Ingrown Toenails: Prevention Tips and Treatment

Published: October 4, 2021

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Ingrown toenails, or onychogryphosis, occur when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the flesh. Generally, the big toe is affected.(1) It’s a common problem, affecting some 3 million people in the U.S. each year.(1)

Ill-fitting shoes that are too tight around the toes can cause an ingrown toenail. These could be soccer cleats, or even high heels that put more pressure on the front of the foot. Any activity that causes repetitive pressure on the toes puts a person at risk for an ingrown toenail.(2)

Young athletes who may wear an older sibling’s hand-me-down soccer cleats (that don’t fit properly) may be at risk for an ingrown toenail. So can older soccer players who prefer a tight-fitting cleat. And both may not share with their parents about toe pain, because they don’t want to miss a game. Waiting too long can lead to an infection that is more difficult to treat.(3)

A leading health clinic offers these tips to prevent ingrown toenails:(4)

  • Avoid cutting nails too short and cutting unevenly at the corners. Cut straight across.
  • Make sure socks and shoes fit properly. You should be able to wiggle your toes easily in your shoes.
  • Avoid trauma to the toe area. If you participate in sports where your toes get a lot of action, try to go barefoot for an hour or two afterward.

While most ingrown toenails can be treated at home without surgery, in serious cases patients require a surgical procedure called a matrixectomy.(5) The most commonly-used agent for chemical matrixectomy is phenol. According to a medical journal for family physicians, phenol chemical ablation causes minimal bleeding, allows the patient to return to normal activities in a few days, and has a reoccurrence rate of less than 5%.(6)

Edge Pharma offers Phenol 89% in a 3mL bottle to qualified providers. Our online system makes ordering quick and easy. We are currently licensed to sell to all US states except Alabama and Virginia. 


(1) Mayo Clinic, Ingrown Toenails,
(2) Shiffer, E., Runners World, What Every Runner Should Know About Ingrown Toenails,
(3) American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, Foot Health Facts, Ouch! Young Soccer Players Sidelined by Painful Toes,
(4) Cleveland Clinic, Ingrown Toenails,
(5) Medical News Today, What to Know About Ingrown Toenail Surgery,
(6)  Mayeaux, E.J. Jr. MD, Carter, C. MD, Murphy, T. MD, American Family Physician, Ingrown Toenail Management