Ingrown nails can occur on the fingernails but are typically far more common on the toenails. With ingrowns, they usually affect the sides of the big toe. The nail will begin to grow into the flesh of your skin along the side of the nail and can often lead to an infection. If you have developed an infection you can likely treat it with antibiotics. Should the infection persist and the problem return you may need to seek further treatment in the form of removal or surgery. During this process, you would need to either have a part or the whole nail removed depending on the severity.
There are a few preventative measures you can take before you get to such a point. Firstly it is important to cut your nails properly. This means the nails should be cut straight across and keeping them longer at the sides, so refrain from cutting down the sides. If you find that you cannot cut your own toenails due to thickening or other problems, contact your doctor or podiatrist to assist with the issue further since you may have another infection occurring. Next, make sure that your shoes fit correctly and have room for the toes so that the toes are not too snug in the shoe. Wearing open-toed sandals is recommended when you do not need to wear closed toed. You should also wear comfortable slippers at home to avoid putting pressure on the toes as well. Following these measures will also help with preventing the risk of bunions.
By following a few hygienic steps you can prevent an ingrown toenail from forming.