How to Treat & Prevent Ingrown Toenails


When a toenail starts to grow into the tender skin on the sides of your toe, it can cause considerable pain, bleeding, and even contribute to bacterial or fungal toenail infections. Some people have inherited toenails that naturally curve at the edges, and they are more susceptible to developing ingrown toenails, but for many others, the culprits are tight-fitting shoes and improper toenail cutting technique. 

You can help prevent ingrown toenails with the following tips:

  • Cut your toenails properly—Always trim your toenails straight across rather than on a curve and keep them a little longer than the tip of the toe. This will help prevent the nail from getting started growing inward.

  • Wear properly fitted shoes—Wear shoes with a wider toe box because footwear that crowds your toes together can create enough pressure to cause your toenails to grow improperly.

  • Check your feet daily to catch problems before they worsen—If you catch an ingrown toenail right when it begins you may be able to prop up the edge of the nail with a piece of cotton to redirect the nail growth above the tender skin. This process may take a week or two, and you will need to change the cotton daily.

Ingrown toenails can be painful to treat, so you may want to have your foot doctor take a look. At Monroe Foot & Ankle Care, Dr. Elliott M. Perel treats a variety of conditions including diabetic foot problems, bunions, nail fungus, arthritis, and heel pain. Equipped with advanced technologies including shockwave therapy, MLS Laser treatment, and computerized gait analysis, Monroe Foot & Ankle Care provides specialized, high-quality service for patients across central New Jersey, including Monroe Township. For any problems you may be experiencing with your feet and ankles, contact our Monroe Township/Jamesburg office at (732) 521-2155.