Published on: April 14, 2021

Can I Drive After Ingrown Toenail Surgery?

Following ingrown toenail surgery, it's important to adhere to some simple guidelines for a quick, painless recovery.

After the local anaesthetic wears off, it's likely that you'll experience some pain. Listening to the aftercare instructions will help minimise the overall discomfort. Still, there are some potential issues which you might face after you've had your surgery.

Avoiding Complications

Driving after ingrown toenail surgery is highly risky and should be avoided. Anesthetic isn't going to wear out immediately after the procedure and this can hinder your driving ability.

In the first couple of days, you should restrict unnecessary physical activity as much as possible. On the day of the toenail surgery, rest your leg, ideally raising it above heart level to reduce possible swelling or throbbing. The first dressing change should be no more than 2-3 days after your surgery. After the first redressing appointment, it should be changed at least once per day or according to your podiatrists instructions.

Infections are a possible complication. To reduce the risk, soak the wound 2-3 times a day in a mix of lukewarm water and epsom or table salt. The wound shouldn't be underwater for more than five minutes. Dry it well afterwards and apply a new dressing. If the pain or swelling gets worse, contact your doctor immediately.

Wound discharge is a normal occurrence after an ingrown toenail removal. It's normal for both blood and fluid to soak up the bandage a bit and this is nothing to worry about. Wear sandals or other roomy footwear at least a week after the surgery to prevent complications.

To stop ingrown toenails from recurring, you should wear properly fitting shoes. Trim the nails straight across the top of the nail, always using clean instruments.

Estimated Recovery Time

Although recovery differs from person to person, most people can usually return to their everyday activities after a couple of days to a week. During this time, you'll apply dressings and be advised to take time off of sport, work or school as needed.

Heavy physical activity, such as sports, is usually possible after about two weeks of rest. For some people, complete readjustment could take up to eight weeks. Complications such as infections, prolonged swelling and bleeding can hinder recovery progress.

During the healing process, you'll go through regular appointments with your doctor to provide a summary of your progress. It's important to report any concerns or complications that you're experiencing. The quicker it can be treated, the less possibility of more serious problems occurring. Also, the problematic toe is going to be monitored for any potential nail regrowth.

Seek Professional Advice

If you have any questions or concerns, it's always best to check in with a professional. Whether its toenail bracing or toenail surgery, all of our procedures use top of the range equipment and techniques, providing the least amount of discomfort and quickest recovery time. Give us a call on (02) 9964 0099 or send an e-mail to Our team will be happy to provide a detailed answer regarding surgery appointments and different procedures.

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