Ingrown toenails are a common and painful foot problem. Ingrown toenails happen most commonly in the big toenails. Pain, swelling, redness are early symptoms of an ingrown toenail and should be treated promptly to avoid serious infection. Cutting your nails too far into the corners is the most common reason to develop an ingrown toenail.
Ingrown toenails start because of improper nail cutting, extremely curved toenails or the skin surrounding your nail is large. Trauma that causes toenails to thicken is another cause of ingrown toenails. Tight shoes and socks will aggravate ingrown toenails and should be avoided. Thick and fungal toenails can also make it easier to get an ingrown toenail.
If your toe is red, swollen, painful and warm, it is likely that you are dealing with an ingrown toenail. Ingrown toenails are the result of bacteria entering into the skin along with the nail. This can lead to a bacterial infection and may require the use of a topical or oral antibiotic. Always seek the help of a professional when treating an ingrown toenail. Avoid cutting the nail further to fix the problem yourself.
Treatment and Prevention
Ingrown toenails should be treated early. If you feel you have an ingrown toenail, the following may help in the early stages:
- Soak your feet in warm salt water
- Dry the area with a clean towel or gauze
- Apply an antibiotic cream (eg. Polysporin)
- Bandage the affected toe.
- Get Professional help (Chiropodist) to assess and treat the infection.
Proper nail cutting technique is vital in preventing ingrown toenails. Toenails should be cut straight across so that you can still see the corners of the nail. ‘Rounding’ the nails is not necessary and can lead to ingrown toenails. In serious cases, where ingrown toenails occur regularly, a Chiropodist or Podiatrist may recommend a simple surgery to remove a small portion of your nail to avoid it growing down the side and preventing future infections.
What can a Chiropodist do for you?
Our Chiropodist will assess, educate and treat your ingrown toenail(s) in a safe and sterile environment! Dealing with an ingrown toenail can be nerve racking and we can understand that. You also, don't want the infection to become greater than a local infection. The Chiropodist may prescribe a topical or oral antibiotic depending on the level of infection. Follow up appointments will be scheduled to make sure your nail grows back healthy and prevent the nail from recurring. Our Chiropodists are licensed to perform ingrown toenail surgery in the clinic under local anaesthesia for pain-free relief of ingrown toenails.
Give our office a call at 905-209-8000 or book an appointment through our online portal to get your ingrown toenails treated safely and effectively.
Chiropody Services are covered by most extended health insurance plans.
We're open Evenings & Weekends for your convenience!