What To Do If You Have An Ingrown Toenail

An ingrown toenail occurs when one or both of the corners of your toenail start growing into your toe, rather than continuing to grow out of the nailbed as it is supposed to. This condition can lead to a lot of pain and infection. If you have an ingrown toenail, there are some home remedies you can try until you are able to get in to see the podiatrist. This article will help you cope with the pain and treat the issue until you can get in for treatment.

Wear loose shoes

When you have an ingrown toenail, wearing shoes that fit tight around the toe area will cause more pressure on the affected toe. This can lead to a lot more pain and inflammation. You want to wear as loose of shoes as you can and keep them off when possible. You should also avoid high-heeled shoes because they put a lot of pressure directly on your toes.

Keep your foot clean

When a toenail starts to grow in your toe, it causes an opening in the skin that's highly susceptible to infection. For this reason, it is important for you to keep your foot as clean and dry as possible. Wash your foot with soap and warm water several times a day and dry it with a clean towel. Try to wash each time you get out of your shoes. This way, sweat and other bacteria won't sit on the area for lengths of time.

Soak your foot in Epsom salt

Soaking your foot in warm water and Epsom salt will help with inflammation and draw out some of the infection if infection is present. You can fill a foot massage tub with warm water and Epsom salt to soak your foot while the massaging effect helps to further soothe it. Soaking your foot in this manner will also help soften your toenail so you may be able to pull up the affected area and successfully clip it.

Take an anti-inflammatory

You can take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory for both the pain of the affected toenail and the inflammation.

When to seek immediate medical treatment

If you are in extreme pain, you notice a yellow or green discharge or it gets red and swollen, then you should go to urgent care if you aren't able to get in to see your doctor or podiatrist right away. The urgent care physician will be able to trim the ingrown toenail out and start you on a round of antibiotics to treat the infection.

For professional urgent care, visit a clinic such as West Ocean City Injury & Illness Center.