Zest Podiatry & Physio - Why wait till it hurts

Zest Podiatry & Physio

Why wait till it hurts

our solutions
nail trauma

Nail trauma over Christmas break

Useful tips to treat nail trauma / damage at home before you come into see us. In the event that you damage your nail we can treat you here at Zest Podiatry.

If you drop a heavy object on your nail, or you have been wearing footwear/doing activities that have damaged your nail, we can help with some basic nail first aid.


We advised daily salt water bathing.

  • 2-3 minutes in warm water with salt.
  • If you have an open wound please wear a breathable dressing.
  • Change daily unless the dressing becomes moist. If moist change more often.
  • If healing time is longer than normal for you, seek further advice.

Types of nail trauma

Split nails

If your nail has split and can be trimmed without too much discomfort, we advise you to do this. Gently clean and dry the nail and cover with a sterile plaster. You can shower/bathe but remove the plaster and replace with a fresh plaster each time.

If you are unable to trim the nail we advise that you apply some tape across the split of the nail to prevent further splitting. When removing/replacing the tape, pull off gently in the direction of the split.

Blackened/bruised nails

If your nail has become bruised your nail plate will have a black/bluish colour.

If this bruising has occurred and the nail bed is extremely painful and throbbing, you may need to have the nail seek medical advice to relieve the swelling under the nail.

Depending on the trauma your nail may partially or fully fall off the nail bed. If this happens, clean and dry the toe, and apply a sterile plaster daily. If the toe itself remains sore and is red/darker in tone and swells – please see medical advice as there may be a secondary infection.

Ingrown toenails

If your nail trauma has become ingrown and has created inflammation and/or infection in the surrounding skin, you need to take some action.

Soak the toe in warm salty water to bathe and cleanse the nail and skin. Apply a sterile plaster over the ingrown toenail.

If it is easy to see the nail that has become ingrown and is near the top of the  toe, you could try trimming the nail without trimming too far down the side of the skin. Do not rip the nail.

If the ingrown nail has caused the toe to become red/darker in tone, swollen, painful and is oozing pus you should seek medical advice in order to get some antibiotics

Make an appointment with us in order that we can treat it effectively and give you some advice about nail trauma, care and long term treatments such as Nail Surgery.

Discoloured nail trauma

If you have a nails(s) that is an unusual colour, you should book an appointment with us to check and give you the best advice regarding treatment.

What shall I do next for my nail trauma

Monitor the nail trauma and its progress. Taking pictures with good light for you to look back on is useful for you and any clinician you may see. If the toe does not improve or causes pain then please do book an appointment with us below.

We close at Easter and Christmas. If you require further advice or guidance during this time please contact NHS 111

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