Home Remedies for Ingrown Toenails

by Judy Baldinger

Do Home Remedies Work for Ingrown Toenails?
How effective are home remedies for Ingrown Toenails?

You’re in agony.

Each step is torture.

It Recurs.

It often gets infected.

You may have even received treatment,

But it keeps coming back.

You’ve tried wearing different shoes.

Even after you’ve been on antibiotics.

You may even have tried to dig under your skin to cut out the nail.

Here are some common recommendations for home treatment of ingrown nails.

Take this True or False for home care remedies and see what works best for home care of ingrown toenails:

T/F: Soak your feet in warm water or even apple cider vinegar.

T/F: Put Cotton or Floss under the nail

T/F: Apply antibiotic ointment or take oral antibiotics.

T/F: Pain relief medication such as aspirin, ibuprofen or acetaminophen will help me.

T/F: Topical or oral antibiotics will make the ingrown nail problem go away.

The answer to all of these questions is FALSE.

What should I do if I have an ingrown nail?

Podiatrists best advice on treating ingrown toenail is to treat an ingrown nail immediately.  The longer you wait the worse it becomes. If it is not infected it may become infected. Antibiotics treatments haven’t worked because the cause of the problem has not been addressed.

This problem is almost never self healing.

How does a podiatrist treat an ingrown toenail?

Podiatrist are medically trained to treat this condition. Often you have to not only cut the nail, but you have to have the piece of nail growing under your skin removed. Not all ingrown toenails are treated the same way.  A podiatrist does hundreds of these procedures and understand what type of treatment you need. Sometimes local anesthesia is used to minimize your pain. Don’t rely on an Urgent Care Center to resolve the problem they have neither the experience or the expertise.

What can I do to prevent ingrown toenail?

The best home care treatment for ingrown toenails is to avoid the problem with accurate knowledge of how to care for your toenails and a small investment in  simple self-care.

  1. Use precision instruments to cut the nail straight across leaving the nail to grow approximately 1mm beyond the nail fold (corner). Get the right implement whether it is a nail nipper for thick nails, a nail scissor, or if you prefer a toenail clipper.  Never round the edges or cut the corners.  This may sound counterintuitive, but it works.
  2. Make sure your shoes fit well. Shoes that are both too large, or too small can cause the nail to grow into your skin.

    Shoes that are tight will put pressure on the nail,

    Shoes that are too large will cause micro trauma as your feet keep sliding around and bumping up against the top of shoes.
  1. If you have excessive pronation, your foot turns in too much, your big toe may keep bumping against your shoes. You may need an orthotic to correctly align your feet to prevent ingrown nails.
If you run be extra careful about fit and wearing socks. Make sure your toe does not keep bumping up against the front of your shoe.