Relieving the pain; preventing a recurrence. An ingrown toenail digs into the surrounding skin, causing pain and, often, swelling and inflammation. The usual cause is a toenail cut too short and curved at the corners, shoes that are too tight, or both. Instead of growing out straight, the toenail tends to curve and thus cut into the flesh. Shoe pressure aggravates the condition and the pain.
To lessen the pain and prevent possible infection, soak a bit of absorbent cotton in antibiotic solution or ointment and push it under the nail edge. If the area becomes infected, consult a physician or podiatrist.
Prevent the condition by cutting toenails straight across, not curved. Wear shoes with ample toe space.