How to go toe-to-toe with ingrown toenails

By Dr. Rosalynd Brackens

Your teenager may be keeping you on your toes these days. But then in addition to the standard pushbacks and complaints, you begin hearing about toe pain.

Toe pain, really? But what you see is enough to make your own toes curl. It’s an ingrown toenail.

At Cincinnati Children's Liberty, Mason and Springdale Primary Care, we can treat your teen's ingrown toenail — saving the wait and expense of seeing a specialist.

An ingrown toenail causes pain, redness, drainage and swelling.

If the ingrown toenail looks to be in the early stages, you can treat it at home for a few days with an anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen and warm soaks.

But if there’s no improvement or there’s already quite a bit of swelling, let Cincinnati Children’s Liberty, Mason and Springdale Primary Care take some pain out of the situation. Instead of waiting to see a specialist – and paying specialist fees – now you can make an appointment with Dr. Garrett Searcy.

How Dr. Searcy treats an ingrown toenail

Dr. Searcy received specialized training during his residency to treat ingrown toenails. With a simple 15- to 20-minute procedure, he’ll fix the problem, not just treat the symptoms by:

  1. Injecting lidocaine shots to numb the toe area.
  2. Removing the ingrown side of the nail and any infection surrounding it.

“While I do provide numbing medicine, this is a painful procedure to have,” says Dr. Searcy. “But the good news is that it takes care of the issue right away, and your child will feel much better by the next day.”

For more information

At Cincinnati Children’s Liberty, Mason and Springdale Primary Care, we’re here for you and your family every step of the way. Check out our additional website Resources and follow us on Facebook.


An ingrown toenail is a common condition — usually affecting the big toe — that happens when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the flesh instead of over it.