Are you susceptible to ingrown toenails? Find out what you can do about it.
Ingrown toenails: they are painful and unpleasant when they happen. Even though they may not seem like a big deal there are some instances in which an ingrown toenail may require professional care or treatment in order to properly heal. From the office of our Olney, Camp Springs/Clinton, Kensington and Silver Spring, MD, podiatrists Dr. Michael Frank, Dr. Marc Goldberg and Dr. Adam Lowy, learn more about how to prevent an ingrown toenail and what symptoms might mean that you are dealing with a more serious issue.
What is an ingrown toenail?
An ingrown toenail is when the corner or edge of a toenail grows into the skin. Those with an ingrown toenail will often experience pain, swelling and redness right where the nail digs into the skin.
How can you prevent an ingrown toenail?
One of the best ways to prevent ingrown toenails is to know how to properly trim your toenail. The main rules are to not trim your toenails too short and not to cut the edge of your toenails shorter than the rest of your nail. Trim them straight across rather than trimming them at an angle and keep the nails level with the tips of your toes.
It’s also important that you are wearing the proper footwear. If you are wearing socks and shoes you can test this right now. Try to wiggle your toes around inside your shoes. Can you? If you can’t, or if your toes are bunched up, then your shoes are far too tight. This can put added pressure on the nails and lead to ingrown toenails.
If you are an athlete you are also at risk for developing ingrown toenails. Protect your feet from injury by making sure you are wearing the proper footwear for your chosen sport.
When should I seek medical attention for an ingrown toenail?
The issue with an ingrown toenail is that it can often cause the skin to crack or break, which allows bacteria to get under the skin and cause an infection. Those with an infection will often notice that the skin is red, extremely painful and warm to the touch. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms it’s important that you contact your foot doctor to find out whether you need to come in for an evaluation.
Those patients who have nerve damage in their feet or diabetes who are also experiencing an ingrown toenail should come in as soon as possible for treatment even if they aren’t experiencing symptoms of an infection.
Are you living in Silver Spring, Kensington, Olney or Clinton, MD, and looking for a podiatrist that can help you with your current foot and ankle issues? If so, call Family Foot and Ankle Associates of Maryland today and let’s talk about the ways in which we can help you.