The Problem With Ingrown Toenails
21st October 2014
By Adnan Nazir, Specialist Podiatrist, BSc (Hons) Pod
An ingrown toenail is a toenail that has grown into the skin instead of over it. This usually happens to the big toe, but it can also happen to other toes. An ingrown toenail can get infected. It may be painful, red and swollen, and it may drain pus. Anyone can get an ingrown toenail, but adults get them more than children do. People who have curved or thick nails are more likely to get an ingrown toenail. This is more common in older adults.
An ingrown toenail can have a number of different causes. Cutting your toenail too short or rounding the edge of the nail can cause it to grow into the skin. Wearing shoes or socks that don’t fit well can also cause an ingrown toenail. If your shoes are too tight, they might press the nail into the toe and cause it to grow into the skin. You can get an ingrown toenail if you hurt your toe, such as stubbing it. This can cause the nail to grow inward. Repeating an activity that injuries the nail, such as kicking a soccer ball, can also cause an ingrown nail.
The main symptom of an ingrown toenail is the pain from the nail growing into the skin instead of over it. If the ingrown toenail gets infected, it might be swollen or red, and it might drain pus. The area around the ingrown toenail is often painful.
A Podiatrist at The Central Foot Clinic can examine and diagnose an ingrown toenail. He or she will look at your toe where the nail has grown into the skin and provide you with information on the best course of treatment.
Your Podiatrist might give you antibiotics, or, If your toenail is very ingrown, we may suggest minor surgery to remove all or part of the ingrown nail.
Avoiding Ingrown Toenails
You may be able to prevent ingrown toenails by wearing roomy and comfortable shoes and socks that do not press on your toes. If you work in a place where your toe might get hurt, wear sturdy shoes such as steel-toed boots to protect your toes.
Be sure to trim your toenails properly. You can do this by cutting your toenail straight across, not curved. Make sure you do not cut your toenail too short. You can also leave your toenail a little longer at the corners to help it grow over the skin.
For further details regarding ingrown toenails, nail surgery or any other foot related problems, please do not hesitate to contact Central Foot Clinic
For more information about foot pain, its diagnosis, treatment and management, please visit the Central FootClinic website here