Ingrown toenails are fairly common and usually affect the big toe. The condition happens when the corner or side of your toenail grows into the soft flesh of the toe resulting in pain, redness and sometimes infection. You can often perform ingrown toenail remedies at home on your own or with the help of a friend if you can’t reach your feet easily.

One of the most common causes of ingrown toenails are shoes and socks that fit to tightly. The damp atmosphere inside of the shoe can cause the skin of the toe around the nail to soften and expand and the toenail may begin to curve slightly making it much easier to begin to grow into the soft skin. The toenail is pushed into the skin every time the tight shoes are worn and over time begins to grow into the skin on the toe. This happens most often on the big toe when the nail pushes out or into the sides of the flesh.

 Another common cause of ingrown toenails is the toenails not being cut correctly (not straight across or being cut too short) or by not keeping your feet clean and dry. Tearing or picking at the corners of the nails can also increase the chances of getting an ingrown toenail. The toenail itself can sometimes have an unusual curve causing it to grow into the tissue of the toe, and sometimes it can be caused from injuring the toe. Some people have inherited nail deformities and abnormally shaped nail beds which make them much more susceptible to getting an ingrown toenail.

If undetected and untreated the ingrown toenail can cause infection, eventually even into the bone. Diabetes or impaired blood circulation can accelerate the infection in the toe. If you or someone you know can reach your feet and use simple tools ( ingrown toenail clipper) you can easily treat the ingrown toenail yourself but if this is not possible then you may have to see a doctor.

There are many things people can do themselves to avoid or treat this painful circumstance. Begin by soaking the foot in very warm water for awhile and gently wash the tender area so you can get a good look at what needs to be done before removing any skin or nail. Make sure everything is as sterile as possible; use some gauze with rubbing alcohol on the toe and the tools before and after the procedure. If the toe is just too tender, try using a topical anesthetic and or ice.

However painful it may be, it will only get worse if not treated.  After you get the skin and nail softened up some, you may be able to trim the nail and skin to separate them a bit – if the ingrown toenail clipper alone are not enough to do what you need to do then you can buy an ingrown toe nail kit that will have all the tools you will need. If you still can't clip the nail away ( if it's just too tender)  then try to get something between the nail and the toe. Place fresh bits of cotton or waxed dental floss under the nail to help it grow away from the skin and make sure to change this daily. It may take a week or two to see any progress of the nail growing away from the skin.

With these ingrown toenail remedies you can cure yourself or at least stop the condition from getting worse until you can get to a doctor. Go without shoes or wear something loose for awhile if you can, the goal is to keep pressure off of the toenail. Remember to keep your feet as clean and dry as possible. Continue to pay close attention to the progress or lack of any; if the pain is getting worse and the infection is not clearing up, call your doctor.

My wife gets ingrown toenails, I have even helped her remove a few of them, but this is what she does to help take care of hers.

Hi, my name is Lisa and over the years I have suffered with ingrown toenails. I have never sought medical advice for this but these are a few of the things that have worked for me. For starters I think it's important to wear the right size shoe. I didn't know it but we are to have one thumb-width at the end of our toes and switching to wide-width shoes might help too. If the toe box on your shoes is too small your nails can rub against each other and cause irritation.

The next thing that worked for me is to get regular pedicures. You don't need to go to an expensive spa to do this; I go to the salon right in my local Walmart. I have found one of the ladies to be quite good at extricating the offending cuticle and I will request her every time I go. It's totally worth the $30 once a month to get your nails done right. Make sure they allow ample time to soak before the person starts working on your nails though or it'll hurt. When done properly you should at most feel some mild pressure and then awww, sweet release as the ingrown is removed.

One last note, some people may say to clip your nails a certain way but I've been told (and found through experience to be true) that clipping them straight across is the best way to keep them under better control. I actually had one person many years ago tell me to notch the nail in the middle so that it looked sort of like a hoof. No thank you. That's not only weird looking but creates more sharp edges for socks and such to get caught on.

Like I said, the best "cure" I've found is getting regular pedicures. And don't forget, once you find that magical person who can relieve your pain, tip them well!