An ingrown toenail occurs when the edge of the nail becomes buried under the skin. This can cause pain, and red and inflamed skin in the area surrounding it.
According to the website MedlinePlus, there are several factors that can cause an ingrown toenail. The most common causes, however, are shoes that do not fit well and unkempt toenails. This condition generally causes the skin to redden and in some cases, can cause infection.
It is important to note that some people are born with curved nails that tend to grow downwards. Others have nails that are too big for their toes. A crushed foot or other injuries can also lead to an ingrown toenail.
In patients with diabetes, nerve damage in the leg or foot, poor circulation or if they have an infection in their toenail, it is best to be seen by a doctor. Otherwise, the suggestion is to treat the toenail at home. These treatments can include:
– Soaking the foot in hot water three or four times a day, if possible. The rest of the time, keep the toe dry.
– Gently massaging the inflamed skin.
– Place a small piece of cotton or floss under the nail. Moisten the cotton with water or an antiseptic agent.
Basic treatment can manage infection and help alleviate pain. The condition tends to reoccur if preventative measures are not taken, which is why it is important to take good care of your feet.