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Can Ingrown Toenails Be Prevented?

Monday, 11 March 2019 00:00

Patients who have ingrown toenails are often aware of the pain they may cause. It occurs when the side of the nail grows into the skin surrounding the big toe, and may often look red and swollen. Additionally, some people may notice a discharge coming from the affected area, and may have chills or feel warm. There are measures that can be implemented, which may prevent ingrown toenails from developing. These may include trimming the toenails to the correct length and width, and wearing shoes that fit correctly with adequate room for the toes to move freely in. Mild relief may be found if the toe is soaked in warm water several times per day, in addition to wearing open-toe sandals. If you are a diabetic patient, or if your ingrown toenail causes extreme pain, it is suggested to seek the counsel of a podiatrist who can properly treat this condition.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact one of our podiatrists of Chicago Podiatric Surgeons. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.

Causes

  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition

Prevention

Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.

Treatment

Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Chicago, Lombard, and Tinley Park, IL. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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