Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery (Full Guide)

ingrown toenail surgery recovery

Sadly, an ingrown toenail can be horribly painful that you have to undergo surgery to get rid of it.

Now the question I get a lot is what is the Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery time?

And, if there’s some way to speed the healing process. Today, I’m going to give you a full guide for this problem.

Let’s discuss this guide in details, so keep reading to know how to recover…

What Is An Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery?

Basically, an ingrown toenail is when the edge of your nail is damaged. That’s when your nail doesn’t properly fit into the side groove.

You’ll notice that your nail is curling downward and digging into the skin.

Sadly, this causes tremendous pain, redness, drainage, and swelling.

At times, a lateral pointing spicule (a piece of the nail) digs into the side of your toe and the tissue becomes hypertrophied (pushed up).

[Read : How to Relieve Sharp Pain In Bunion]

Causes of an Ingrown Toenail:

The reasons for an ingrown toenail are a lot. However, there are 2 main reasons behind it.

The two reasons for ingrown toenail are…

  1. Improperly trimmed nails.
  2. Poorly fitting shoes.

ingrown toenail surgery recovery

When you wear really tight shoes, you’re altering the fit of the nail in the groove.

Moreover, the edge of your nail can curl down into the nail groove as you tear or peel off your nails.

You can get really irritated skin because of a torn nail.

Your skin next to the nail will get inflamed, red and painful. In some, cases the skin can get an infection.

So, what is the best way to prevent an ingrown toenail? That’s what we’re going to discuss next!

Prevention of an Ingrown Toenail:

Simply, you need to prevent the 2 main caused to an ingrown toenail.

  1. You need to properly trim your nails. Basically, you should trim your nail straight across and the corners of your nail at the end of your toe.
  2. If you play in your toes at night, then I’d recommend wearing a sock to bed. If you’re a parent, and you see your kid playing with their nails or feet in bed, then make them wear a sock right away. Wearing a sock will simply remind you to stop playing or picking your toenails.

How Can We Treat the Inflamed Skin around the Ingrown Toenail?

Now, I’m going to tell you how to treat an ingrown toenail pain…

Mild Pain:

First, if you’re experiencing a slight red or sore skin around your toe, then, it’s best if you soak your foot in warm water. Then, place dry cotton under your toe after you’ve soaked it.

Severe Pain:

If the ingrown toenail gets worse, you’ll experience swelling, pain, and drainage in your skin.

In that case, it’s best to visit a proper physician and he’ll prescribe an antibiotic ointment.

Sometimes, the doctor will prescribe an oral antibiotic, if the skin inflammation around your toenail is severe.

So, when will the doctor recommend a surgery to treat the ingrown toenail? Let’s figure out…

5 Surgical Procedures for Ingrown Nails:

First of all, you should know that this surgery is all about removing the small portion on the side of your toenail that’s damaging the nail bed beneath.

Your doctor will give you a numbing medicine so you won’t feel any pain during the removal of the ingrown toenail.

Then, the doctor starts cutting the toenail to allow your nail to grow straight.

Naturally, the skin underneath that nail will grow a new nail which must be destroyed to create a thinner nail.

If you have a hypertrophied (heaped up) tissue next to the ingrown toenail, the doctor must remove it.

Your toe will be bandaged until complete Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery.

There are 5 types of ingrown toenail surgeries that your doctor will choose from:

  1. Slant back procedure.
  2. Partial removal of nail.
  3. Total removal of nail.
  4. Partial permanent removal of nail.
  5. Total permanent removal of nail.

Your doctor will choose which one of these procedures or surgeries based on how severe the ingrown toenail is and the pain.

Also, your doctor will take into consideration your medical history.

You can get your ingrown toenail fixed from the first visit to the physician. Also, the Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery time differs from one procedure to another.

So, what are the differences between these 5 procedures?

a. Slant Back Procedure:

This procedure is chosen when you’re having a mildly incurved toenail.

It’s basically a simple angled cut of the corner of your toenail just before where the nail cuts into your skin

The best news is that it’s a painless procedure that doctor performs because you didn’t properly trim your nail.

How to recover from Slant Back Procedure?

1. Pain Killers:

You can take any over the counter painkillers if you’re experiencing any pain in your toe.

I’d recommend painkillers like Tylenol suffice or NSAIDs for good pain management.

2. Bandage Changing:

If you have any drainage or the nail has already cut into your skin, then you must apply an anti-bacterial ointment and a bandage.

It might take several days to recover, but, you can speed up the recovery by changing the bandage every day.

ingrown toenail surgery recovery 3

3. Get into Your Normal Routine:

You can walk or run and get into your routine normally after the procedure.

However, the only I don’t recommend after the Slant Back Procedure is swimming in lakes or rivers to avoid any infections.

Do you need to follow-up with your doctor?

Doctor follow-ups are always recommended! You’ll just visit your doctor after several weeks to take a quick look at your toenail.

b. Partial Removal of Nail:

This procedure is also called “Partial Nail Avulsion”. So, when does the doctor choose this procedure?

When you have a skin infection, this is the procedure of choice. Or, when it’s hard to remove the incurved nail comfortably without anesthetic.

Simply, your doctor will trim a thin part of your nail down to its root.

Now, the infection can be drained out making it easier to remove the ingrown toenail.

How to recover from Partial Removal of Nail?

1. Pain Killers:

You can take over the counter pain killers (NSAIDs or Tylenol suffice) to manage any post-procedure pain.

2. Bandage Changing:

Of course, your doctor will apply an antibiotic cream or ointment on your toenail after the procedure.

Then, he’ll cover your toe with a compressive wrap and a gauze bandage. You need to change your bandage every day.

Can you bathe while having the bandage on your toe? Yes, there’s no harm there, but, change it as soon as you’re done.

3. Get into Your Normal Routine:

Sadly, after you’ve undergone partial nail avulsion, you should rest and avoid any movement for several days.

Resting will allow a successful Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery.

After a couple of days, you can start moving, but expect some pain in your toe.

ingrown toenail surgery recovery 4

Do you need to follow-up with your doctor?

Yes! After one or two weeks of your Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery, you need your doctor to have a look at your toenail to check its healing process.

Importantly, you should that it’ll take almost 8-12 months for the removed nail to grow back.

c. Total Removal of Nail:

Luckily, doctors rarely perform a total toenail removal. It’s only done when the doctor finds the infection spreading underneath your nail plate.

Basically, it’s the similar to partial nail avulsion, but instead of partial nail removal, it’s a total removal.

Sadly, in the case of total nail removal, you’ll experience pain in your toe that will last for weeks.

It’ll take almost 8-12 months for your new toenail to grow back.

d. Permanent Partial Nail Removal (Matrixectomy recovery):

Now, this procedure is also known as Matrixectomy and it’s chosen when the doctor finds that your ingrown toenail is a chronic condition.

Also, the doctor chooses it when all the previous procedures have failed.

Basically, there’s a thin piece of your toenail that is trimmed to the root. Then, the doctor adds Phenol on your toenail where your nail grows.

Phenol prevents your toe from growing a new nail, and, therefore, prevent chronic ingrown toenail.

How to recover from Matrixectomy?

Simply, the Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery is like as we mentioned in Partial Removal of Nail recovery.

Do you need to follow-up with your doctor?

After 1-2 weeks of Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery, I’d advise you to visit your doctor to check on your toe and follow-up with its healing progress.

e. Total Permanent Removal of Nail:

Finally, this procedure is exactly like Matrixectomy but with the removal of the nail completely and permanently.

Doctors remove the entire nail and prevent its growth when they’ve tried Matrixectomy and it didn’t stop the reoccurrence.

Last but not least, the most important question…

6. What is the Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery time?

Now, that we’ve discussed the 5 different procedures, it’s time to know Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery time.

I’ve already mentioned in each procedure the expected recovery time. However, on average, it’ll take a couple of days or a couple of weeks depending on the severity.

To speed up Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery, make sure to elevate your feet for a couple of hours every day.

This was your full guide on Ingrown Toenail Surgery Recovery time and we’ve discussed all what you need to know.

Hope you take good care of yourself and health. Never neglect your body’s call for help to avoid any health complications. Cheers!

ingrown toenail surgery recovery 5


Post Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.