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How to relieve an ingrown toenail at home without seeing a podiatrist
An ingrown toenail is one of those pesky minor ailments that can cause a lot of pain, discomfort and inconvenience. Wearing enclosed shoes becomes problematic when even the slightest pressure on the affected toe can cause additional pain. It can make walking uncomfortable and rule out playing any kind of sport until the issue is resolved.
What exactly is an ingrown toenail?
Mark Lin is Australia’s leading sports podiatrist, Principal Sports Podiatrist and Director of The Footwork Clinic in Sydney, New South Wales, and he says “Improper nail trimming, tight-fitting footwear, trauma or pressure from the adjacent toes can cause the edge of the nail to grow into the skin, causing inflammation, swelling, infection and pain.”
Fortunately, there are some effective remedies you can try at home before seeing a podiatrist for this common ailment, says Lin.
- Prevention is always better than cure, so to avoid ingrown toenails, make sure to always cut straight across and not down into the sides, as this can cause the skin to grow over the edge of the nail. If you are in the habit of picking at your nails, stop doing that as picking can cause tiny splinters of nail to puncture the skin.
- Try soaking the affected foot in a basin of warm water with a few tablespoons of Epsom salts or a 1/4 cup of vinegar to reduce the swelling and pain. Vinegar has an antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect and apple cider vinegar has antifungal properties too. Soak the foot for up to 20 minutes, three times a day and dry thoroughly afterwards.
- Avoid wearing tight-fitting socks and shoes that compress the toes together as this will only aggravate the condition. You can try placing a small cotton ball between the affected toes to relieve the pressure on the toenail.
If you have tried all of the above without much relief, suffer from recurring incidents and would like an alternative to surgery, The Footwork Clinic is on hand to assist.
Lin highly recommends a revolutionary new treatment modality called nail bracing. “Nail bracing is a unique solution to ingrown toenails, utilising a fibreglass brace that is fitted to the toenail. The brace corrects the curvature of the toenail, thereby lifting the toenail out of the nail fold gently over time, without pain.”
“This treatment technique has a high rate of success and we’ve consistently seen a vast improvement in patients with recurring incidents. It’s quick to apply, painless and provides symptomatic relief as soon as thirty minutes after application. This is the perfect solution for people who would like to avoid surgery and our podiatrists are highly experienced in the technique,” Lin concludes.
The Footwork Clinic are leaders in the provision of holistic solutions to injuries and conditions of the lower limb. They’re passionate about helping people to improve and maintain their health and believe that looking after the feet is the key to maintaining an active healthy living for as long as possible.
The Footwork Clinic is situated in Chatswood on Sydney’s North Shore and Sydney CBD. (Ingrown toenail nail bracing only available in Chatswood). Contact them to receive the best treatment advice for your ingrown toenail.
For further information, visit the The Footwork Clinic – Leading Sports, Podiatry, Foot And Lower Limb Corrective Services to book online, or call Mark Lin or his friendly team on +61 2 9131 6891.
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The information contained in this guide is provided in good faith and is not intended to be nor is it to be used as a substitute for any sort of professional, medical or podiatric advice. An accurate diagnosis can only be made following personal consultation with a podiatrist. Any users should always seek the advice of their podiatrist, or other qualified healthcare providers before commencing any treatment.
We hope you enjoyed this article
The information contained in this article is based on the authors’ opinion only and is of a general nature which is not indicative of future results or events and does not consider your personal situation or particular needs. Professional advice should always be sought relevant to your circumstances.
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