How to Numb Your Toe and Remove an Ingrown Toenail

If you’ve ever had the misfortune of dealing with an ingrown toenail, you know how incredibly painful it can be. It’s like a tiny, sharp pebble has decided to set up camp in your toe. Ouch! But don’t worry, you’re not alone in this. Today, I’m going to walk you through a simple solution to help numb your toe and get rid of that pesky ingrown toenail.

We’ll be talking about using numbing creams or oils and soaking your foot in warm water, both easy and effective methods that you can do right in the comfort of your home. 

Numbing Creams and Oils

When you’re dealing with an ingrown toenail, one of the first things you want to tackle is the pain. Numbing creams or oils can be your best buddies in this situation. These won’t treat any underlying infection, but they can surely provide relief from the agony.

Imagine you accidentally stubbed your toe on the edge of your bed. Ouch! You’d probably reach for something to soothe the pain, right? Numbing cream works similarly, but it’s specifically designed to numb the area.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Start by cleaning the affected toe with mild soap and water. Pat it dry gently with a clean towel.
  2. Apply a small amount of numbing cream or oil directly to the ingrown toenail. You can find these over-the-counter at your local pharmacy.
  3. Massage the cream or oil into the area, ensuring it’s absorbed properly.
  4. Wait for about 20-30 minutes, and you’ll begin to feel that your toe is getting comfortably numb.

Pro Tip: Be sure to follow the instructions on the product you’re using, and never overdo it. Too much numbing cream can lead to unwanted side effects.

Soak Your Foot in Warm Water

Now that we’ve taken the edge off the pain with numbing cream, it’s time to prepare your toe for the ingrown toenail removal process. Soaking your foot in warm water is a fantastic way to soften the nail and make it easier to work with.

Think of your toenail like a stubborn carrot in a soup that needs a bit of simmering to become tender. Soaking your foot is like the simmering part; it makes the nail more pliable and less likely to cause pain.

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Fill a basin or a large bowl with comfortably warm water. Not too hot, just the right temperature that you can tolerate.
  2. If you want to boost the effectiveness, add a tablespoon of Epsom salt to the water. This can help reduce pain and swelling.
  3. Sit back and relax! Place your affected foot in the water and let it soak for about 15-20 minutes.

Pro Tip: While you’re soaking your foot, grab a book or your favorite TV show to pass the time. It’ll make the experience much more enjoyable.

Removing the Ingrown Toenail

By now, your toe should be feeling nice and numb, thanks to the cream or oil, and your nail should be softened from the warm water soak. It’s time to tackle the ingrown toenail itself.

Picture this: You’ve got a splinter in your finger, and you need to remove it. You wouldn’t just yank it out, right? You’d want to make sure it’s as painless as possible. That’s exactly the approach we’re taking with the ingrown toenail.

Here’s what to do:

  1. Take a clean and disinfected pair of tweezers or nail clippers.
  2. Gently lift the edge of the ingrown toenail. Be patient, and don’t force it. If it’s not coming up easily, soak your foot for a few more minutes and try again.
  3. Once you’ve lifted the nail edge, carefully insert a tiny piece of cotton or dental floss under the lifted nail. This helps keep the nail from growing back into the skin.
  4. After you’ve placed the cotton or floss, apply an antibiotic ointment to prevent infection.
  5. Bandage up your toe securely, and you’re all set!

Pro Tip: Remember, patience is key. Don’t rush the process, and if you’re having trouble, it’s always a good idea to consult a healthcare professional.


Voila! You’ve successfully numbed your toe and removed that pesky ingrown toenail. It might not have been the most pleasant experience, but you’ve conquered it like a champ.

Now, I’d love to hear from you. Have you ever had to deal with an ingrown toenail? What methods did you use to relieve the pain and remove it? Share your experiences and tips in the comments below. Let’s help each other out and make this journey a little less painful for everyone.

And remember, if you have any doubts or if the pain persists, don’t hesitate to reach out to a  doctor. 

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