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Bruised Toenail

What is a Bruised toenail?

Although most of the time having a bruised toenail is a small thing but it can be very painful and tender as the fluid and blood builds up in your toenail. It is also referred to as a subungual hematoma. Actually it is not the toenail that gets bruised because a toenail is composed of dead tissues. It is the skin that is underneath your toenail that becomes bruised.

Bruised Toenail Symptoms

The symptoms of a bruised toenail can include:

  • Discoloration to the area
  • You may experience pain in the area that is affected that can run from a dull ache to severe and acute.

Bruised Toenail Causes

When a person has a bruised toenail this means that you have hurt your toe internally. There are many different reasons why a person would have a bruised toenail, which can include:


This is a very common cause and can be from physical activities like playing soccer, downhill running, running, following a very rigorous exercise program you do every day, etc.


This is also another common cause of having a bruised toenail. It could be caused by banging your foot on a hard surface, or dropping something heavy on it. Ballet dancers are prone to bruised toenails because of the pointed foot stance they have to use while dancing. Getting your toes stepped on could lead to bruising your toenails.

Footwear that does not fit right

This can include footwear that is too big or too small. Being too small can put a lot of pressure on your feet. Also shoes that are too pointy or narrow can cause a bruised toenail.

Another cause is having toenails that are too long.


The best way to treat a bruised toenail is to find ways to prevent this from happening in the first place. There are also some home remedies you can try before you go see your regular physician or podiatrist. If the toenail is falling off or is severely blackened you should see your physician immediately so they can access the injury properly. If there is an infection they can give you a prescription antibiotic. The physician may even be able to cut the loose toenail off to prevent it from accidentally being torn off. A podiatrist can also drain the blood from your nail bed manually by making a tiny hole in the center of the bruised toenail and lightly squeeze the toe to get the fluid to drain out until the nail bed returns back to a normal color.

Some of the ways that you can treat a bruised toenail can include:

  • When there is little to no pain the best treatment is to not engage in any activities that could cause risk of further injury.
  • If it is possible cut the toenail as short as you can without hurting yourself and then soak it in warm salt water to help ease the pain. You can then apply a topical antibiotic ointment and cover with a bandage. This can help prevent any infection.
  • For the swelling and pain take over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • Wear toe pads or some type of cushioning pads in your shoes to help protect your bruised toenail and to help prevent it from happening again.
  • When running make sure that you are wearing a shoe that is one size larger than your regular shoes to give your toes a little more wiggle room to let it heal and prevent further bruised toenails.
  • Apply turmeric paste to the bruised toenail and it has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties to help prevent infections and reduce swelling.
  • You can also soak your toe in warm soapy water one or two times each day to help relieve the tenderness, especially if the toenail has come off.
  • Regularly apply antibiotic ointments or creams.
  • For the first few days you should elevate the toe to reduce the swelling under the nail and to help numb the pain. When you have it elevated apply an ice pack for ten minutes.

Bruised Toenail Healing time

The exact amount of time that it will take a bruised toenail to heal will depend on how it became bruised and how severe the bruising is. In severe cases where the nail bed is bruised badly the toenail may fall off. If the bruised toenail does become loose and start to come off do not try to remove it. Let it come off on its own but make sure that you are protecting that toe until it does come off. You do not want to accidentally tear it off and cause other problems. Although it may take several months you will grow another toenail to replace the one that fell off. Just keep the area clean and protect the nail bed with some type of bandage.

If the bruised toenail does not fall off right away the bruising will heal on its own but you have to give enough it enough time to heal. Again protect the area. In time a new toenail will grow into slowly replace the area of your bruised toenail.

Bruised Toenail Pictures

Collection of Images, Photos and Pictures of Bruised Toenail…

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