How To Get Rid Of Dried Blood Under Toenail: 5 Ways!

A blood clot under the toenail must hurt a lot. If you don’t pay attention to the injury, it might take a serious turn. Although, most of the time dried blood under the toenail heals on its own.

However, if you’re experiencing pain in the injured area, draining the blood will relieve you from that. But for that, you’ll need to know the methods for draining the blood.

So, how to get rid of dried blood under toenail?

In most cases, the nails heal naturally. However, if the injured nail hurts, draining the blood will help. You can drain the blood using the elevate and icing method, clipping method, or trephine method depending on the type of injury. But make sure to visit a doctor if the nail doesn’t heal within a few weeks.

These were the methods to get rid of blood clots under the toenail. However, if you want to know more about the different methods and their outcome, read along. Your toenail will start healing in no time.

So, let’s begin-

When Should You Drain Your Nail Blood?

You might be wondering if draining the blood from under the toenail is a must.

To answer that simply, no, draining the dried blood isn’t recommended unless it’s really painful. So if you find a dark spot under your toenail, you should let it heal naturally. 

The blood under the nail will start healing and soon the spot will be gone. If this becomes a beauty concern, you can try and hide the spot by painting your nails black or dark colors.

draining the blood from under the toenail

Source: Referee Magazine

Usually, the spot disappears after one full growth cycle of the nails which for toenails could take up to 9 months. 

However, if the toenail hurts and the pain is unbearable, you should drain the blood out. The process would not take much time and will relieve you of your pain.

So, it’s better to leave the nail with the injury and let it heal naturally.

Types Of Injuries And How To Identify Them

We often remain a little too careless and end up hurting our nails. You may either stub your toe on any unexpected corners. Or get crushed under heavy objects. Even if the toenail doesn’t break, it might suffer from severe internal injuries.

This causes problems like bleeding and pooling underneath the nail. There are no ways the blood will drain out, however, the injury will heal itself naturally. But in some cases, this can be very painful. The clotted area under the nail hurts when touched. 

Sometimes these injuries might take a serious turn. For instance, the entire toenail might fall off. In that case, proper steps should be taken without any further delay. 

For that, you’ll simply have to identify the type of injury your nail has suffered. If you see a dark spot or a black/blue patch in the middle of your toenail. That’s the dried blood clot under your nail.

Now, bleeding under the nail can be treated in a number of ways. For that, you’ll need to find out the severity of the injury. 

Let us take a look at the possible injuries of bleeding under the toenail.

Small Black Patch Under Toenail

In this type of injury, your nail will develop a visible dark spot/patch somewhere in the middle. This happens when the tissue of your nail bed gets injured. The size can be really small and you might not feel any pain at all. 

However, the nail might become a little harder than usual. If the black patch doesn’t change or become larger, you have nothing to worry about. If it gets bigger then you should start a treatment for your nails. 

Also getting the nail diagnosed would be a good idea. Because this black patch could be the symptoms of subungual melanoma. Which is a form of skin cancer. So the early diagnosis is mandatory if the nail doesn’t start healing within a week. 

However, if you find your nails turning orange around the injury then there’s a possible fungal infection. In this case, you should take medical advice before taking any steps.

Lifted Nail

Along with the internal injury and bleeding, the nail also gets lifted. If the entire toenail lifts, it would be a serious problem. Then you might have to visit a doctor. 

On the other hand, if the nail has only been lifted from a side or from the tip. Then there are other treatments that will help you heal your toenail. The lifted area of the nail might hurt at first, but it’ll heal within a few days. 

However, draining the blood might prove a little difficult in this state. So proper steps should be taken when draining dried blood.

Black/Blue Toenail

Discoloration of nails is a serious factor. Usually, when there is dried blood under your toenail, it’ll heal naturally after a week. The natural growth cycle helps to heal the dried blood. 

However, if the nail starts to turn black or blue, it’s time for an emergency diagnosis. This state of nail injury is called subungual hematomas.

black toenail

Source: WebMD

There are two different types of subungual hematomas: minor and major. Both these hematomas require different treatment methods. And the treatment should be started as soon as possible.

Painful Injured Area

One of the most common reasons for removing blood from a toenail is pain. Oftentimes, you’ll notice, the injured area creates pressure on the toenail. For that reason, you cannot move the finger or touch the nail without hurting. 

The blood clot obstructs the growth of the cell. Which creates pressure and leads to the entire nail falling off. The only way to get rid of pain and damage is to let the blood drain out.

For that, you can use a number of methods to help you out. This kind of injury requires quick action. Because it’ll help you get rid of the throbbing pain and heal the injured nail. However, one needs to remain careful while dealing with the nail.

All of these injuries have different healing methods and treatments. Also, there are different techniques for draining the dried blood from under a toenail. 

Here’s a quick overview of the methods of getting rid of dried blood under toenails and the related injuries-

Type Of Toenail Injury

Treatment Procedure

Approximate Time For Healing

Black spot/patch under the nail Wait it out or clip the toenail 2-12 weeks
Nail lifted from the edge Elevate and ice, clip the nail, or the nail removal More than 2-3 months
The injured area on the nail hurting Trephine method or the nail removal method More than 2-3 months
Toenail turned black/blue Trephine method, nail removal method, or do a diagnosis for subungual melanoma More than 2-3 months

So these are the different injuries and their treatment procedure.

5 Methods To Get Rid Of Dried Blood Under Toenail

Now, time for us to take a look at the methods for removing the dried blood. The methods are simple. But they require close observation for results. 

If you’ve identified your toenail injury, it’s time to proceed with the draining methods. Make sure you’ve chosen the right method. Because the wrong one could worsen the injury. And for that, you need to know the methods thoroughly.

So, let’s dive in-

Method 1 of 5: Time Heals Everything

After the full growth cycle of a nail, your injury will be completely healed. The dark spot/mark will disappear. Toenails require around nine months to complete the cycle.

So, if your nail only has a small dark spot, it’s better if you wait it out. After a few weeks, you’ll see the dark mark will start to reabsorb.

Method 2 of 5: Elevate And Icing Method

This method is for lifted nail injuries. If any of the edges of the toenail has been lifted and blood is pooled up underneath. Then you can try elevating the nail from the edge. 

This will give you access to the injured area and clean up the dried blood. You can try cleaning with a cotton bud. You should also make sure to use a disinfectant for preventing future meetings. Once the blood is clean, you can ice the injured area. This will help to decrease any inflammation or pain.

Method 3 of 5: Clip The Toenail And Drain

In case the injury is near the tip of your nail, try and trim it up to the blood clot. This will allow the blood to drain. Finally, you’ll be relieved of your pain and discomfort. 

However, you need to be really careful while operating the clippers. You don’t want to hurt yourself again.

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Now, you can finally clip your toenails safely. 

Method 4 of 5: Trephine Method

If you’re experiencing too much pain, this method is recommended. However, it’s not for the faintest of hearts. So make sure you’re up for the trephine method.

In this method, take a paper clip and straighten it. Heat it until it’s red. Then carefully put the sharp end of the clip over the nail. Place it just above the blood clot. You’ll see the paper clip is drilling slowly through the nail. 

Do not put any pressure on the clip. If needed, heat the paper clip again. Drill the nail until the blood clot starts oozing out.

You’ll feel relieved when the blood drains out from under the nail. The nail will again heal itself within a month or two.

Method 5 of 5: Nail Removal Method

If none of the elevating or trimming methods don’t work, there’s only one option left. And that is to drain the blood by completely removing the nail. 

It’s better if you don’t take further action on the nail. And book an appointment with a podiatrist. That would be the only way to drain out the blood and heal your nail.

What If Dried Blood Under Toenail Won’t Go Away?

There’s a possibility that the dried blood under the nail won’t go away. Even after the treatments. Maybe the nail is still hurting or the black mark is not disappearing.

ried blood under the nail won’t go away

Source: WebMD

There could be two major reasons for this. It could either be a toe fracture or you could be suffering from subungual melanoma. This is a dangerous form of cancer of the nail unit. In this case, the color and texture of the nail change. This is when you should consult a doctor as soon as possible.


Question: What happens if you don’t drain subungual hematoma?

Answer: Subungual hematoma is the state of blood clotting under the nail. Usually, this injury gets healed on its own. In some situations, blood under the nail worsens to the extent, where the nail falls ff or the nail needs to be removed.

Question: How do you treat bleeding under your toenail?

Answer: There are a number of treatments. But usually, the nail heals naturally. However, you can put ice to decrease pain or any kind of inflammation. If the pain is unbearable, you can try the elevating, clipping methods or trephine methods. 

Question: Will the blood under my toenail go away?

Answer: Yes, the blood under your nail will go away Usually, the dried blood under a nail heals naturally with time. You’ll find the dark mark on your finger fading after a week or two. Fingernails require 2-3 months to complete a growth cycle and toenails require nine months. After a complete growth cycle, the blood will go away. However, if it doesn’t, you need to visit a doctor.

Signing Off

We hope now you know how to get rid of dried blood under toenail. Make sure you take proper care of the injured nail after draining the blood. Do not put too much pressure on your toenail or else the injury will worsen.

Let us know if you were able to get rid of the dried blood under your toenail.

Till then, keep your nails safe.

Katharyn Riedel

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