May 21, 2009

Home Remedies For Bruised Toe Nail

Posted in Category : Common Ailments

Nails are made out of the same material hair is composed of, that is keratin. Although considered to be part of the skin, nails have no nerve endings, which is why they do not hurt when they are cut. Human nails have evolved over the ages from claws and remain hardened and tough so as to withstand the daily wear and tear they are subjected to on a regular basis. Damaged nails can be caused by any type of trauma including trauma caused by closing doors and falling objects.

The color or texture of nails can be symptomatic of an underlying condition. For example, people suffering from psoriasis may exhibit small pits on the surface of their nails somewhat akin to oil spots. Brownish stripes on the nails may be a sign of AIDS or indicative of a melanoma growing beneath the nail.

Bruises to the nails may also be caused by hemorrhages from the capillaries of the nail bed. These take the appearance of small wooden splinters underneath the nail. Similar splinter hemorrhages that occur near the lunula which is the semi-circular white area at one end of the nail may be indicative of endocarditis, a bacterial indication of the heart.

An injury to a nail can be a very painful experience and this includes toe nails. A bruised toe nail can be an ugly sight and unless it receives prompt and proper treatment can end up as an ugly sight even after it has healed.

Home Remedies

Home remedies for a bruised toe nail begins with care for the injured portion along with an evaluation of the injury. The first step is to remove any accessories such as shoes, socks and rings from the injured foot. Any bleeding will need to be arrested by applying pressure on the bruised part with a soft, clean cloth.

After the bleeding has ceased, you will need to examine the injury and make an assessment. Attempt home care of your nail only in case the bruise occupies less than a quarter of the nail area and the toe is not bent or deformed. In such cases you will need to consult a doctor for appropriate treatment.

Place the affected toe in a bucket of ice to help decrease the swelling. Let it remain immersed in the ice bucket for up to ten minutes. This will also help to staunch any bleeding and may help to prevent the formation of blue-black nails. If the nail or surrounding skin is broken, it runs the risk of getting infected. To prevent this apply an antiseptic cream to the injured area.

Make a splint for the affected toenail to help keep it in place. If the nail is partially detached from the nail bed do not attempt to pull it out by yourself. Wrap the nail in a bandage to protect it from getting caught on socks. If the partially detached toe nail gets too uncomfortable, you will need to visit your doctor to have the separated portion of your toe nail removed.

Keep the injured foot elevated whenever possible as a means to lessen the throbbing you may experience. Take over-the-counter pain killers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil) to lessen the pain and inflammation.

Injured toenails can take many months to heal. If you notice any redness or swelling in the injured toe, it is important that you report it to your doctor immediately.

Traditional herbalists swear by many natural remedies that when applied to the injured nail, will help it to heal faster. A few of these suggested natural remedies include aloe vera gel, honey and coconut oil. However, these remedies should only be attempted in case there is no sign of pus formation and only after consulting your doctor.