Dealing With Ingrown Toenails

If you have ever talked to a foot and ankle specialist in Spring TX, chances are one of the more common foot problems they have dealt with are ingrown toenails. This is a condition that is up there with athlete’s foot, bunions, corns and Achilles tendonitis. Ingrown toenails are painful and require attention either at home or from a medical professional including the podiatrists at Business Name.

What Is an Ingrown Toenail?

An ingrown toenail results when the side or the corner of the nail begins to grow into the flesh of the (traditionally) big toe. Once it pierces the skin, the condition manifests itself in any of the below symptoms including:

* Pain

* Redness

* Swelling

* Infection – not always but often

What Are the Main Causes of Ingrown Toenails?

According to podiatrists, ingrown toenails can result from several causal factors.

* Toenails are not trimmed properly – either too short or not evenly across

* The wearing of ill fitting shoes that crowd the toenails – either too tight or ones that push the toes to the front e.g. some high heels

* A toenail injury

* Hereditary conditions

You are not responsible for your genetic make-up but you can take charge and reduce the risks by making sure you wear comfortable shoes and trim your nails properly.

Treatment: At Home

If the condition is not serious, if you are not a diabetic or suffer from other specific medical conditions, you may choose to treat the ingrown toenail at home. Among the most frequently recommended treatments are soaking your foot in warm water as often as 4 times daily followed by keeping the toe nail dry. Alternatively or in addition to the above, soak a piece of cotton in antiseptic and place just under the nail. If the toe does not improve, see a foot and ankle specialist.

Seeing a Foot and Ankle Specialist

You may need to see a podiatrist if you:

* Are diabetic

* Suffer from nerve damage to the foot, ankle or leg

* Have poor blood circulation

* Notice the area has become infected

He or she will address the situation by lifting the nail, removing a part of the nail or by a more complete removal of the nail and accompanying tissue. This last is suggested if the problem is a recurrent one. Antibiotics may also be applied if the nail is infected.

Seeing a foot and ankle specialist in Spring TX may be the best solution if you find yourself with a suspected infected ingrown toenail. Under his or her care, you will be able to address the situation. You may also discover the cause. In this way, you can work to prevent the painful condition from coming back.