A toenail becomes ingrown when it grows into the skin of the toe instead of over it. Ingrown toenails are common and are prone to infection. As the nail grows further, it may tear the skin and deliver germs and other bacteria into the resulting wound.
Ingrown toenails are painful and may result in bleeding, a pus-filled abscess where the nail enters the skin, and overgrowth of skin around the toenail. When the ingrowth is still new, you may only feel tenderness and pain when you press the area.
This condition is often caused by cutting the nails too short, especially if they are the curvy type. It can also be caused by irregular nails, poor foot hygiene, toenail injuries, or shoes that put too much pressure on the toenails. It may be caused by genetic factors as well. Some genes can influence the nails to grow a certain way.
If you have an ingrown toenail, it might not resolve on its own. It should be treated on time to prevent it from worsening. Here are a list of remedies you can try:
Trim and File the Nail or Soak Your Feet in Warm, Soapy Water
Trimming and filing your ingrown toenails is one of the best ways to prevent it from worsening. This is done in the early stages when the ingrown nail hasn’t been buried too dip into the skin. You can carefully pull the nail out of the skin then trim and file it so it doesn’t grow back that way.
Soak the foot with the ingrown nail in warm, soapy water. This will help reduce pain and swelling around the toenail. You can do this up to three times every day. Each foot soak should last for up to 20 minutes. You can use castile soap to make the water soapy.
When treating ingrown toenails, you should always keep your affected foot dry to prevent infection from festering. Dry your affected foot well once you’re done soaking it in warm water.