Ingrown Toenails: Treatment

We have previously talked about causes, identification and prevention of ingrown toenails, but in this blog we would like to address the treatment of ingrown toenails.

There are several treatment options ranging from home remedies to surgical procedures. Mild cases may be remedied at home by soaking your toes in warm water and applying antibiotic ointment. We do recommend coming in for an appointment if symptoms like pain, redness and swelling do not disappear within 48 hours.

Prolonged symptoms or drainage from the side of the toenail indicates a level of severity that requires professional treatment. Waiting for symptoms to disappear will only increases the risk of infection which comes with a range of additional complications, especially when diabetics are affected.

Professional treatments include, but are not limited to:

  • Lifting the toenail with cotton to ease pressure
  • Wrapping the nail in silk to protect infected areas
  • Trimming the edge of the affected toenail
  • Removal of specific areas of the toenail as preventative measure
  • Prescription of oral antibiotics
  • Removal of the entire infected nail and tissue in serious cases
  • Chemical treatment to permanently prevent ingrown toenails

The final treatment plan depends on a variety of factors, which is why it is crucial to be open and transparent with your podiatrist. Let them know about:

  • The length of time you have suffered from your condition and the pain level over this span of time
  • Your history of ingrown toenails or any other foot-related conditions
  • Home treatments you used or consider using
  • Permanent health conditions like diabetes or being a bleeder
  • Allergies or sensitivities against treatment materials or prescriptions
  • Relevant footwear habits affecting the toes (heels, steel-toe boots, etc.)
  • Hobbies and professions requiring mobility and balance (athletics, roofing, etc.)

Do not wait for the pain to get worse and for the infection to set in. Contact Dr. Smith’s office for an appointment.