Almost everyone has experienced developing ingrown toe nails at some point, or isquite likely to at some point in the future. They mostly form in the great toenail and are triggered by the sideway growth of a person's nail at the edge of the toe's skin. This abnormal growth forces the toenail to push into the surrounding skin which often results in an itchy and uncomfortable feeling at first. Normally, toenail growth should be outward or vertically inclined, unfortunately for some reason a few toenails have an abnormal way of growing.

The most common symptoms of ingrown toenails are painful and sore nail folds with varying degrees of redness, coupled with yellow or clear discharge and swelling. This is common with a person who has previously experienced repeated trauma or feet injuries, congenital toenail malformation, unnaturally short nails, very long toes, overweight, arthritis, fungal nail disease, abnormal nail growths, excessive foot sweating or congenital foot deformity. Those who also have poor foot hygiene and bad posture are also most likely to develop this condition.

One of the main causes of ingrown toe nail complications is the presence of bacteria and fungi. The warmth and moist environment of our feet makes them the perfect breeding ground for these types of microorganisms; Pseudomonas, Candida, staphylococcus and trichophyton to name but a few. So if you notice anything peculiar forming on your toe nails, better consult with your physician promptly so you can avoid tissue infection, paronychia or scarring of the skin and the nail fold.

In any case you have developed ingrown toenails, it is best to follow simple home remedies like warm soaks for ten minutes in water with Epsom salts, diluted white wine vinegar and very diluted Clorox bleach foot bath for approximately 2 to 3 times daily; elevating the foot once in a while; use of dental floss or tapes to help lift your skin's nail off and gently rolling back a piece of your overgrown skin back in place immediately after you soak the infected toenail will all help to ease pain.

To avoid any toe pain in the future, it is best to wear wider types of toe shoes instead of poor fitted and narrow shoes. Be sure to cut or trim your toenails straight across rather than in a curved pattern and develop the habit of good foot hygiene. It is important to maintain trim and clean toenails and to protect your toenails during any sports or physical activities. Try to avoid home surgery treatments done at home without professional assistance, it rarely ends well. If the pain caused by the ingrown toenail remains severe for more than five days, an infection is likely and antibiotics, and therefore a doctor's visit are vital. Ingrown toenail surgery is not often required, but for recurring problems and severely ingrown toenails it is the logical step.