How to Cut Toenails to Prevent Ingrown Nails?

Have you wondered how to cut toenails to prevent ingrown nails? This is a frequently asked question by patients in a podiatric clinic. Perhaps you already have an ingrown toenail or know how debilitating it can be once you have one.


Ingrown toenails are a typical nail problem that you can see on the side of your toenails. The nails grow improperly to the point that it pierces into the flesh. As a result, patients would see swelling, pus, and redness and feel pain.


If left untreated, ingrown toenails may lead to bone infection, which can cause open sores, foot ulcers, and tissue decay.


What Causes Ingrown Toenails?

Everyone is at risk of getting ingrown toenails due to the following reasons:



Some people were born with toenail issues, such as having a naturally curved toenail, making them more prone to getting ingrown. Podiatrists treat curved toenails with nail braces.


Tight Footwear

Wearing tight footwear is a common reason people get ingrown toenails. It is usually the big toes that get affected by it. Wearing tight socks or shoes can crowd your toes, causing pressure that pushes your big toenail into the flesh at either side of your toe.


Improper Toenail Trimming

Improper trimming of toenails is the most common cause of ingrown for many people. Even if you do not have this problem, eliminate the risk by properly cutting your toenails to prevent any ingrown from occurring.


3 Pointers on How to Cut Toenails to Prevent Them From Becoming Ingrown

If you do not want to get ingrown toenails, you need to learn how to cut your toenails properly, like a real professional. You can do it by considering the following:


Do Not Remove Your Cuticles

Leave your cuticles alone as you clean your nails as they provide a natural barrier against infection.


Use the Right Clippers

Use the highest quality toenail clippers. Using cheap nail clippers is one way that can cause you to cut your toenails improperly, which can result in a painful ingrown.


That’s why you should avoid using fingernail clippers on your toenails. Even if your fingernail clippers seem capable of handling thicker nails, their blades’ short radius is harsh for your big toenails.


Do Not Cut Too Short

Do not cut your nails short, following their natural curve and exposing some of the toenail beds. You should only cut the part of your nails that does not touch the skin as your nails provide natural protection for your toes.


When cutting your nails, trim straight across. Make several small cuts to achieve this.


Although you can trim your nails at home like a pro, note that toenail cutting for those with diabetes and lower-limb circulation issues is different. If you have one of the said conditions, consult a podiatrist and ask for a professional nail-trimming service.



Like a famous adage says, “Prevention is better than cure.” While your toenails are still healthy, learn how to cut your toenails properly to eliminate your risk of ingrown. Prioritise the wellness of your feet over what looks pleasing to the eye.


If your toenails have already become ingrown, it won’t go away by itself. Even if you think you have successfully trimmed it out yourself, it will keep coming back and might worsen.


If you want to stop getting ingrown toenails, do not attempt to get rid of them yourself. Even now that you already know how to trim your nails properly.


Ingrown toenails require proper treatment and intervention. A podiatrist is a foot specialist who offers professional trimming services and can help you fix your ingrown toenail permanently. An ingrown toenail centre in Chatswood, such as The Footwork Clinic, is the best place where you can go if you have this issue.

The pain brought by ingrown nails is crippling enough, let alone the possible complications you can get from it. Visit us today and have those ingrown toenails removed.

Director | Rehabilitation or Rehab / Sports Podiatrist,

Foot Mobilisation & Trigenics® Lower Limb Practitioner, Movement Restoration Coach (MRC™), Strength and Conditioning Coach

Is Pain Impacting Your Life?

You don’t need to live like this. Let us help you!

The Footwork Clinic, situated in Chatswood on Sydney’s North Shore and Sydney CBD, is there to help should you have an injury or condition that you think would benefit from heat or ice treatment. They offer advanced manual therapies and a holistic and corrective care approach, with a proven track record of success in resolving acute and chronic conditions, and they will gladly offer advice to get you on the road to recovery as soon as possible.

For further information, visit the The Footwork Clinic – Leading Sports, Podiatry, Foot And Lower Limb Corrective Services to book online, or call Mark Lin or his friendly team on +61 2 9131 6891.

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The information contained in this guide is provided in good faith and is not intended to be nor is it to be used as a substitute for any sort of professional, medical or podiatric advice. An accurate diagnosis can only be made following personal consultation with a podiatrist. Any users should always seek the advice of their podiatrist, or other qualified healthcare providers before commencing any treatment.

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