How serious is an ingrown toenail?

Left untreated or undetected, an ingrown toenail can infect the underlying bone and lead to a serious bone infection. Complications can be especially severe if you have diabetes, which can cause poor blood flow and damage nerves in your feet.

What will happen if you leave an ingrown toenail untreated?

When left untreated, an ingrown toenail can lead to infection. This can lead to worsening pain and even fever. In some cases, an untreated ingrown toenail can spread the infection to the bone beneath the nail.

When should you go to the doctor for an ingrown toenail?

Call your doctor if your toe is red, warm, swollen, or drains pus, or if there are red streaks leading from your toe. Your doctor might give you antibiotics. If your toenail is very ingrown, your doctor might suggest minor surgery to remove all or part of the ingrown nail. He or she may refer you to a podiatrist.

Will an ingrown toenail eventually come out?

An ingrown toenail occurs when the toenail grows into the skin next to the nail. It most commonly affects the big toe. Although an ingrown toenail will not go away without treatment, people can usually treat it at home.

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How long does it take for an ingrown toenail to grow out?

It may take from seven to 15 days for the nail to grow out so that it does not poke into the skin any longer.

How do you get a deep ingrown toenail out?

Here’s how:

  1. Soak your feet in warm water. Do this for 15 to 20 minutes three to four times a day. …
  2. Place cotton or dental floss under your toenail. After each soaking, put fresh bits of cotton or waxed dental floss under the ingrown edge. …
  3. Apply antibiotic cream. …
  4. Choose sensible footwear. …
  5. Take pain relievers.

Should you wear socks with an ingrown toenail?

Cut toenails in a fairly straight line, and do not cut them too short. You should be able to get your fingernail under the sides and end of the nail. Well-fitting shoes and socks. Do not wear shoes that are short or tight in the toe area.

Can I leave an ingrown toenail alone?

If the infected ingrown nail is left untreated the infection can spread to the bone beneath the nail or, in extreme cases, enter the blood stream and cause sepsis, gangrene or a flesh eating disorder. For those with diabetes or peripheral vascular disease, an ingrown toenail should never be left untreated.

Can you get sepsis from a ingrown toenail?

Even a particularly bad ingrown toenail that becomes infected can lead to sepsis, he says, although that is not a common occurrence.

How do I put cotton on my ingrown toenail?

To do this when you have an ingrown nail:

  1. Soak your foot in warm water for about 15 minutes to soften the nail.
  2. Wedge a small piece of wet cotton under the corner of the nail to cushion the nail and lift it slightly. This keeps it from cutting the skin.
  3. Repeat daily until the nail has grown out and can be trimmed.
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Does a ingrown toenail hurt when getting it removed?

Does it hurt? Ingrown toenails can be painful, especially if you press on or around the nail. Some people report that the anesthetic injection before surgery can be painful. But after the injection takes effect and the numbness sets in, you should be comfortable during the procedure.

Your podiatrist