What are In-Grown Toenails and How Are they Treated?
In-grown toenails are a common, yet-painful foot condition in which a toenail grows inward, burrowing into the soft flesh that surrounds the toe. In order for sufferers of in-grown toenails to determine the best course of treatment for their condition, it is important that they understand different aspects of their condition, including:
Causes of in-grown toenails
- Appearance and symptoms of in-grown toenails
- Ways in which a podiatrist can treat in-grown toenails
Let’s take a look at each of these aspects in more detail:
Causes of In-Grown Toenails
There are several potential causes of in-grown toenails, some of which may be surprising. You may be at a greater risk for in-grown toenails if you:
Wear ill-fitting shoes. If your shoes cause your toes to be crowded, there is a greater chance that your toenail can grow inward.
Have naturally curved toenails
Trim your toenails to match the curve of the toe, rather than straight across. Trimming straight across encourages the toenails to grow back without an inward facing slant.
Sustain an injury to your toe
Not all of these causes are things that can be helped, so it is important to recognize what an in-grown toenail looks like if you end up with one.
Appearance and Symptoms of In-Grown Toenails
In-grown toenails primarily affect the big toe, making it easier to spot the ways in which the condition presents. The skin that lines the side of the nail may be red, painful, or inflamed. If an infection is present, the area may leak pus.
If you experience these symptoms, it is important to consult with a podiatrist. Seeking proper medical attention becomes even more important for patients who also have diabetes or certain cardiac or circulatory issues that may impact the feet. These comorbidities can cause dire complications if left unchecked.
Ways in Which a Podiatrist Can Treat In-Grown Toenails
There are a variety of ways in which a podiatrist may treat an in-grown toenail, each depending on the severity of the issue. For minor instances, the podiatrist may only lift the nail to allow the in-grown portion of the nail to grow properly. More severe conditions may lead to a portion of the nail being removed. If the issue is recurrent on the same toe, the podiatrist may remove the nail and the nail bed of the entire infected area, preventing it from happening again.
Once the procedure is preformed, the podiatrist will prescribe medication for discomfort and provide instructions on maintenance of the area to prevent infection.
Looking for a Podiatrist?
If you suffer from in-grown toenails and are in want of medical treatment and are in the Berkshire, Reading area, look no further than Michael Rooks, Chiropodist. His practice offers many solutions for your condition, including laser therapy and orthotics. One glance at his website will show you testimonials of patients just like you, now much happier, thanks to Mr. Rooks!