Estimated reading time: 7 minutes
Not only is it painful, but an ingrown toenail can lead to inflammation. We reveal how you should deal with this problem and how you can prevent it in the future.
Admittedly, the pedicure is one of the less popular activities for most of us. It isn’t easy to get to your toes, and in general, the feet are not exactly the favorite parts of the body for many. But it doesn’t help because our toenails have to be trimmed regularly. However, it can quickly happen that you cut them too short – an ingrown nail, called Unguis incarnatus in medical jargon, is often the result.
How Do Ingrown Toenails Develop?
A widespread cause is the wrong pedicure technique: If nails are not cut straight but oval, the cut on the sides may be too deep. The toenail grows into the nail bed or the adjacent nail fold (a crescent-shaped skin fold, also known as a nail or nail fold).
Another cause of ingrowth, however, can also be an uncomfortable shoe, that is, a shoe that is too tight. If the pressure between the skin and toenails is permanently too high, the risk of an ingrown nail is increased. This painful growth can quickly occur if the feet sweat heavily and the skin around the nail is softening.
Apart from that, ingrown toenails can also be chronically caused and, in this case, are often passed on. The problem usually occurs in people with diabetes and people with vascular diseases or athlete’s feet.
How To Recognize An Ingrown Nail
The problem usually occurs on the two big toes and affects younger people as well as older people. The ingrown nail is first noticeable through local pain – if there is inflammation, a reddish, warm-to-feel swelling can also be seen. Bleeding and leakage of pus may also occur as the stage progresses.
These Home Remedies Will Help With The Treatment
If your toenail has not grown too far and has not yet caused inflammation, foot baths can alleviate the discomfort. These soften the tissue, and you can then take better care of your toe. To do this, fill a large bowl with lukewarm water and, if necessary, add some Epsom salt (alternatively: anti-inflammatory chamomile flowers) due to its pain-relieving and decongestant properties. Soak your affected foot in it for about 15 minutes twice a day.
Then massage your toe and slide the nail fold away from the ingrown nail. Then, with the help of tweezers, stick a tiny piece of a cotton ball under the corner of the nail and leave a little bit sticking out so that you can easily replace the part – with a bit of patience, the nail can grow beyond the skin. If you already notice a slight inflammation, treat the affected toe additionally with an iodine or traction ointment, and apply a bandage after application.
When To See A Doctor?
If you have diabetes or suffer from vascular disease, treatment yourself is not advisable. Instead, consult a doctor, medical podiatrist, or podiatrist directly. It is important to avoid possible nerve damage. That being said, it is also advisable to see an expert if there has been no improvement within a week. Or if there is severe swelling and pus. Since ingrown toenails are very susceptible to infection, they should also be kept extra clean.
If there is already an inflammation or if the symptoms do not go away (or if they keep recurring), in the worst-case scenario, an operation may be necessary. Then either only the inflamed tissue is removed, which gives the nail more space (nail wall resection), or during the surgical procedure, the ingrown nail is cut away at the side edge (wedge resection). In severe cases, a nail wedge excision (Emmert plastic) can be performed, in which the affected nail area is removed down to the growth zone/root and the nail bed is reduced in size. The toenail grows so narrower.
Tips To Prevent Ingrown Toenail
If you are not dealing with a chronic or inherited problem, you can avoid ingrowth and possibly necessary surgery, especially with the proper foot care and suitable shoes :
- You should always cut your toenails straight or, even better, clip them with a special toenail clipper. This way, no sharp edges are left behind.
- It is best to trim your toenails every two to three weeks. Be careful not to cause injury.
- Avoid too-tight shoes and excessive strain on the toes.
- For a change, run barefoot more often or at least treat yourself to breathable shoes.
- Regularly cream your feet with an ointment containing urea. This will keep your skin soft and better prevent nail bed inflammation.
Best Ingrown Toenail Tools & Treatments
CurveCorrect Ingrown Toenail Home Treatment | Ingrown toenail correction kit, includes ten standard toenail braces
About this item
- FAST INGROWN TOENAIL RELIEF – CurveCorrect is a nail brace that corrects the curve of your nail. By lifting each side of the nail its pressure against the toe is eliminated. Most users experience relief in 1-2 days and full correction of the nail by 4 weeks.
- A UNIQUE TREATMENT – Known medically as orthonyxia, independent tests have shown this process has a low recurrence rate similar to surgery. Unlike surgery CurveCorrect can actually change the shape of your nail – the root cause of ingrown toenail pain. No cutting. No recovery. Lower cost.
- 90 DAY RETURNS – Use CurveCorrect for up to 90 days. Return it if you’re unhappy for any reason.
- NAIL BRACE TENSION LEVEL – .140 (for the nail on the first toe of most adults 18+ years. Smaller nails, thin nails, highly curved nails and children’s nails will require a different brace)
- TRUSTED COMPANY – CurveCorrect pioneered nail bracing for personal use. Specializing in ingrown toenail treatment since 2008, no one has our level of experience. Proudly developed and manufactured in the USA.
Better Nail – Maximum Strength 25% Solution for Anti Fungal Nail Support | Nail Restoring Solution for Toenail & Fingernail Fungus | .5oz or 15ml
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