If the nail isn't infected, an ingrown nail can be treated by taking a small piece of cotton or waxed dental floss and place it under the nail, according to HowStuffWorks. Medical tape or a bandage can be used to keep it in place.
To speed up the healing process and relieve discomfort, it is best to soak the finger in warm water a few times each day, explains HowStuffWorks. When the nail is not soaking, the area should be kept clean and dry. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen, can be taken to alleviate the pain.
If home remedies do not help or the fingernail becomes infected, a doctor should be consulted about treatment, states HowStuffWorks. A doctor may remove part of the nail or the entire nail to treat the area. If surgery is necessary, the procedure is typically done with a local anesthetic. It is a fairly simple outpatient procedure. Usually, the doctor only removes part of the nail, as removing the entire nail may cause it to grow back in a distorted shape. Partial nail removal prevents the ingrown part from coming back, but it does not cause the nail to grow back in a weird shape.