The pain that is caused by an ingrown toenail is probably one of the most annoying kinds of pain. What makes it even more uncomfortable and painful is the fact that it messes with your daily routines.
It isn’t comfy at all when you feel that the shoes you are wearing are aggravating the nail more and more.
Besides, it seems like the pain never stops!
Onychocryptosis, the medical term for an ingrown nails is one of the most common toenail problems. If not treated on time, it can even cause infection.
Even though not many studies have been made concerning this problem, there are a few facts referring to this condition. It can affect patients of any age, some results suggested a slightly higher male-to-female ratio. It usually happens to people in the 14-25 age group.
Improper nail-cutting technique, trauma, anatomical factors, a pincer-shaped toenail, tight footwear, toe deformities, the presence of a subungual exostosis and sometimes the use of isotretinoin while treating acne are the reasons an ingrown toenail develops.
One of the worst problems that can add to the pain is toenail fungus. This happens when fungus enters in the nail through a cut, or break. However, it is to be noticed that fungus is not caused by poor hygiene. Of course, if you have an ingrown nail, you should make sure the area is always clean.
The good news is that you don’t have to pay a trip to the doctor to get rid of an ingrown nail.
First of all, let’s make clear what an ingrown toenail is. It is a condition in which the side or corner of a toenail grows into the soft flesh. This can be a result of poor hygiene, repetitive trauma, improper trimming or even a genetic predisposition.
Most often, you can treat ingrown toenails by yourself. It usually happens to the big toe, although not always. Regardless, the pain is very uncomfortable. It can cause redness, swelling and sometimes an infection.
Check out some of the ways on how to get rid of it.
1. Soak or Wash the Foot
Soak the foot in warm, soapy water. Repeat this a few times a day. If you want to ease the process of drawing out the toenail from the skin, add epsom salt to the water. It will soften the skin of the affected area.
2. Use Castile Soap
This soap’s natural and pure ingredients will make the process of getting rid of your toenail easier. Make sure to keep the foot clean and dry afterwards.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar Wash
Although it does’t have a very pleasant smell, apple cider vinegar can be really helpful. Add a quarter cup of vinegar to warm water. However, know that this treatment can’t cure an existing bacterial infection. It is only helpful when you want to keep the healed area clean.
4. Dental Floss Under the Nail
Take a tiny piece of cotton, gauze or dental floss (not flavored), roll it between the fingers and place it between the nail and skin. This will help shifting the nail to grow in the correct direction instead of down into the skin.
5. Avoid High Heels and Tight Shoes
So, what you can do to relieve this condition, is avoid wearing tight shoes or high heels. If, it’s summer, wearing flat sandals is ideal if you want to speed up the healing process.
6. Use Essential Oils
Create an essential oil by combining melaleuca, cyprus, clove, lavender and rosemary. Blend these with a carrier oil, like coconut oil. Blend, and then massage the affected area. This will provide a healthier environment for the toenail to heal.
Homemade Ingrown Toenail Ointment Recipe
5 drops eucalyptus oil
5 drops tea tree oil
1 drop oregano oil
5 drops lavender oil
2 drops peppermint oil
2 ounces aloe vera gel
2 ounces coconut oil
1. Put all ingredients in a jar
2. Use a small spoon, and stir until they are well-blended
3. After you wash the foot, apply the mixture to the area.
4. Do this when you have free time and stay at home, because the mixture has to dry
5. Repeat this 2-3 times a day. Wash your hands afterwards. Oregano is a natural antibiotic but can be very strong giving a burning sensation. It’s important to use these oils as prescribed, with a carrier oil such as the coconut oil.
* This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances.