how to speed up toenail falling off

Suppose you want to know How To Speed Up Toenail Falling Off, then this article is what you need. It contains what to do when your toenail falls off. Also, it includes stages of toenail growing back.

Losing a toenail can happen to anyone and for a number of reasons. Here’s how to make sure the new one arrives in good shape

If your toenail is falling off, you’re probably thinking “Help!” in sheer panic ???. When it comes to losing one of these little guys, it pays to take a chill pill and wait. Here’s everything you need to know about the super-common issue of losing a toenail, reasons why it could be happening, and what you can do about it.

How To Speed Up Toenail Falling Off

Reasons Why You’re Losing a Toenail

1. An infection

“A fungal infection occurs when there’s an overgrowth of fungi under or on the nail. Fungi love warm, moist environments, which is why they are so common on toenails,” explains Sonia Batra, M.D., a dermatologist and cohost on the show The Doctors. Symptoms of an infection include yellowing and streaking on the nail, a flaky nail surface, and crumbling nails. Left untreated, the nail can detach from the nail bed entirely, she explains. Yep, that means you’ll be dealing with a toenail falling off when you least expect it. (Wait, can you be allergic to gel polish?)

2. Trauma or injury

No infection? Any sort of trauma to the area—such as a heavy object landing on it or a hard stub—can also cause the toenail to fall off. “The nail will likely turn dark or black as blood builds up underneath it and puts pressure on it. It will likely fall off in a few weeks,” she says.

3. You’re an avid runner

It’s not uncommon to lose a toenail from logging lots of training miles. “The repetitious action of your toe hitting the front of the shoe can cause injury to the nail, and cause it to eventually fall off,” says Dr. Batra. “Distance runners training for marathons often experience this, as well as those who are running in ill-fitting shoes or whose toenails are too long.” (P.S. You should also be stretching your feet post-workout.)

How to Deal with a Toenail Falling Off

If it looks like your nail is headed for danger, resist the urge to tear it off. “Don’t rip off a broken toenail if it’s not ready,” says Dr. Batra. “If it’s barely attached and just hanging on, it should be fine to gently remove it with clippers.”

If you have doubts, though, it is best to leave the toenail falling off alone. Just file down any rough edges to keep them from catching on anything, treat any bleeding from the tear, clean the area, and make sure to monitor it for any signs of infection.

What to Do When Your Toenail Falls Off

“If your toenail falls off and it’s bleeding, the first thing to do is apply pressure to the area until it stops bleeding. Then clean the skin underneath with soap and water and apply an antibiotic ointment to prevent infection before covering the open wound with a bandage,” says Dr. Batra. Keep the area clean and covered until the wound closes and heals.

If there are open cuts or tears in the underlying skin from the toenail falling off, you should keep the skin cleaned and covered to prevent bacteria from entering and causing infection, she says. Once all open wounds have healed, it’s fine to leave the area uncovered—just make sure to keep it clean and dry.

It’s worth giving your toe a little extra TLC because you definitely don’t want an infection to spread to the new nail growing in.

“Redness/drainage/excessive pain could be signs of infection but not always,” says Said Atway, M.D., a podiatrist at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. “The consequences of a bacterial infection in the toe are the same as the consequences of any other skin/soft tissue infection in that the infection could spread and lead to further detriment of the surrounding tissue,” he says. Obviously, not great—so if you think it could be infected, go get it looked at by a doc.

stages of toenail growing back

After you’ve been through the misery of a toenail falling off, you’ll start to see a new nail coming in after about six weeks (yay!), but it’ll grow at your normal nail growth rate, says Dr. Batra. It usually takes about a year for a toenail to grow back out (from cuticle to tip). Here’s how to monitor the progress:

  • If you’re not sure why your toenail fell off in the first place, be sure to identify and fix the issue before the new one comes in, or else it could be susceptible to the same thing.
  • If you lost the old toenail to a fungal infection, treat the new nail with antifungal medication too.
  • Keep the new nail smooth and filed to keep ragged edges from catching on socks and breaking further.
  • Keep your feet dry, change your socks often, and avoid going barefoot in public locker rooms to prevent infections.
  • Wash your feet every day with soap and water and choose breathable socks.
  • If the new nail grows back crooked or damaged, see a doctor.
  • If there’s thickening or discoloration, keep the area clean and dry and use over-the-counter antifungal medications. If it doesn’t clear, see a doctor for stronger antifungal cream.

(Related: How to Treat Cracked Heels That Just Won’t Go Away)

What About Nail Polish?

Even though it’s tempting to swipe on some red polish and pretend everything is ~fine~, you should avoid painting the new nail if possible. “If you have a big event coming up, you can paint the new toenail,” says Dr. Batra. “However, nail polish prevents maximum airflow to the nail, so the best way to ensure healthy regrowth is to keep the nail free of polish until it’s fully grown in. (When your nail is back in business, try one of these good-for-you polishes.)

If the toenail is falling off from injury, painting the new one isn’t too risky. But if it’s falling off from a fungal infection, you’ll likely make the infection harder to treat, she warns. Not to mention, “acetone-containing nail polish remover can also weaken the new nail plate as it grows in and make it more susceptible to infection,” she says.

You’re probably fine painting the skin while you’re waiting for the new nail to grow in. “Nail polish won’t damage the skin as long as it is healthy and there are no open cuts, blisters, or infections,” says Dr. Batra.

How About an Acrylic Nail?

“If you lost your nail due to fungus, don’t get an acrylic toenail applied—it’ll make the problem worse as it provides a moist and warm safe haven for fungal infections,” says Dr. Batra. (Here’s what you need to know about shellac and gel manicures.)

If you lost it due to injury, however, an acrylic toenail is an option for a short-term fix (like a wedding), says Dr. Batra, but acrylic nails can interfere with optimal regrowth of the real nail. So consider stepping away from the nail glue and letting your body do its thing instead.

You can take some steps to heal from the inside-out too. “You can also take a biotin supplement, which helps strengthen nails and hair,” says Dr. Batra. “A healthy diet rich in protein may also help—the building blocks of keratin are found in foods like quinoa, lean meats, eggs, and yogurt,” she says. (Not to mention, those foods are great for your body, too.)

Otherwise, you just have to wait; there are no other effective quick fixes to get nails to grow faster, says Dr. Batra. You may hate having a naked toe for a few months, but it’s #worthit for the nail to grow in healthy, straight, and strong. Why put yourself through the pain of a toenail falling off again?

toenail regrowth after falling off

Caring For Your Toenails

Caring for your toenails is just as important as caring for your fingernails.  Whilst they might not be as immediately visible well cared for toenails make your feet more comfortable and prevent problems such as fungal nail infections.

Caring For Your Cuticles

Some aspects of caring for your toenails are very obvious, such as cutting them properly, others are less so.  The duticles on your toenails need just as much care as those on your fingernails. There is a temptation to just cut them away, this is not a good idea – better to leave them untouched.  Just as you would with your fingers, apply a good cuticle cream or foot cream and when they have softened push them gently back with a properly shaped stick. Don’t push them back too hard or too far or you can cause them to tear which can lead to infections.

Cutting Your Toenails

Nails should be cut straight across using well maintained sharp clippers.  The best time to clip them is when the nails are softer as they are following a bath or foot soak.  If you want them to be slightly curved then you should gently round off the edges using an emery board, but always cut straight and finish with an emery board. 

If you have difficulty cutting your toenails, or you have underlying foot conditions or fungal infection, it is better to have your nails cut by a Podiatrist.  Incorrect cutting will cause further problems which can be very painful.

How Long Should Toenails Be?

Ideally you should leave 1-2 millimetres of nail when you clip them.  Nails grow at around 2mm per month so cutting them every 4 – 8 weeks is ideal.  It can be difficult to trim your toenails properly.

Using Nail Polish

If you use nail polish then make sure you clean off the old polish properly using a gently remover, preferably without acetone which can be very drying for the nails.  Some nail polishes do stain toenails if they are left on for too long and cause discolouration. This is not harmful but can be a little unsightly. However you should let your toenails have a breather every now and then.  Ideally leave them free of polish for at least a week every now and then. This allows the nail to breathe and recover from the chemicals in the polish.

Toenail Fungus

Toenail fungus, which causes a thickening of the nails, is surprisingly common.  If you have this it is best to get it treated by your Podiatrist. Whilst there are over the counter treatments, most fungal infections are bedded deeply into the nail and need to be professionally treated.  Cutting nails that have a fungal infection is also not easy to do yourself and may cause further damage to the nail so is best done by a professional.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are often the result of poor trimming of your toenails.  Cutting them too short is one of the most common causes and can be extremely painful.  The nail can cut into the side of the nail bed causing infections which can be very dangerous for people with underlying conditions such as Diabetes.

Looking after your toenails does not take much effort but will reward you with feet that both look and feel good.

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