Can My Ingrown Toenail Heal on Its Own?

Can My Ingrown Toenail Heal on Its Own?

Most of us lead pretty busy lives. That means you probably only want to make a doctor’s appointment when it’s truly necessary. When you notice an ingrown toenail, you might want to know if you can wait it out. 

The answer is a little complicated. Technically, no, an ingrown toenail won’t heal on its own. That said, if you catch it early enough, you might be able to treat it at home. 

Ultimately, Christopher Vittori, DPM, and Ameet Thakrar, DPM, want to make life as easy as possible for our Vittori Foot & Ankle Specialist patients. In addition to in-office ingrown nail care at our offices in Homer Glen and New Lenox, Illinois, we also want to help you identify when you’re a candidate for home care. 

Starting with home care

You might be able to treat your ingrown nail at home, assuming that you catch it early. 

If your toe is only a little bit red or tender around the nail, your home care starts with soaking your foot in warm water a few times each day. Other than that, keep your foot clean and dry. Make sure you’re choosing sandals or shoes with plenty of room in the toe box, too.

Repeat the soaking process for three days. If your toe isn’t better by then, it’s time to see a doctor.

When to see a doctor about your ingrown toenail

While you can try the home-care process first in many cases, you shouldn't wait to schedule a visit to one of our offices if:

Once the nail breaks the surface of your skin, you can get an infection, which will make your situation much more problematic and uncomfortable. 

Here at our office, Dr. Thakrar or Dr. Vittori removes the part of your nail growing into your skin. In some cases, we might need to remove part of the nail bed, too. This allows your nail to grow back normally. To keep you comfortable, we can apply a local anesthetic during this process. 

With this treatment, you can rest easy knowing your ingrown nail is fully corrected. With home care, you need to keep an eye on things to make sure the ingrown toenail doesn’t return. Long story short, if you want a way to address your ingrown nail once and for all, make an appointment with us. 

To recap, your ingrown toenail won’t heal on its own. If you catch it early, you can try a few days of home care — but if that doesn’t work, we’re here to help. 

To get rid of your ingrown nail, call Vittori Foot & Ankle Specialist or schedule an appointment online today. 

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