The Three Biggest Mistakes That People With Ingrown Toenails Make That You Need To Know About!

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Ingrown toenail mistakes | Sutherland Podiatry Centre

Have you noticed now that you have pulled your winter boots out of the cupboard, your big toes are all of a sudden so sore to touch? Is the pressure of the bed sheet getting unbearable? If you answered yes…keep reading.

Winter Footwear is one of the main reasons ingrown toenails flare up. It is so important to recognise the symptoms early and get the ingrown nails fixed! More importantly, if you can recognise the simple risk factors, and thus prevent ingrown toenails all winter, your feet will be cosy and PAIN FREE!

For those who are unsure, an ingrown nail is where the nail meets the skin on the side of the toe (the sulcus) causing pressure and digging in. Signs of an ingrown include redness, pus, swelling, and or increased pain. If ingrown nails are not addressed in a timely manner, the nail can actually penetrate and break the skin. This allows for bad bacteria to enter the body, with a nasty infection to follow. Not only is an infected ingrown toenail painful, it is very dangerous, especially for the immune compromised and diabetic population. If left untreated too long, consequences can include cellulitis, ulceration, and unfortunately even amputation. Nobody wants to down that path!

By seeing an expert who deals with ingrown nails on a daily basis, you will be in safe hands and enjoy wearing your favourite winter boots again, and avoid any of the above possibly occurring.

The biggest mistakes people make is ignoring the initial symptoms and thinking it will just ‘go away itself’…. It doesn’t! A lot of people also go straight to antibiotics without having the nail spike removed. This does not fix an ingrown nail, only temporarily rid you of infection. Before long, the toe looks worse than before and you will be making another trip to the doctor for a repeat script. Lastly, people often fix the ingrown in the short term, but do not address the cause, leading to another flare up soon after.

You CAN avoid all this, by taking on board these few simple steps and avoid getting an ingrown nail in the first place, and hopefully be PAIN FREE all winter long!


  • Ensure adequate width in shoes
  • Do not cut nails too short, and do not leave any spikes un-cut.
  • Avoid fungal nail infections
  • Address any previous nail traumas
  • If the nail is growing in to the side due to genetics etc., see a Podiatrist to clear the nail side out regularly

If any of this relates to you, whether you have started to get a niggling toe, whether you have a long history of ingrown nails, or you have unfortunately inherited chronic ingrown nails from your parents, it is SO IMPORTANT to attend REGULAR podiatry appointments to have the ingrown nails cleared and PREVENT them getting to that painful and infected state.

Listen to your feet, and get on top of your nails this winter. Follow these simple steps of prevention and be pain free all year long.

If you would like to discuss any of this, please call us on (02) 9542 3491 to organise to speak with a Podiatrist. Or you can go here to book online now.

6 Comments. Leave new

  • Darrien Hansen
    January 5, 2021 2:01 am

    Thank you for mentioning how having your nail spike removed can help prevent further toenail complications from arising in the future. My brother has been unable to go to work ever since his ingrown toenail has prevented him from wearing shoes without experiencing sharp pain in his big toe, and he’d like to fix the problem before he attends our sister’s wedding this summer. Maybe he should consult a professional in order to treat his damaged toenail.

  • An ingrown toenail is a nail that curls downward and grows into the skin at the edge of your toe. I agree with you that people are ignoring it in beginning and later they had to suffer the most. So one should meet a podiatrist as soon as possible. Thanks for this informative blog. One can also try the following treatment to cure it:
    Soak your feet in warm water.
    Apply antibiotic cream.
    Choose sensible footwear.
    Take pain relievers.

  • clean u toe

    • Soak in warm salt water and tuck a “salt soaked “ thin piece of cotton wool under the the nail use a needle to tuck it, be careful not to prick the toe. I did this and saved my sons toe from an operation

  • I have an ingrown toe nail . What should I do?


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