Many times when we are confronted with an infected ingrown toenail, patients have already been started on an antibiotic or ask if we can put them on one to take care of the painful, inflamed ingrown toenail. While this is sometimes necessary to combat infection, the problem lies deeper.
Everyone has bacteria on their toenails. It is when the nail spicule pokes into the surrounding skin that this is a direct route for the bacteria to enter and cause an infection. While an antibiotic will take care of the established infection, it isn’t until the ingrown piece of nail is removed that the hole can close up and stop the route of entrance for the bacteria.