Ingrown toenails can be extremely painful. An ingrown toenail occurs when the toe nail grows into the nail bed and becomes embedded in the skin around the nail and later may become sore, red and swollen. This can result in the area bleeding or weeping and sometimes becoming infected.
The leading cause of Ingrown toenail is inheritance, caused by the acute curvature of the nail although the way person trims his or her toe nails can be a contributory factor. Shoes that are too tight or short can put pressure between the nail and soft tissue and eventually cause ingrown toenails.
Soaking your foot in warm, salty or soapy water several times each day is usually a good way to treat an ingrown nail. If the pain is persistent or see any discharge either sides of nail please contact your podiatrist to determine the best cause of treatment. If infection is present your GP can prescribe a suitable course of antibiotics.
If an acute infection occurs part of your ingrown toenail may need to be surgically removed. The procedure involves injecting the toe with an anesthetic and cutting and removing the ingrown part of the toenail. The nail root and matrix are then destroyed by applying a chemical called Phenol to stop the offending section of nail growing back. Partial growth of the nail plate after permanent removal is rare, but possible. Because the nail matrix has been destroyed, the nail should not grow again.
Specialised consultation and care for ingrown toe nail at Temple Clinic in Ealing, West London