If you are experiencing pain and redness in the corner of a nail, it is likely that you have an ingrown nail. While these should be evaluated and treated by a Podiatrist, there are a few things you can do to make yourself more comfortable while you wait for an appointment. Never try to remove your own ingrown nail. Aside from being very painful, you can worsen the situation and give yourself an infection. Always see a licensed medical professional to treat this issue.
The first thing we recommend is soaking your foot in warm water with Epsom Salt. for the best results, do it 2 times a day for 10-15 minutes. This helps draw out any infection and can reduce the severity of the ingrown. You can also use an antibiotic ointment like Neosporin and massage it into the nail fold, away from the nail. This helps reduce and control any infection that currently exists.
Ingrown Removal Procedure: What to Expect
Conservative Care for Ingrown Nails
So what is the procedure like? At our clinic we do our very best to minimize any discomfort that comes with an ingrown removal procedure. The procedure starts with a standard ring block injection, where the Doctor injects at the base of the toe where there are less nerve endings. We use the smallest possible gauge needle, and use a cold spray so you don't feel the actual needle poke. The medication is then injected slowly, which reduces the pain. After the ansethesia sets in and you are fully numb, the procedure is a breeze. The doctor quickly removes the ingrown portion of the nail and makes sure the border is clean, and then you are bandaged up and on your way home!
After care for an ingrown nail procedure is as follows:
Remove the bandage the morning after your procedure
Soak your feet in warm water with 3 tablespoons of Epsom Salt for 10-15 minutes, twice a day.
After soaking your feet, thoroughly dry them
Apply the antibiotic cream on the wound and cover it with a band-aid
Make sure to go to your follow-up appointment if indicated by the doctor.
When dealing with ingrown nails, its always best to let the professionals handle it. Never attempt to remove your own ingrown nail. Many times patients will miss parts of the nail embedded deep in their skin leading to further discomfort. There is also an increased risk of infection when working with non-sterile tools in a non-sterile environment. So save yourself some pain and potential health issues. Make an appointment with your primary care doctor or a specialist and have it taken care of the right way, the first time.