helpful too but the fish shop told me not to do this whilst treating the tank. I'm on day 5 out of 6 days of the course of medication. Ich is no better and it's spreading! One fish has already died and the others now have cloudy fins. Is there anything else I can do?

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jpm995

Well Known
Wrong way. You up the temp to about 84 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-14 days. As I understand it that stops their reproductive cycle and they die off.
 

hfish

New Member
Oh ok thanks!

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DanB80TTS

Well Known
Wrong way. You up the temp to about 84 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-14 days. As I understand it that stops their reproductive cycle and they die off.

Incorrect, raising the temperature speeds up the life cycle of white spot/Ich.
Ich can only be killed whilst it's free floating, once it finds a host (is a spot on a fish) it can't be killed until it is back in the free floating stage.

Incresing your temperature above 80f will speed up the life cycle, (I don't remember the exact stages in the cycle) So like jpm995 said, raise the temperature and treat with the ich treatment. If it dissapears sooner than 2 weeks continue to treat as it could still be in the tank. Make sure you remove any carbon from your filter media since it will take the meds out of the water leaving them ineffective.

If you have any invertebrates then you need to relocate them during treatment, as far as I know all ich treatments contain copper which is lethal to inverts. Don't worry, shrimp and snails do not suffer from ich. Once treatment is over and it's clear up, use some activated carbon in your filter to soak up all the medication that will be remaining in the water.

Salt irritates the fish and causes them to produce more slime coat, adding salt means you'd be triggering the fishes natural ability to fight the infection. However not all fish can deal with the salt. I've heard catfish, especially cory cats do not fair well with aquarium salt so I wouldn't go that way. The best way would be to treat as I described above.
 

hfish

New Member
Thanks very much. I've used salt before and they've been ok. Can you use ich treatment as well as salt at the same time? Also the treatment I have is only for a 6 day course as per instructions. I'm worried the course of treatment is not long enough

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Coradee

Resident Scouser
I wouldn't use salt as well as meds, the fish will already be stressed by the Ich & the meds & the salt would be another stressor & may interfere with the meds.
 

hfish

New Member
Ok, thanks very much

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jpm995

Well Known
Incorrect, raising the temperature speeds up the life cycle of white spot/Ich.
Ich can only be killed whilst it's free floating, once it finds a host (is a spot on a fish) it can't be killed until it is back in the free floating stage.

Incresing your temperature above 80f will speed up the life cycle, (I don't remember the exact stages in the cycle) So like @ said, raise the temperature and treat with the ich treatment. If it dissapears sooner than 2 weeks continue to treat as it could still be in the tank. Make sure you remove any carbon from your filter media since it will take the meds out of the water leaving them ineffective.

If you have any invertebrates then you need to relocate them during treatment, as far as I know all ich treatments contain copper which is lethal to inverts. Don't worry, shrimp and snails do not suffer from ich. Once treatment is over and it's clear up, use some activated carbon in your filter to soak up all the medication that will be remaining in the water.

Salt irritates the fish and causes them to produce more slime coat, adding salt means you'd be triggering the fishes natural ability to fight the infection. However not all fish can deal with the salt. I've heard catfish, especially cory cats do not fair well with aquarium salt so I wouldn't go that way. The best way would be to treat as I described above.

This is from the sticky on this thread about ich. It clearly states not to use chems with heat.
"It is not recommended to use the increased heat method along with medications. Choose 1 or the other. I only suggest medications if you are experiencing fish loss."
 

Dave125g

Fishlore Legend
I use heat with salt. Then water change in 48 hours. Do that twice. Then daly water changes for a week, to get the salt level back down
 

DanB80TTS

Well Known
This is from the sticky on this thread about ich. It clearly states not to use chems with heat.
"It is not recommended to use the increased heat method along with medications. Choose 1 or the other. I only suggest medications if you are experiencing fish loss."

Raising the temperature above 80f makes treating with medication far more effective since the ich is forced into free floating stage quickly. I'm not sure why the thread on this forum says not to use both, I myself am not the kind of person to throw chems into any of my tanks. However I have a bottle of Kordon's ich treatment in case ich was to break out and it's something I would certainly use given how fast ich can spread and it's mortality rate.

I apolagise on calling you incorrect, I looked into ich treatment further and it would appear that raising the temperature above 86f can cause reproduction to stop. I would imagine it would be just as stressful on the fish as medication or salt though, when it comes to disease it's probably always going to be a lose, lose, lose situation for the fish.
 

hfish

New Member
Thanks for all the thoughts, I've learned lots! I don't want to increase the tank temp too soon and quickly as thinking that might cause more stress on the fish? As I'm already nearing the end of the Protozin course of treatment, I'm putting the last lot in tonight, will wait 24 hours, then do a water change, carbon back in, salt in and gradually increase the tank temp over the next few days. I'm getting nowhere with this Protozin stuff, this strain must be resistant to it

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jpm995

Well Known
No problem Dan, I'm old school and learned that to avoid ich rather than treat it. Never buy a fish that the lfs just gets, let them hold it for a week, check for scratching or nervous behavior. It always seemed like certain fish like hatchets were prone to it. With my saltwater fish copper based meds were the only thing that worked. Nothing beats a quarantine tank though.
 

DanB80TTS

Well Known
No problem Dan, I'm old school and learned that to avoid ich rather than treat it. Never buy a fish that the lfs just gets, let them hold it for a week, check for scratching or nervous behavior. It always seemed like certain fish like hatchets were prone to it. With my saltwater fish copper based meds were the only thing that worked. Nothing beats a quarantine tank though.

I haven't had it occur in a tank in a long time, I'm always very cautious when buying fish. Your right though, certain fish seen to always come with disease.
 

weiji

Active Member
fish that belong to the hyphessobrycon genus are always in danger to easily get Ich. I am now in the process of trying to control the Ich situation in my tank and very much likely it has got brought into my tank through the bleeding heart tetra I just got...to leave the newly bought fish in a quarantine tank for a week or two is surely a step that should never be skipped and I have just learnt it in a hard way once again!
 

hampalong

Well Known
If you're using Protozin nothing else is required. Just add the doses and carry on as normal. Check your water, because only stressed fish can get Ich. If you don't remove the stressor it can be hard to treat.
 

hfish

New Member
Thanks, unfortunately Protozin has not worked in this instance I'm going to try melafix and pimafix

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hampalong

Well Known
If Protozin hasn't worked, the cause of the stress is still in the tank. Water? Incompatible fish? Is the tank cycled?
 

hfish

New Member
Tested the water with API Master kit. Ph is fine. Only silver dollars in the tank. Yes the tank has cycled but I think the cause of the infection was one day the tank got too warm in the sun. I have now moved my tank further back into the room

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hampalong

Well Known
Dollars can be quite hard to settle. Your call of course, but Melafix and Pimafix are very mild treatments that don't always work at the best of times. I would start another Protozin course.
 

BluMan1914

Well Known
hfish, is there any particular reason why you don't try the heat method? It is very effective.
 

hfish

New Member
Thanks I know what you mean, the herbal treatments do appear to be less effective and efficient but after one SD died within 3 days of the course of protozin but another survived dropsy just through melafix and salt, I'm just giving the herbal stuff a chance. I'm also half dosing the tank with aq salt as well as using the melafix and pimafix. I think I'm starting to panic to be honest. Do you think the combo of these 3 altogether is too much?

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hfish

New Member
@BluMan I think I'm panicking and would prefer to raise temps and use meds! Currently ramped tank up to 29 degrees celsius. Then I want use aq salt, melafix and pimafix - I know it seems a bit extreme but they so poorly and I just want to help them recover quickly and not lose any by not acting sooner

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BluMan1914

Well Known
Not sure how the three different meds will interact with each other. Hopefully some of the more experienced members can weigh in on that.
The only disease that I have ever had was Ich, and that was simply cured by using heat.
 

hampalong

Well Known
I think I might be inclined to do just heat. Put it up over a few days and the dollars will stand it. Are you sure your water is good? Do you keep up with water changes? If it's good water you're adding you can't add too much or too often. Something isn't right if they're getting dropsy and Protozin is killing them. Are you sure your test kits are in-date? Your using liquid test kits, yes?

If there is an issue, even if you kill the Ich they'll probably just get something else.
 

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