It is best to treat an ingrown toenail as soon as you notice the symptoms.
We will be able to remove the small part of the nail that is digging into your skin. As your toenail grows back, we may push a piece of cotton wool under your nail in order to prevent it from growing back into your skin. The cotton wool should be changed daily.
If your nail is infected, you may be prescribed a course of antibiotics.
If your toenail does not improve we may recommend that you have part, or all, of or your toenail surgically removed.
The most common surgical procedure for treating ingrown toenails involves only removing part of the toenail. This is called partial toenail avulsion. The edges of your toenail are cut away to make the toenail narrower.
Occasionally, the folds of skin on either side of the toenail are also removed. The whole toenail will only usually be removed if the nail is thickened or misshapen. Both procedures are carried out under local anaesthetic.
To reduce the risk of your ingrown toenail reccurring, your surgeon may suggest removing the cells in your nail bed. These cells can be either surgically removed, or destroyed using a chemical called phenol.
Once the anaesthetic wears off, your toe may be very tender. You may need to take a painkiller, such as paracetamol or ibruprofen, and wear soft or open-toed sandals for about a week or so.