An ingrown toenail, or also known as onychocryptosis, is a very common problem from which suffer many people.
The corner or side edge of the toenail grows into the soft flesh of the nearby skin and it causes a lot of discomfort and sometimes pain. It occurs most common in toenails but, in some rare instances, the fingernails can also become ingrown.
There are several causes of ingrown toenails such as wearing tight-fitting shoes, a nail injury, improper trimming of nails or having unusually curved toenails.
People who suffer from diabetes or other health problems that can cause poor blood circulation to the feet have higher risk of developing this nail problem.
Some of the symptoms are also swelling, persistent pain and redness. If you don’t treat it, onychocryptosis can soon lead to worse infection. Most common symptoms of the infection are redness and swelling around the nail, watery discharge and drainage of pus tinged with blood.
You can easily cure the ingrown nail at home, of course if is caught early. But, if you notice some of the symptoms of the infection you should consult a doctor, because the infection can spread and also can cause complications.
Here are some useful ways to get rid of the ingrown toenails:
1. Soak your feet in warm water
If you are suffering from ingrown toenails, soak your feet in warm water a few times a day. It can help you in relieving the pain, swelling and tenderness that are caused by this problem.
First fill one small foot tub with warm water.
After soak your feet in it for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Repeat this procedure 3 to 4 times a day to feel relief.
2. Put a cotton wedge under the nail
After you finished the treatment with the warm water, you can put a cotton wedge under your affected painful toenail. It will help it grow above the skin. This also will relieve the pain and speed up the whole healing process.
First soak your feet in warm water and dry them thoroughly.
Then carefully lift the affected nail with a blunt pair of tweezers and put a small rolled piece of cotton between the nail and the skin.
You should replace the cotton every time when you soak the feet to prevent any infections.
3. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt, scientifically also known as magnesium sulphate, is very effective for treating the ingrown toenails. It can soften the skin around the affected area and make it easy to draw out the ingrown nail. It also reduces the inflammation.
First mix 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt in a foot tub filled with warm water.
Soak your feet in this tub for 20 minutes.
After dry your feet thoroughly.
Repeat this procedure 3 or 4 times a week.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
The apple cider vinegar is also helpful for the ingrown toenails. It has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory nature which means that can help relieve the symptoms. Use either of these remedies 2 or 3 times daily until you are satisfied with the result.
First mix equal amounts of apple cider vinegar and warm water in one small foot tub. Soak your feet in it for about 20 to 30 minutes and then dry your toenail throughly.
You have another option. Soak one small cotton ball in raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar and put it on the affected nail. Then cover it with bandage for a few hours and remove it.
5. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide as an effective disinfectant can help in reducing the risk of any infections and also can relieve the pain and inflammation caused by an ingrown toenail.
In a small tub mix approximately ½ cup of hydrogen peroxide and warm water.
Soak the feet in this solution for about 20 minutes.
You should do this once or twice daily.
Note: You should not self-treat this condition at home if you suffer from poor blood circulation to your foot, conditions like diabetes or nerve damage in your leg or foot.