How to Remove an Ingrown Toenail

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How to Remove and Ingrown ToenailAn ingrown toenail is considered as a common disease and is known by the names unguis incarnatus or onychocryptosis. This is a painful condition where the affected toenail grows into the nail bed on one side or on both sides of the nail. This condition may occur on your fingers or toes, but it is usually found on the big toe. This is when the damaged edges of the nails cut to the skin and grow towards the nail bed. This condition can be due to various causes but one of the main causes is wearing ill-fitted footwear.

Removal of Ingrown Toenail

The treatment of an ingrown toenail depends on the severity of the problem. A podiatrist, which is a foot specialist, can easily get rid of the corner of the ingrown. In case pain exists, this can be done under local anesthesia. When removed, the treated area will then be covered using an antiseptic wrapping that has to be kept for at least three days. Oral antibiotics can also be prescribed, especially if you are diabetic or if you are suffering from blood circulation problems. However, this treatment option is only administered for mild ingrown toenail conditions. For severe problems, surgery is often required.

How to remove an Ingrown Toenail with Surgery

Prior to surgery, a tetanus shot will be administered first and then you will be given a local anesthesia. This will then be followed by the removal of all the extra tissues around the affected toenail. In case there is an infection and pus is present, drainage will be done. The ingrown part will then be removed to allow the infected area to heal completely. The podiatrist may also remove the affected nail bed or part of it surgically or the cells within the nail bed will be destroyed using laser or a chemical. This is usually done to prevent the condition from recurring. The treated toe will be covered using an antiseptic dressing along with antibiotics for faster healing. This is known as wedge dissection, where a part of the ingrown toenail is removed and the nail is given the chance to grow back after some time.

For extreme ingrown toenail cases, the affected toe will be removed completely to prevent the infection from recurring. This is known as nail avulsion. This process is less complicated than wedge resection and will only require less than 10 minutes to be completed.  In this case, your nail will still grow back but it can only worsen the condition. To prevent the nail from growing back, chemicals like phenol will be used to coat the nail matrix. The cost of removal depends on what procedure will be used. The aftercare, on the other hand, includes the avoidance of wearing high heels or closed footwear. You should also avoid rounding the corners of your nails or cutting it too short. Quitting smoking can be helpful as well in preventing the condition from recurring.


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