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You Can't Always Treat An Ingrown Toenail Yourself
By Marc Goldberg, D.P.M.
March 08, 2018
Category: Foot Care
Tags: ingrown toenail  

Do you have an ingrown toenail? It might be time to visit a foot doctor if your nail can't be freed easily. Podiatrists Dr. Michael Frank, Dr. ingrown toenailMarc Goldberg, or Dr. Adam Lowy of Family Foot and Ankles Associates of Maryland in Olney, Silver Spring, Clinton and Kensington, MD, share a few signs that may indicate that your ingrown toenail requires professional treatment.

When should I visit a foot doctor?

If you have an ingrown toenail, you may need to see a podiatrist if:

  • You can't free the nail yourself. In some cases, it may be possible to dislodge the nail yourself before it becomes firmly embedded in the skin. Unfortunately, as the nail grows, this may no longer be possible. If you try to forcefully remove the edge of the nail, you'll damage your skin and increase the risk of infection.
  • Walking is difficult. The pain from an ingrown toenail can make walking, standing or even wearing shoes very painful. If your pain has become constant or severe or you find it hard to walk, you may want to schedule an appointment with our Olney, Silver Spring, Clinton or Kensington offices.
  • You notice signs of infection. Your toe may be red and feel warm to the touch if it's infected. Other signs may include red streaks and pus around the nail. Failing to treat your infection may cause it to spread.
  • You have diabetes. Don't attempt to free your ingrown nail yourself if you have diabetes, even if the nail has only just begun to grow into the skin. Because diabetes can slow healing, even seemingly minor foot conditions should be treated by a podiatrist to prevent hard-to-treat infections.

How do podiatrists treat ingrown toenails?

You may need a minor procedure to free and remove the trapped portion of the nail. Before the procedure begins, you'll receive a local anesthetic to ensure that you feel no pain. If you frequently experience ingrown toenails, we may recommend removing all or part of the nail.

Are you concerned about an ingrown toenail? Schedule a visit with Dr. Michael Frank, Dr. Marc Goldberg, or Dr. Adam Lowy by calling (301) 924-5044 for the Olney, MD, office, (301) 439-0300 for the Silver Spring office, (301) 868-7670 for the Clinton office or (301) 942-8110 for the Kensington office.