There Are a Number of Symptoms of Ingrown Toenails and These Often Occur in Stages

In the early stage, you may notice the skin near the affected toenail feels tender or swollen. This can lead to pain at the affected spot when pressure is applied or felt. You may also notice fluid buildup near the affected spot.

These symptoms will give way to full-blown infection if left untreated.

  • At this point, the toenail will become extremely painful.
  • You will notice inflammation and reddish discoloration as well as bleeding and pus formation.

Important – If infection sets in, consult with a professional foot and ankle specialist as soon as possible to treat the infection and prevent further damage.

It is important to note that an infection in the toenail can lead to infection in the toe bone. In addition, an infected toenail can lead to other complications such as open sores, foot ulcers or even tissue decay at the site of the infection. 

If the ingrown toenail is in the early stages, try the following:

  • Wash your feet twice a day to keep the area clean.
  • Soak your feet in warm water for 15-20 minutes.
  • Do this 4-5 times in a day.
  • Using a cotton ball, gently push away the skin from the toenail edge.
  • When you’re not washing or soaking, make sure you keep the feet dry at all other times.
  • On top of this, you can try lifting the toenail that’s digging into the skin by using a cotton gauze or a piece of dental floss – this can help elevate the toenail and allow it to grow naturally.
  • For the pain, you can use an OTC medication.

Continue with the home remedies for a few days or a week. If, however, you notice the pain is becoming worse or if you suspect the toenail is infected, please consult a podiatrist.

If the Toenail Is Infected, Home Remedies Will Not Work and You Will Need Medical Treatment

Depending on the severity of your condition, your doctor may remove a portion of the nail in a procedure known as Wedge Resection. You will be given a local anesthetic and the doctor will drain the infection before removing a portion of the nail.

A matrixectomy is performed to completely and permanently remove the offending ingrown toenail. The nail matrix, or the tissue under the nail, will then be covered with a chemical to prevent it from growing. This procedure is used for chronic conditions, repeat ingrown toenails, and toenail plate deformity. It is a great way to solve the repeating problem for people. Again, the procedure will be performed under local anesthesia.

  1. Trim or cut your toenails following your unique anatomy to prevent the edges from digging into the skin.
  2. Don’t cut your toenails too short.
  3. Practice good hygiene to prevent infections.
  4. Avoid wearing tight shoes and socks.
  5. If you have abnormally curved nails or if you have very thick nails, set up a consult with a podiatrist for more information.

Are You Or A Family Member Suffering From Ingrown Toenails In The Caldwell Or Meridian, Idaho Area?

If you're suffering from ingrown toenails you owe it to yourself to speak with our experienced podiatrists as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact us online or call our office directly at 208.855.5955 to schedule your appointment. We service all areas surrounding Meridian, Idaho as well as all areas in the Caldwell, Idaho area. We look forward to helping you!

Dr. P. Roman Burk
Providing experienced private practice podiatry services in the Caldwell and Meridian, ID area since 2007.