Is the edge of your toenail extremely sore to even the slightest touch? Does brushing against it make you want to hit the roof? More than likely you may be suffering from an ingrown toenail, which can be very debilitating and can limit you from your daily activities.
An ingrown toenail (also known as onychocryptosis) occurs when the nail partially grows into the surrounding skin. If left untreated, can quite easily get inflamed and infected and in some cases cause oozing of blood and puss.
There are four main causes of ingrown toenails:
· Shape of the nail – a nail shape that curls into the edges or one that is quite broad and flat is more likely to become ingrown.
· Improper nail cutting technique – cutting too far into the corners or leaving any sharp edges or spikes behind may result in an ingrown toenail.
· Footwear – incorrect footwear can place unnecessary pressure on the toes and therefore make ingrown toenails more likely.
· Trauma – trauma to the nail plate can cause changes in the shape of the nail, sometimes causes the nails to thicken and more likely in becoming ingrown.
If you’re experiencing an ingrown toenail you should begin by soaking it in salt water and dressing the toe with betadine and band-aids. it is important to have professional treatment by your podiatrist to avoid ongoing pain and infection. Podiatrists are experts at treating ingrown toenails and it’s something that is commonly and effectively treated by us at East Perth Podiatry.
You’ll have all options discussed with you and treatment usually involves the removal of the nail edge or spike, which can be performed precisely and gently without major discomfort or pain. This is done at your initial consultation and pain relief is usually noticed straight way.
In stubborn and recurring cases, a minor surgical procedure can be performed to permanently correct the shape of the nail to prevent it from becoming ingrown. This is extremely successful and very little downtime is involved.
If you or anyone you know is suffering from an ingrown toenail, book in with our friendly and professional podiatrist to get things sorted.