Ingrown Toenails

At the Sussex Foot Centre, we treat ingrown toenails on a daily basis. An ingrown nail is a nail that curves into the skin. The medical term is onychocryptosis. It may or may not be painful, and may or may not cause infection. An ingrown nail that causes infection or inflammation is called a paronychia. Ingrown toenails that cause inflammation or infection are usually very painful.



  • Trauma or any damage to the nail or the nail bed can result in ingrown nails.
  • Microtrauma: Repetitive pressure from shoes. Runners, tennis, rugby and football players commonly have ingrown toenails.
  • Blunt trauma: dropping something on your toe or kicking a chair.
  • Shoes: Especially narrow shoes which are too small, place pressure on the big toenail, resulting in repetitive microtrauma.
  • Fungal Nails: causes changes in shape of the nail and the nail bed, sometimes resulting in ingrown toenails.
  • Genetics: some people are born with nails which naturally turn in at the sides and typically develop ingrown nails very early in life.


Conservative Care vs. Nail Surgery

Conservative approaches to therapy are appropriate for initial management of ingrown toenail. This includes chiropody to try and take the pressure off the side of the skin by cutting down the side of the nail in a controlled way by your Podiatrist. When conservative therapy fails for initial management of ingrown toenails, surgical treatment may be appropriate.

Nail Surgery (Please see the right hand side of the page for our video of a recent surgery).

When is Ingrowing Toenail Treatment Necessary?

  • Failure of conservative care to resolve the condition
  • Recurring ingrowing nails
  • Painful involuted nails  (i.e. chronic curled-in nails).
  • Infected in-growing nails
  • Deformed nail shape
  • Thickened fungal nails which can cause pressure on the toe

What do we do on the day of the procedure?

  1. The procedure entails local anaesthetic being put either side of the big toe to make the toe go numb, so you won’t be able to feel a thing
  2. The toe is then washed and an antiseptic is applied all over the area to minimise the risk of infection
  3. The procedure differs slightly depending on the nail pathology, however, it usually involves removing part of, or all of the nail
  4. Once the offending nail is removed, a chemical called phenol is applied; this is what stops the nail from growing back and causing problems again
  5. The nail is then dressed with a bulky dressing to prevent any further trauma and to minimise the risk of infection
  6. We get you back the following day to redress the area

Toenail Removal Aftercare
We see you between 3-5 times after this to redress and check progress; you will be issued with all your dressings for this period and instructed on how to redress it yourself. Usually healing time is 3-6 weeks but some nails can take longer

Key Points


  • No skin is cut at all.
  • There will be NO regrowth of the nail.
  • Patients can go back to work the next day or even on the same day, depending on occupation
Ingrown toenail

How Can We Help?

Follow the form below to get through directly to one of our Podiatrists at the practice or to request an appointment.

Or call — 01444 453874

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34 Sussex Road, Haywards Heath, Sussex RH16 4EA

We are trusted by our clients

Great, friendly service. Would happily recommend.
I was in so much pain with my right foot because I got a cyst in it and just found Sussex Foot Centre in google and called them for booking appointment. The person I talked with was so helpful and they offered appointment on the same day. Everybody working at this place were so friendly and experienced. At my first appointment I had a consultation with ultrasound scan and clearly described me the next steps what would solve my problem and it really reassured me because I was so scared and tired from the pain and for long waiting time on GP referrals. For the treatment, I got an appointment on next day (again so fast!!) and already when I came out from the Centre could walk much better and the pain disappeared. I am so grateful for them and still going back for regular checking and advices. I also having issues with my nails too and I am sure I could get a quick solution on those issue too! Everybody having issue with their foot please don't hesitate to get in touch with Sussex Foot Centre - just give a try and I am sure you will don't disappoint! For me honestly was a life-saver. Thank you so much!
Tundi Bodi
Tundi Bodi
Highly recommended due to efficient, spotless, courteous staff with on time treatment. You could take a good step forward by using this team.
Brian Beesley
Brian Beesley
Excellent podiatrist- knowledgeable, professional, caring and quick. Thanks!
Murdo Guy
Murdo Guy
I can't thank this gentlemen enough. Pain in my foot had effected my whole life, no running, no water aerobics no tai chi and most of all no work as I'm a cook. Scan first visit, problem located plan worked out, return week later double appointment as we live hour away. Another scan, walk on treadmil, insole made...meanwhile he explained everything, so I could understand. I. Very impressed with the whole experience, and would recommend them to anyone
lyn murphy
lyn murphy
I have had toe nail surgeries with the Sussex Foot Centre and both times have had very positive experiences. Jon provided excellent treatment and care during the surgeries and in the follow up post surgeries. Jon and Thomas were professional and friendly and they have been so flexible and accommodating with scheduling appointments, as well as providing quick responses by email and telephone. I would recommend the Sussex Foot Centre. Thank you so much!
Josephine Zamat
Josephine Zamat
Jon Collins and team provide excellent patient focused, customer focused care. I have not met a better podiatrist than Jon in over 30 years in healthcare management and 10 years as a patient. As you step into reception you are welcomed with both smile and greeting. Even though it is a busy practice, changes in appointment are politely and readily managed. Forgetfulness and a missed appointment are taken in their stride! I attended first as an ”emergency” patient, three years ago. I was at the local hospital and the Sussex Foot Centre was suggested. I was seen the same afternoon. After months of hobbling, Jon treated my foot with professional skill, exuding warm reassurance. Regular attendance and treatment ensured rapid improvement. The specially created insole proved to be a boon. I have remained with Jon as my podiatrist for three years now. I can think of no reason why I should go elsewhere. I have no hesitancy in recommendinng him. When my GP asked me why I go over to Haywards Heath, my reply was that he is the best.
Malcolm Boyland
Malcolm Boyland
The treatment and service from Sussex Foot Clinic was excellent and I would highly recommend them to anyone. Over the counter and home remedies had failed miserably. Investing in some professional treatment and following it through diligently was well worth it. Thank you Jon.
E M Drake
E M Drake
I found The Sussex Foot Centre via Google and what a find! I started seeing Jon last summer with painful Plantar Fasciitis in both feet. With Jon’s knowledge, non invasive treatment and orthotics, I am so grateful to him for my pain free feet now! Jon and his team are so helpful, with total professionalism and extensive knowledge - I have learnt so much! Tom on reception is also so very friendly and efficient. Keep up the amazing work you all do.
Lisa Bailey
Lisa Bailey
A first class service. A friendly, highly professional medical approach . I have had effective, pain-free treatment for my footcare. Highly commended.
Ollie Swan
Ollie Swan