Ingrown Fingernails Causes, Pictures & Best Natural Treatment

Can you get ingrown fingernail? Well, ingrown nails on the fingers are not common as ingrown toenails but they do happen. Therefore, your fingernails are susceptible to ingrown since anything from a simple bother to a severe infection can happen to them.

According to Mayo clinics, ingrown nails are usually painful especially if they occur as a result of either bacterial or fungal infection. Therefore, treating them on time will help to reduce the pain and aggravation.

In this post, you are going to discover some of the major causes of ingrown nails and the best natural ways to treat ingrown fingernails. You will also learn some of the natural remedies that may help to reduce the pain and inflammation caused by ingrown nails.

Note: In case you suffer from an infected ingrown toenail, read my article on how to get rid of the infected ingrown toenail.

What Is An Ingrown Fingernail?

Keratin is a protein component that is found on both your skin and nails. Nails develop when a dense layer of keratinized cells push up on the surface of the fingers. The ridges on your nails and skin help to hold the formed nails in position.

The connections of your ridges get out of position due to changes in the shape of the nail. The nails, therefore, grow into the side or corners of your skin resulting in ingrown nails. There are several factors that can lead to this condition.

Ingrown Fingernail Causes

According to WebMD, ingrown nail develops due to loss of its normal connection with the nail ridges as well as the skin ridges. There are several things that can result in an ingrown nail. They include:

  • Injury
  • Unusually fast or slow nail growth
  • Biting your fingernails
  • Improper trimming that may cause a sharp spike in the nail hence leading to an ingrown nail.

When you experience ingrown nails, the sharp edges penetrate into the skin around the nail resulting in a risk of developing either bacterial or fungal infections. These infections can cause pain and inflammations.

Ingrown Fingernail Pictures

In this post, the pictures help to bring out some of the symptoms of ingrown nails and how they look like after infections. You can examine your condition on the ingrown nails and identify the best way on how to treat the condition. Here are some of the ingrown fingernail pictures:

How Long Do Ingrown Fingernails Last

According to Dr Mehmet Oz, MD on WebMD, the severity, and type of treatment involved will determine how long will ingrown fingernails last. In case you are able to treat it at home when there is no infection, it should last for about 2 days.

In case you do not see any form of improvement within some few days, make sure to see your doctor since it could be a sign of an infection. You may need oral antibiotics to treat infection or surgical treatment of the nail.

How to Get Rid of Ingrown Fingernails

In order to get rid of an ingrown nail, it is recommended to stop it from growing inside your skin. According to the Cleveland clinic, untreated ingrown nails may require ingrown fingernail surgery. However, you can start treating ingrown nails by following the steps below:

  1. Soften your ingrown fingernail

You can soak your hands in warm water for about 20 minutes. Repeat this for about four to five times. According to Mayo clinics, soaking hands in warm water help to reduce the swellings and relieves tenderness.

  1. Before lifting the ingrown nail

According to ingrown fingernail NHS, make sure to trim your nails properly without leaving sharp edges or spikes. Sterilize a piece of gauze or cotton under the ingrown edge. This will help to lift the ingrown nail away from the skin. Your nail will, therefore, grow away from the fleshy finger and above the skin edge.

  1. Disinfect the affected area

You can visit your doctor to get a disinfectant or you can use the natural antibiotics and antifungals that are mentioned later in the post. The disinfectant plays a vital role in preventing or getting rid of infection causing the ingrown nail.

  1. Cover the fingernail with a bandage

This will foster the healing process and also help to avoid another injury from accidental bumps. It can also help prevent infection.

Best Natural Ways to Treat an Ingrown Nail

According to doctors on Medscape, in case you experience severe or intense pain, you should see your doctor since it could be a sign of a serious infection of the fingers. However, you can use the following simple natural remedies to treat ingrown nails:

Use Epsom Salt

The solution of Epsom salt is meant to get rid of any symptoms of ingrown fingernails by cleaning and disinfecting all the other sources of infections.

According to Mayo clinics, soaking hands and feet in Epsom salt solution help to get rid of a variety of foot and skin infections. This is because they have both anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties.

How to use it:

  • Add some amount of Epsom salt in water
  • Soak the hands in the solution for about 30nminutes
  • Pat your hands dry using a clean towel
  • Repeat the process around 3 times.

Vinegar and Tea Tree Oil for ingrown fingernail

According to the study published in 2016 by the Journal of Applied Microbiology, a combination of white vinegar, tea tree oil, and club soda can be more effective in treating ingrown nails.

How to use it:

  • Add some white vinegar to dilute tea tree oil
  • Soak the hands where you have ingrown nails
  • Allow the hands to stay in the solution for about 30 minutes
  • Remove the hands and pat them to dry
  • Repeat the process twice per day

Baby oil for ingrown nails

It helps to make the skin soft which is also important when you want to get rid of ingrown nails on the fingers. It also contains mineral substances essential proper nail growth and skin smoothness.

How to use it:

  • Take a small amount of baby oil and massage the site of the finger with ingrown nail
  • Use the clippers to clip off the ingrown nail
  • Use other remedies in case you are unable to see the ingrown nail on the finger

Castor oil for ingrown fingernail

It plays a vital role as far as the skin and the nails are a concern. It also helps in the alleviation of muscle tensions, spasm, and cramps. Massaging the skin around the site with the ingrown nail helps to remove all the toxic substance causing the infection.

How to use it:

  • Obtain a paste of castor oil added to baking soda
  • Apply the paste of the affected site on the fingernail
  • Cover the site with a bandage
  • Remove it after 2 hours and repeat the process again
  • Stop using the remedy in case you feel irritation

How to Prevent Ingrown Fingernails

The following are some of the prevention tips that can help you avoid future occurrence of ingrown nails whether on the toes or fingers. These measures include:

  • Keep your nails clean and dry.
  • Trim and file your nails neatly, without any sharp edges or spikes.
  • Keep the nail soft with regular miniaturization.
  • Avoid nail damage like biting nails

FURTHER REFERENCES

  1. Ingrown Thumb Nails: https://www.livestrong.com/article/315690-ingrown-thumb-nails/
  2. Ingrown Nails: Causes, Remedies, and Symptoms: https://www.enkiverywell.com/ingrown-fingernail.html
  3. Home Remedies for Ingrown Fingernails: https://organicdailypost.com/home-remedies-ingrown-fingernails/
  4. How to Treat an Ingrown Fingernail: https://www.livestrong.com/article/183336-home-remedy-for-a-red-swollen-fingernail/