If you are suffering from an ingrown toenail, you are constantly on guard when around friends, family, children, and pets. The slightest contact with the ingrown toenail can be exquisitely painful. Now imagine somebody stepping on that toe.
Ingrown toenails are a painful condition in which the nail is curved downward and grows into the skin. This usually happens at the sides of the nail. The nail can dig in and irritate the skin, often creating pain, redness, swelling, and sometimes infection in the toe.
Ingrown toenails most often form from improper trimming of the nail. Oftentimes, cutting the nail too short can allow the skin to form over the nail causing it to be ingrown. Other factors that can cause an ingrown nail include trauma and engaging in activities that involve repeated pressure on the toes, like running or sports that involve kicking. The tendency to develop this condition can also be inherited.
If you develop an ingrown toenail, you may feel the need to remove the ingrown yourself. However, doing so can put you at risk of making the ingrown worse and possibly developing an infection. If you develop an infection you should be seen by a doctor.
When you come in for an appointment, the foot doctor can provide you with many options. A significant part of treating ingrown toenails is removing the portion of the nail that is ingrown. At times, some doctors may just recommend soaks and antibiotics, BUT, many times this is not adequate. The offending portion of the nail needs to be removed, especially if you are developing an infection.
An in-office procedure may involve numbing the toe and removing a corner of the nail, a larger portion of the nail, or the entire nail. There are also various techniques that may be used to destroy or remove the nail root. This treatment prevents the recurrence of an ingrown toenail. Your surgeon will determine the most appropriate procedure for you.
Don’t let ingrown toenails slow you down. There are many options to make that area pain-free. Feel free to reach out to us or make an appointment if you have any questions.