Ingrown toenails are a common and painful foot problem. Ingrown toenails start mostly in the big toenails. Pain, swelling, redness are the early symptoms of an ingrown toenail and recommended to be treated early to avoid severe 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, fungal nail infections or fleshy skin around the toenail. Bumping your toenail into something can also cause it to break and ingrow. Tight shoes and socks can aggravate ingrown toenails and should be avoided.
If your toe is red, swollen, painful and warm, you are likely dealing with an ingrown toenail. Ingrown toenails start from bacteria entering the skin along with the nail. This leads to a bacterial infection and may need a topical or oral antibiotic for relief. 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 have an ingrown toenail, you might get relief from soaking your feet in salt water, drying the toenail with a clean towel or gauze, apply an antibiotic cream (e.g. Polysporin), and use a bandaid. Seek professional help if the pain continues.
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 severe cases, a simple surgery to remove a small portion of your nail to avoid it growing down the side and preventing future infections may be required.
What can a Chiropodist do for you?
Our Chiropodist will assess, educate and treat your ingrown toenails 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 more significant than a local infection. The Chiropodist may prescribe a topical or oral antibiotic depending on the severity of the infection. Follow up appointments will be scheduled to make sure your nail grows back healthy and prevent the toenail from recurring. Our Chiropodists are licensed to perform ingrown toenail surgery in the clinic under local anesthesia for pain-free relief of ingrown toenails.