Ingrown toenails can be extremely painful, and even a mildly ingrown nail can make wearing shoes a very uncomfortable experience. Nails become ingrown when the edge of the nail presses against the soft tissue along the side of the nail bed. As the nail grows, this edge digs into the soft tissue, becoming embedded and causing pain, redness, and swelling. Without proper treatment, the nail area can develop an infection which can wind up spreading to the toe and even to other parts of the foot. Ingrown toenails are more common among people who wear shoes that are too tight or restrictive in the toe area, those whose nails tend to grow in a more rounded shape, and those who trim their nails into a curve. Infections occur more commonly among people with compromised immune systems or circulation problems, including those with diabetes.
Ingrown toenails can be treated with professional trimming to remove the portion of the nail that's pushing into the skin, followed by application of gauze to elevate the nail away from the nail bed. In some cases, a larger portion of the nail or the entire nail may need to be removed to treat an existing infection. Once the nail is removed, a special solution can be applied to the area to prevent the nail from regrowing into the skin. Antibiotics may also be prescribed to fight off an infection.
The best way to prevent ingrown toenails is to trim them straight across and not too short to keep the edge of the nail from growing into the skin. Wearing shoes with plenty of room in the toe is also important to avoid pressure along the side of the toe that can force the skin to press up against the nail.
Ingrown toenails should always be evaluated by a podiatrist. It can be difficult to spot the early signs of an infection, and treating an ingrown nail at home can allow an infection to spread or even cause further damage to the nail bed.
We accept Medicare and most PPO insurance plans. For questions about insurance, please contact the office.
"Staff was super friendly and very efficient. They scheduled me for an appointment on the same day that i hurt my foot. They were very understanding."
"The treatment I received was very quick and highly effective. My issue was resolved after leaving the office, one visit and done."
"I had an enormously positive experience with Dr. Co. He has a very calm, gentle presence and really takes the time to listen to questions and concerns..."