Using natural remedies like essential oils is a favorite of people who want to avoid chemicals and prescription medications. While these remedies can be useful in certain situations, like for aromatherapy, they will not be able to treat every condition. Ingrown toenails are a condition that should be treated by a licensed podiatrist since they can get worse and more painful very quickly. Additionally, many home remedies for ingrown toenails are unsafe and can even make the condition worse.

Using essential oils to treat ingrown toenails is risky for a couple of reasons. For one, most essential oils are very concentrated and can actually irritate the skin of the toe when applied. Some essential oils, like tea tree oil, may have mild antifungal or antibacterial properties. However, they are definitely not enough to prevent an infection from forming in your ingrown. They are also definitely not strong enough to treat an infection that has already formed. This is especially true when they are diluted in water for warm water soaks. However, soaking your feet in warm water with tea tree oil can help soften the skin of the ingrown toenail while providing very mild antifungal/antibacterial properties. This will help relieve the symptoms of the ingrown and may make it easier to deal with while waiting to be treated by a podiatrist. 

If you have an ingrown toenail, home remedies like essential oils will not be enough to cure it. If you leave off getting medical treatment, the ingrown toenail is likely to get worse no matter what you try at home. A licensed podiatrist will be able to diagnose your ingrown toenail and discuss effective treatment options that you can do to actually be free of the ingrown. To schedule your consultation with a podiatrist, give us a call at (424)-299-4627 or visit our website for more information.