Have Part Of The Toenail Removed
Learning how to cut your toenails the right way and avoiding tight-fitting shoes usually prevents ingrown toenails in the future. Some people, however, cant fix the problem on their own.
Unfortunately, their toenails grow in a such a way that they will eventually cause pain.
If this describes your situation, then Dr. Rambacher may want to remove a part of your toenail. After removing part of the toenail, the nail cant grow into your skin.
Dr. Rambacher can even use laser therapy to target highly specific parts of your toenail. If necessary, he can use laser therapy to remove recurring ingrown toenails at their roots.
Apple Cider Vinegar Soak
Apple cider vinegar is considered a folk remedy for a majority of ailments these days. And this includes ingrown nails. Apple cider vinegar is known to have anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and pain-relieving properties.
However, scientific evidence for apple cider vinegar as a remedy to common ailments is limited at best.
You can try to treat an ingrown nail by soaking your affected foot in a bucket or basin of warm water mixed with a ¼ cup of apple cider vinegar. Do this for up to 20 minutes daily.
Remember to always dry your foot thoroughly once you are done with the soaking.
Ingrown Toenail Infection Symptoms And Treatment
Ingrown toenail infection occurs when the corner or edge of your nail grows right into the skin close to the overgrown nail. If there is no infection in the ingrown toenail, you can easily treat it at home. However, you should seek medical attention if the affected skin is pierced already.
Those suffering from certain health conditions, like poor blood circulation or diabetes are at higher risk of developing complications.
In most instances, the culprit toe most of the time is your big toe. The National Health Services stated that the problem affects both the male and the female.
However, the condition is commoner in individuals having sweaty feet, especially teenagers. Toenail thickens with age and this predisposes older people to the condition.
Additionally, Cutting nail incorrectly, irregularly curved toenails, improper footwear, toenail injury, poor posture, improper foot hygiene and genetics are some of the most common conditions leading to the infection.
It is in your best interest to get the condition treated before complications set in.
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When To See A Doctor
Although you can do many things to treat an infected toe at home, its important to understand when you need to seek medical care. Call your doctor or a podiatrist if:
- You are noticing redness, swelling, and/or drainage coming from your toe
- You think you may have a fungal infection and over-the-counter creams havent worked
- You have an infected or ingrown toenail and youre diabetic
- Your toenail infection symptoms dont go away, they worsen, or they keep coming back
You should seek immediate medical attention if you have a fever and notice red streaks on your skin that lead away from the infected area on your toe, as these symptoms indicate a more severe infection.
An infected toenail can impact your daily life, but it doesnt have to. Learning how to treat an infected toe and knowing when to call your doctor can get you back to doing all the activities you love. If youre concerned about an infection in your toe, you should schedule an appointment with a podiatrist before attempting to treat painful symptoms at home.
Other Treatment For An Ingrown Toenail
An ingrown toenail may also be treated by a gutter splinter using slit plastic tubing to keep the nail, and the lateral nail folds apart. These are held in place by using tape or acrylic adhesive. An artificial nail may be sculptured using formable acrylic solution.
Chemical or medical nail avulsion is a painless, slow way to remove damaged nails. As the process destroys the whole nail, it is rarely used for ingrown toenails.
Alternative surgical procedures are described, for example, removal of the surrounding soft tissue and shortening the bone of the distalphalanx.
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Aftercare For Ingrown Toenail Treatment
After your ingrown toenail treatment, your podiatrist will apply the first dressing on the toe/s, and youll be given the following instructions:
- Keep the dressing clean and dry for 48 hours
- After removing the dressing, flush the toe with saline or saltwater and carefully pat it dry
- Apply an antiseptic ointment and use a clean, light dressing over the affected toe
- To manage normal levels of pain, take appropriate doses of an over-the-counter painkiller like paracetamol
Ingrown Toenails Can Cause Pain & Discomfort & May Require Surgery If Not Managed Early On Read Our Guide To The Causes Symptoms & Treatment Options
An ingrown toenail is when the nail grows into the skin on one, or both, sides of the toe. It usually affects the big toe but can affect any toe.
What do ingrown toenails look & feel like?
You may experience one or more of the following symptoms:
It hurts when pressures applied to the toe
The skin surrounding the toe may be red and puffy
Theres bleeding from around the nail
White or yellow discharge is coming from the affected area
What causes ingrown toenails?
Cutting nails too short, or trimming edges. This encourages the nail to grow into the skin
Badly fitting footwear, sock or tights. These press toenails into the surrounding skin
Hot and sweaty feet. This softens the skin of your feet, making it easier for toenails to cut into skin
A toe injury. Stubbing, or crushing, your toe can lead to an ingrown toenail
Fungal nail infections. These can thicken or widen toenails
How can I treat my ingrown toenail?
Ingrown toenails can be managed by:
Soaking your foot in warm water three or four times a day for a few days, to help soften the skin around the toe
Keeping your feet clean by washing them daily
Changing socks and tights regularly
Only wearing comfortable footwear and hosiery
Taking paracetamol or ibuprofen to help relieve any painSpeak to your pharmacist about treatment options they can also advise you if there appears to be an infection.
How to prevent ingrown toenails
Cut your toenails straight across the top, and not too short
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What Are The Symptoms Of An Ingrown Toenail
Typical symptoms include:
- a red and painful edge of the skin around your toenail
- pain in that area when wearing shoes due to pressure on your toe
- a raised area along the toenail edge from an overgrowth of skin.
If your ingrown toenail gets infected, your toe can become more swollen and the pain and redness can get worse, and sometimes blood or pus can be seen.
Home Care: Keep It Simple
If your symptoms are minor and you don’t have a complicating medical condition such as diabetes, you can start at home with conservative measures.
Soak the foot in lukewarm water two or three times a day for 15 minutes . You can add Epsom salts if you wish, although there’s no scientific evidence that this will improve pain relief or healing. Massage the skin at the side of the toenail , gently pushing it away from the nail. After each soak, dry your foot thoroughly. Wear sandals or other low-heeled open-toed shoes whenever possible. When you wear close-toed shoes, make sure the toe box allows room for the toes to move freely. When the toenail grows out, cut it across in a line that mimics the curving line of the toe tip do not round the corners down.
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When Should You See Your Babys Healthcare Provider
You should see your babyâs healthcare provider if your babyâs ingrown toenail gets infected. If the toenail is red, swollen, tender to the touch, and seem to be draining pus, itâs most likely infected.
Your babyâs healthcare provider may remove the ingrown part of your babyâs nail so that it can heal easily and may prescribe an antibiotic to treat the infection.
If your baby develops a fever, if the redness seems to spread beyond the toe, and if he doesnât improve from at-home treatment after a week, contact your babyâs provider immediately.
Destruction Of The Matrix
Although phenol has antiseptic and anesthetic properties, it may cause tissue damage and possibly infection, delaying postoperative healing.20 The best evidence demonstrates that partial nail avulsion followed by phenolization or direct surgical excision of the nail matrix are equally effective in the treatment of ingrown toenails.16 Another study found that partial nail avulsion with phenolization yielded better results than partial avulsion with nail matrix excision.21 In the latter study, local antibiotics did not reduce the risk of infection or recurrence of the ingrown toenail, and phenolization did not increase the risk of infection more than matrix excision.21 A Cochrane systematic review found that partial nail avulsion combined with phenolization is more effective at preventing symptomatic recurrence than surgical excision without phenolization, but has a slightly increased risk of postoperative infection.8 Trials evaluating different treatment methodologies have not adequately assessed patient satisfaction because follow-up time in each trial was less than six months, which is not an adequate time period to measure symptomatic recurrence. Although phenolization may be the most appropriate and beneficial treatment for most patients, risks and benefits should be discussed with each patient.
Contact Doctor During Office Hours
- Can’t locate and free up corner of toenail
- After using Care Advice more than 2 days, pus discharge not gone
- After using Care Advice more than 3 days, still hard to walk
- After using Care Advice more than 7 days, not improved
- After using Care Advice more than 14 days, not gone
- Ingrown toenails are a frequent problem
- You have other questions or concerns
How Is An Ingrown Toenail Treated
Treatment of an ingrown toenail consists of self-care measures and may involve antibiotics or minor surgery.
Your GP will first recommend self-care measures to help relieve your symptoms, such as:
- soaking your foot in warm water 3 to 4 times a day for a few days this will help soften the skin around your toe and stop your nail growing into it
- adding a mild antiseptic to the soaking water or adding cider vinegar
- keeping your foot dry at other times
- wearing well-fitting and comfortable shoes
- taking pain relief medicines such as paracetamol or ibuprofen to relieve your pain check with your GP or pharmacist whether you can take them
- not cutting or picking at your toenail instead allowing it to grow out so it is easier to cut it straight across
- if pus can be seen, swabbing that area with antiseptic or methylated spirit to clear away the pus.
There are many devices available from your pharmacy or online. These are designed to ease pressure on the affected toe. They are inexpensive.If your symptoms dont improve after self-care measures, or if your ingrown toenail is infected, your GP may prescribe antibiotics. Any material oozing from that area may be tested in the laboratory to help your GP prescribe the correct antibiotic.Your GP or podiatrist may also perform minor surgery to remove your whole nail or cut away part of your nail. This procedure can be done in their consulting room using local anaesthetic. Discuss these options with your GP.
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Pack The Area With Dental Floss Or Cotton
According to the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, placing cotton under your nail may increase pain and allow harmful bacteria to thrive. Soaking the cotton or floss in alcohol before application may help reduce this risk.
Ingrown Toenail Infections Risks
MRSA infections can spread into the bone, requiring weeks of intravenous antibiotics and sometimes surgery. Its very important to treat infected ingrown toenails quickly in order to avoid this complication.
Any condition that reduces blood flow or causes nerve damage to the feet can also inhibit healing. This can make infections more likely and harder to treat.
Complications resulting from hard-to-treat infections can include gangrene. This complication typically requires surgery to remove dead or dying tissue.
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Approach To The Patient
Surgical Approach to the Ingrown Toenail
Obtain surgical consent after explaining to the patient the risks, benefits, and alternatives. Place the patient in a supine or seated position with the affected toe and foot hanging off the end of the table.
Prepare the affected toe with standard povidone iodine solution. Use lidocaine or bupivacaine without epinephrine for local anesthesia in a digital block fashion.
Use a tourniquet or rubber band around the toe to assist in hemostasis for only a short duration use with caution in patients with known peripheral vascular disease or diabetes .
Identify the lateral 20 to 25 percent of the ingrown nail as the site of the partial lateral nail avulsion. Use a nail elevator under the nail to separate it from the nail bed .
Use a nail splitter to cut from the distal end of the toenail straight back toward the cuticle beneath the nail fold .
Grasp the avulsed lateral nail fragment with a hemostat down to just past the cuticle. Remove it by twisting the avulsed nail outward toward the lateral nail fold while pulling in a straight direction toward the end of the toe. Ensure that the entire nail fragment and flat edge of the nail bed is retrieved to prevent formation of a nail spicule and the potential for recurrence of an ingrown nail.
After surgery, apply a dressing of antibiotic ointment , 4 X 4 gauze, tube gauze, and paper tape, ensuring a comfortable bandage .
What Is The Outlook For Someone With An Ingrown Toenail
Most of the time, an ingrown toenail is not a serious health problem. Ingrown toenail treatment usually works. The ingrown toenail wont grow back if you practice good foot care.
You may need regular foot care exams if you have a condition that causes foot problems, such as nerve damage or diabetes.
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When To See Your Doctor
Make an appointment with your primary care doctor or a podiatrist if you have diabetes and if the redness, swelling, and other symptoms don’t go away with home treatment. See your doctor right away if:
- You have a fever or chills
- You notice red streaks on the skin leading away from the infected area
- Your joints or muscles hurt
Your doctor will examine your toe. You might need tests to find out what type of bacteria or fungus caused the infection.
Get regular checkups from your podiatrist if you have diabetes, so you can find infections and other problems early. See the doctor more often if you have any known foot problems, like an ingrown toenail.
What Causes An Infected Toenail
Your toenail can become infected in a number of ways, including fungal infections or even calluses caused by your shoes. One of the most common types of toenail infections is an ingrown toenail. If your toenail is ingrown, it means the edges of your toenail start to grow into the skin next to your toenail. Ingrown toenails can be red and inflamed, sore, and may even be filled with pus.
The most common causes of an ingrown toenails include:
- Cutting your toenail too short or too long
- Toenail injury
- Curved toenails
- Improper footwear that puts pressure on your big toes
- Cutting your toenail improperly
- Certain sports and activities like dance, soccer, and skiing
- Poor foot hygiene
Infections on your toes may be common if you have diabetes or similar conditions that cause poor circulation or a weakened immune system. Diabetics should check their feet often and have regular appointments with a podiatrist because they may not feel the pain of a toe infection until the problem is severe.
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of An Ingrown Toenail
Ingrown toenails can be classified into three stages according to severity.
- End of the toe becomes reddened with mild swelling
- May feel warm and be painful to touch
- No pus or drainage
- Toe becomes increasingly red, swollen and painful
- May be white or yellow coloured pus or drainage from the area
- Infection may have developed
- Symptoms of redness, swelling and pain are increased
- Granulation tissue forms and adds to the swelling and discharge of pus
- Lateral nail-fold hypertrophy
- More severe infection with fever may follow
Dont Suffer Let A Professional Podiatrist Help You
If youre in Los Angeles, California and want a professional podiatrist to help with your condition then contact Wound Institute of America, one of the top wound care clinics in California. If youre not in Los Angeles and want a recommendation on treatment in your area, contact us and we will provide the best recommended clinic in your area for treatment. Ingrown toenails are treatable and may be prevented with proper care.
Can I Prevent Ingrown Toenails If I Already Have One What Do I Do
Before we dive into specific products, heres some advice if you find youre regularly developing ingrown toenails:
And that pretty much covers the basics. Now, check out a few products below that can help you get rid of ingrown toenails. We based our picks on reviews, our own experiences and advice from Cunha, so you can trust theyll work well for you.