Puss, ooze, swelling, discoloration, and pain are NOT part of an awesome Halloween costume. When someone has a ‘pain in the toenail’, they often head straight to their bathroom to fix it right on up – my immediate family is no exception! Both my husband and sister have attempted this home remedy of digging the corners out themselves to relieve the pressure caused by a nail digging into the side of their skin.
The problem is twofold: first, most of the time people skip the step of cleaning their tools of choice before working on their feet. This will most certainly lead to infection and a round of antibiotics. You don’t want an infection toe when you’re trying to trick or treat, or even if you’re just on candy duty!
Secondly, when you trim back the corner yourself, you can angle the nail in a way that leads right back to an ingrown! You want to gently snip the edge, not dig out the entire corner – this will lead to a larger ingrown nail down the road (Thanksgiving, anyone?).
If you see white drainage (pus) or the toe is red, hot, or swollen to the touch, do yourself a pain favor and head straight to a podiatrist! You can read about some SAFE at home tips here. Once the area is cleaned out (down to the root, but we use nice numbing medication BEFORE working on toes!) we can easily work with you on further options to make sure you aren’t limping this Halloween!!