Published on: April 14, 2021

What is an ingrown toenail?

Ingrown toenails can be one of life's unnecessary annoyances. Often, they can progress from a subtle annoyance to pain that limits footwear options and disrupts sleep, work or activity levels.

An Ingrown toenail is a broad term that can encompass two main types of conditions:

  1. Non-infected ingrown toenail: A nail with over-curvature that chronically presses into skin. There is usually no break in the skin and no infection associated with this type of ingrown toenail. There is typically constant pressure felt until the side of the nail is trimmed away, which usually gives temporary relief, until it grows back and starts pressing into the sides again. This type of ingrown toenail is typically seen in adults, very common in the 40+ year old age group.
  2. Infected ingrown toenail: this is the classic ingrown toenail that occurs when the nail creates a break in the adjacent skin leading to redness, swelling and pain due to an infection. Commonly there will also be pus and granulation tissue forming around the nail edge. Granulation tissue appears as an overgrowth of red skin and generally gets bigger the longer the ingrown toenail is left untreated. This type of condition is very common in kids, especially active kids. However, it can affect anyone at any age. This type of ingrown toenail can be classified into 3 stages depending on severity.

Depending on the type (and stage) of ingrown toenail that you have, the treatment advice and expected outcomes may vary significantly. For more information about treatment options please read through our website. If you have any specific questions you can email We are proud to provide Sydney ingrown toenail treatment that is based on extensive experience and evidence-based practice.

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