Treatment of inflammation of the nail bed

Synonyms in a broader sense

Onychia, Oncychitis, Onychia subungualis, Onychia maligna, Panaritium paraunguale, Paronychia, "circulation"

English: Felon, Whitlow, Onychia

Which doctor should I go to?

A Inflammation of the nail bed is not only extremely painful but should also be taken seriously as the inflammatory agent otherwise spread further and surrounding structures afflicted with. In order to enable an adequate treatment of the nail bed inflammation, it is important to which doctor the patient goes. If the inflammation is slight, in most cases it is sufficient to start with Family doctor to go. This can then decide how far the inflammation has progressed and which treatment suits best. In addition, the family doctor can use the pus a sample remove it, send it to a laboratory and then have the pathogen determined and then either a antiviral, one antibacterial or one antifungal Initiate therapy.

If the inflammation is already well advanced and threatens to spread to the surrounding tissue, the family doctor may write a direct referral to a surgeon, who will then remove the nail under anesthesia and allow the pus to drain away. A dermatologist can also be consulted in the early stages, but a family doctor is usually sufficient, as he can already give important tips and assessments.

Treatment of inflammation of the nail bed

There are many different approaches to treating nail bed inflammation (nail bed inflammation treatment).

A good treatment for nail bed inflammation shows baths with warm water, which should therefore be done several times a day. This loosens the horny layer and any pus that may be present can drain better. After the bath, the skin around the nail and the nail itself should be carefully patted dry and then put on with cream, preferably with a disinfectant ointment such as Betaisodona.

There are also various home remedies that reduce symptoms and reduce the rate of infection. These include soapy water, tea tree water or a mixture of horseradish and honey. Some medicinal plants, such as arnica, chamomile, onions or savoy cabbage, also have an anti-inflammatory effect. They can be used either as a bath additive, tea, tincture, compress or in ointments and creams (see: arnica ointment).

If the infection of the nail has not disappeared (or at least has gotten significantly better) within 3 days or is even noticeable by increasing swelling and pain, a doctor should be consulted. He or she can then prescribe anti-inflammatory agents (anti-inflammatory drugs) for stubborn purulent areas, which make it easier for the pus to drain (nail bed inflammation treatment). There are also disinfectant drugs and antiseptic ointments. The additional administration of antibiotics (in the form of tablets) is only necessary when the inflammation spreads to the adjacent lymphatic system. Then penicillins, such as oxacillin, are usually used, which are particularly effective against the staphylococcus bacterial group.

What can you do about the pus?

In general, anti-inflammatory ointments, for example with chamomile, or baths have a supportive effect on the healing process. Ammonium bituminosulfonate is an anti-inflammatory agent that can be applied to excessively festering areas. Disinfecting baths can also be recommended, which at the same time loosen the cornea somewhat and thus allow the pus to drain off better. Since pus is mostly made up of bacteria, antibacterial agents can help. If the inflammation is more advanced and a lot of pus has accumulated, it may be necessary to open the relevant area with a small incision so that the pus can drain away. However, this should never be done by the person concerned. In this case it is advisable to consult a doctor and have the appropriate treatment clarified.

Read more on the topic: Pull ointment

How long is the treatment duration?

Depending on how pronounced the inflammation is, the healing process can take different lengths of time. In the case of mild inflammation of the nail bed, treatment with ointments and baths can show their effects within a few days and eliminate the inflammation. If the inflammation is more severe and may require minor surgery, it can take several weeks to months to heal. Correspondingly, if an inflammation of the nail bed is detected early and treated immediately, the healing time is reduced.

If the purulent nail bed inflammation does not subside by itself, a roentgen It may be helpful to see how far the infection has gotten.

In no case should a layperson try to cut open the focus of inflammation in which the pus has accumulated, as this is not without danger. Is the infection so severe that one operative treatment If necessary, this procedure is carried out by the doctor under local anesthesia, whereby the wound cavity is disinfected and the pus is then drained to the outside. After the operation, the patient must have one for some time Plaster splint wear (nail bed inflammation treatment).

Depending on the cause, it is of course also necessary to treat the actual underlying problem. That is, for example, being more careful with the manicure or at Handling detergents to be or, in the case of a diabetic, to adjust the sugar correctly.

Treatment on the toe

Inflammation of the nail bed can be extremely annoying and painful, especially on the toe, and should therefore be treated immediately.

A Inflammation of the nail bed on the toe is extremely uncomfortable and painful and therefore requires adequate treatment. Before the treatment, it is important to have any kind of pedicure to refrain, because that Filing and paint the nails only aggravate the inflammatory process in case of doubt. Depending on the pathogen, the nail bed inflammation on the toe should also be antibacterial, antiviral or with antifungal Means (Antifungal agents) be treated.

In addition, the inflammatory process should also be inhibited. This is often enough for a slight inflammation of the nail bed on the toe twice a day, anti-inflammatory chamomile bathwhich each for 20 minutes should be applied. Also disinfecting iodine baths are possible. Then the toe should be covered with a disinfectant ointment be rubbed in. Here one is recommended Betaisodana ointmentwhich should be rubbed onto the inflamed area of ​​the toe after every bath, not too thickly. It is always important to discuss the treatment with the respective doctor in order not to worsen the inflammation!
It may be that, depending on the pathogen, different ointments are prescribed. If you have a bacterial infection, getting a Ointment containing antibiotics to use, in some cases the antibiotic should also be taken orally (swallowed).
If you have a fungal infection antifungal ointments often used to help with a viral infection Cytostatic ointments how Acyclovir. However, it may be difficult to treat nail bed inflammation on the toe because the pus cannot be removed. In this case a doctor should (never the patient himself!) the Pus bladder under local anesthesia prick, remove the nail and drain the pus.

What do you do against wild meat?

Wild meat can be treated in the early stages by the person concerned, for example with baths. In disinfecting baths, the cornea is slightly dissolved and can peel off. In order for the healing process of wild meat to be well supported, tight shoes should not be worn and the nails should be trimmed correctly. For example, nail corners should be filed slightly round. If the symptoms do not go away, a podiatrist (Podiatrist) can be visited. In severe cases, wild meat must be surgically removed. If the nail has become heavily ingrown, it may be necessary to remove part of the nail as well.

Read more on the topic: Surgery for a nail bed inflammation, ingrown toenail - what works best?

What should be considered during treatment during pregnancy?

Inflammation of the nail bed (onychia) in the pregnancy can be very annoying and uncomfortable. In order to adequately treat nail bed inflammation during pregnancy, women should ensure that they wash and clean their feet or hands at least once a day, depending on the symptoms. It is important here that the inflammation is washed out and that possible pus Will get removed. Best to disinfecting baths take to counteract the inflammation. This is an example of this Iodine bath or a bath with Octenisept on. Then the foot should be creamed. There is one above all else here Betaisodona ointment on. This also has a disinfectant effect and helps to counteract the inflammatory process. It is important to use various disinfectants not to mix with each other. If you bathe your fingers or toes in a solution with Octenisept, no Betaisodona ointment should be smeared on the skin afterwards. Instead, a perfume-free cream be used. Or you can alternatively wash your feet / hands in a bath with soapy water and then treat the inflamed area with the Betaisodana ointment. It is also important for the treatment of nail bed inflammation during pregnancy that manicure and pedicure be prevented for now.

What should be considered when treating nail bed inflammation in babies?

Inflammation of the nail bed in babies is not uncommon, for example children often injure themselves when playing. In most cases, inflammation of the nail bed is not dangerous in babies, but since babies do not yet have a strong immune system and the inflammation can spread quickly in the body, it is particularly important to see a doctor if the baby is infected.

The symptoms of nail bed inflammation in babies are similar to those in adults. The corresponding area is reddened and overheated. Because of the pain, the baby cries a lot. If pus forms, an abscess (pus cavity) can develop. In severe cases, where the inflammation spreads throughout the body, you may experience a fever, extreme tiredness, and chills.

Usually, however, treatment with antiseptic ointments and baths is sufficient. If the inflammation is more severe, the doctor may prescribe an antibiotic. A surgical procedure in which the relevant area is opened through a small incision may also rarely be necessary. In order to prevent advanced inflammation, a doctor should be consulted as early as possible in order to receive appropriate treatment.

To prevent inflammation of the nail bed, the baby should not wear shoes that are too tight and the nails should be trimmed correctly, i.e. not too short and straight.

Ointments for inflammation of the nail bed

Depending on whether the nail bed inflammation was caused by viruses, bacteria or fungi, different ointments are used as therapy to treat the nail bed inflammation.

In general, it can be said that anti-inflammatory ointments offer a good basis to make the nail bed inflammation more bearable, especially by relieving the pain and reducing the inflammation. It also supports the body's natural healing process, so that the nail bed inflammation disappears faster and with less pain.
Please also read: Betaisodona

Since chamomile extracts in particular have an anti-inflammatory effect, you can try to cure the nail bed inflammation with pure chamomile ointment from the pharmacy in the case of a slight inflammation of the nail bed.

It is important not to use an ointment that contains not only chamomile extracts but also additional fragrances or additives, as these can only irritate or even promote the inflammation of the nail bed.

If the nail bed inflammation is caused by bacteria, which can be determined by the doctor through a blood count analysis, the patient should also use disinfectant ointments, such as ointments containing iodine.

Iodine-containing ointments can also have a supportive effect on viruses and fungi, but they are best suited for the treatment of bacterial nail bed inflammation.

That is why it is also very important to always discuss with your family doctor which ointment he thinks is the right one before treatment. This ensures that the treatment is individually tailored to the patient and targeted.

In addition, to alleviate the itching that is often associated with nail bed inflammation, ointments with tannins (such as Phenol-methanal-urea-polycondensate) use.

If nail bed inflammation is not caused by bacteria but by viruses, treatment with an antiviral ointment is appropriate.

Since these ointments do not kill the viruses directly, but only inhibit their growth, it usually takes some time (a few days) until the nail bed inflammation has completely disappeared.

If, on the other hand, the inflammation is caused by fungi, the patient must be given an ointment that is antifungal (against fungi). Here, too, mostly only the growth of the fungus is inhibited, so it can take a little longer for the ointment to develop its full effect.

It is also important that a doctor should be consulted again if the inflammation of the nail bed continues to progress despite ointment treatment. A doctor should open them, especially if larger pus blisters have developed. Afterwards, a bandage with disinfectant and anti-inflammatory ointment can be applied to finally cure the nail bed inflammation and to ensure sufficient moisture under the bandage.

In particularly severe cases, the nail may have to be removed completely. In these cases, a protective bandage is also applied, in which there is an ointment, which on the one hand provides sufficient moisture and on the other hand has an anti-inflammatory effect.

Here, too, it is very important that the opening of the pus vesicles or the removal of the nail may only be carried out by a doctor, as otherwise the inflammation may be carried over into deeper tissue layers and the inflammation will spread to the entire toe or finger.

When do you need an antibiotic?

Antibiotics work for inflammation caused by bacteria, but not for inflammation caused by fungi or viruses. For example, topical antibacterial ointments can be used.In the case of advanced inflammation of the nail bed, it may be useful to take an antibiotic. However, the use of the drug should be clarified with a doctor in advance.

Which antibiotic is the best?

Depending on the bacterial pathogen, taking different antibiotics can be useful. Usually antibiotics are used against staphylococci, which are common pathogens of nail bed inflammation. These are, for example, representatives of the antibiotic group of penicillins. One example of this is oxacillin. Antibiotics with the active ingredients cefalexin or clindamycin are also used.

Read more on the topic: Treatment with antibiotic

Home remedies for nail bed inflammation

In the case of inflammation of the nail bed, the patient should act as quickly as possible and initiate adequate treatment, as otherwise the inflammation can progress and there is a risk of surgical removal of the nail. There are different Home remediesused to treat inflammation of the nail bed. On the one hand you can at mild inflammation first try the inflamed area twice a day for 20 minutes with a Chamomile bath to wash. But you can also use chamomile instead 15 drops of tea tree oil or 2-3 tbsp table salt put in the bath and hold for approx 10-15 minutes to bathe.
After the bath you should apply cream to the inflamed nail. Here you can 1 teaspoon horseradish With 9 teaspoons of honey mix. This mixture is applied to the skin after the bath and then acted for 15 minutes. In the evening, the affected area can also use Clove oil be coated. Instead, you can Aloe vera gel use. In the pharmacy you can also get compresses with black ones Pull ointment can smear. It is important to decide on a type of ointment and a type of bath and not try everything at once. Should after 3 days If there is no improvement or if the symptoms worsen, it is important to consult a doctor, as otherwise the inflammation can spread to the surrounding structures.


Inflammation of the nail bed should always be taken seriously and treated as quickly and adequately as possible. Especially that regular bathing the affected area and then applying cream with a disinfectant ointment (Betaisodana ointment, for example) help counteract inflammation. Has already got one Pus formed, but which does not come to the surface properly to open up, is used in homeopathy Hepar sulfuris in a Low potency (D4 or D6) to treat nail bed inflammation. As soon as the pus focus opens, Hepar sulfuris should then be in a higher potency (D30) should be taken to quickly subside the inflammation. If Hepar sulfuris had no effect, you can also use it instead Myristica sebifera use. If the inflammation has existed for a long time or if you want to treat the subsequent symptoms after an operation, this is an option Silicea on, as this means the Immune system the skin increases.


In general, you should just make sure to treat your fingernails as well as toenails well, which means that you should regularly care for them with creams or ointments, provide appropriate protection in the event of stress or simply that you wear suitable footwear so that there are no pressure points can arise (Nail bed inflammation treatment).

In order to prevent inflammation of the nail bed, one should especially with the manicure and pedicure be very careful around the nail and the surrounding one skin not to hurt. The Cuticle should never removed and the use of nail polish also promotes the development of an infection, which is why it should only be used as rarely as possible. Furthermore, contact with irritating cleaning agents should be avoided as far as possible. If this is not possible, you should pay attention to appropriate protective clothing such as plastic gloves with a fabric inside, which offer the skin the important protection against moisture. There is also the option of having the nails generally through silica-rich food (Silica is found in high concentrations in millet, whole grain rice, oat flakes and bananas, among other things) to strengthen.

In patients with Wound healing disorders, diabetes or one weakened immune system it makes sense to monitor even minor injuries and minor signs of inflammation very carefully, as infections have a more serious effect on them than on healthy people (Nail bed inflammation treatment).

Ointment against nail bed inflammation

Prophylactic ointments

It is important to take effective preventive measures in patients who are prone to nail bed inflammation.

Above all, this includes patients who participate in the Diabetes (Diabetes mellitus) are ill, or others Blood circulation problems to have. For these patients, in addition to thorough hygiene, it is usually a matter of course to keep their toes and fingers regularly with them caring, moisturizing ointments to apply cream.

In particularly serious cases, you can also regularly disinfectant ointments applied to minimize the risk of infection.

A Ointment with cortisone is only suitable in the rarest of cases and should only be used when due to the wide range of side effects all other methods exhausted are.


The Inflammation of the nail bed usually heals on its own within a week or so. If it does not do that, there is a risk that it will spread to the nail root or beyond. In the worst case, it can also affect the surrounding soft tissues like that Tendon sheaths stretch and even that bone achieve yourself. This can cause bacterial inflammation of the bone, a Osteomyelitis. If the inflammation persists for a long time, the affected nail may grow disrupted and the nail growth may remain altered forever. Very rarely does it happen that the nail is completely shed.

If the infection is left untreated for too long (Nail bed inflammation treatment) remains or the patient is “burdened” with risk factors, it can lead to the development of a chronic inflammation of the nail bed come, which is less painful.