Did you know: Ingrown Toenails can be treatment and managed by Chiropodists.
What is an Ingrown Toenail?
A toenail that is “ingrown” is curved and grows into the skin. This usually occurs at the sides of the nail or the borders of the toenail. This can irritate the skin, causing redness, swelling and warmth around the area of the toe.
Ingrown toenails can progress to infection if the nail, breaking the skin causes bacteria to enter. Many people self-treat ingrown toenails, trying to “dig” them out this can increase the risk of infection. Hopefully upon signs of an ingrown toenail, you see a Chiropodist for treatment and management techniques to help avoid infection.
What are the Signs of Infection?
The area of an infected ingrown toenail may have drainage and a foul odour. It may have increased swelling, redness and pain as well.
Your Chiropodist may help some of the fund drain and teach you how to keep it clean. Chiropodists are also able to prescribe topical or oral antibiotics as appropriate for the individual.
What Causes Ingrown Toenails?
- Trauma – this may include stubbing the toe, running, or having an eject fall on the toe. Trauma can alter the growth pattern of the toenail leading to an ingrown toenail.
- Improper Trimming – this is the most common cause of ingrown toenails. Cutting the toenail too short may lead to the skin next to the nail growing over the toenail.
- Improperly sized footwear- avoid earring shoes that are too tight. This can case trauma to the area.
- Nail Conditions – this includes fungal infections
- Heredity – the tendency for ingrown toenails in many people can be inherited
Treatment for Ingrown Toenails:
In an otherwise healthy person, some preliminary treatment at home is safe. If an infection is suspected or if there are complicating medical conditions such as diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, poor circulation or other sensory issues of the foot, self-treatment is strongly discouraged.
It is best to see a Chiropodist (Foot Specialist) for a consultation to ensure there is no infection. They will then provide you with education specific to your situation.
In Clinic Chiropodist Foot Care
This is the first step if you have complicating medical issues as discussed above
Sometimes initial treatment for ingrown toenails can be safely performed at home. However, home treatment is strongly discouraged if an infection is suspected, or for those who have medical conditions that put feet at high risk, such as diabetes, nerve damage in the foot, or poor circulation.
After a thorough examination of the area the Chiropodist will discuss treatment options with you. They may prescribe an oral antibiotic if infection is present.
If it is a recurrent ingrown toenail, the Chiropodist may suggest a procedure to help remove the ingrown part of the toenail. This includes a small injection of a freezing agent and removal of the toenails borders and potentially root.
There is no need to suffer with a chronic or persistent ingrown toenail. Consult with our Oakville / Halton Chiropodist today regarding your treatment options for ingrown toenails as well as other foot care issues.