When the nail curls down and digs into the skin, of one or both edges, it is known as ingrown toenails. They occur if you trim the nails too short, especially the sides of the big toes, when you trim and taper with the corners of the nail so it curves to the shape of the toe, or when you wear tight or short shoes. Toe fungus treatment houston is prevalent among teenagers.
The symptoms of the toenail may happen in stages:
First, the toe might be hard, tender, and swollen. Then it will feel a bit sore, red, and infected if not noticed in the first instance. When the skin is delicate, painful, swollen, and red it sets a fertile ground for infections that lead to pus draining out of the affected edge of the skin.
Reasons why ingrown toenails develop
- They can develop due to congenital reasons such as the nail is too large for the toe.
- Stubbing that causes trauma or being stepped on.
- Tight shoes that cause pressure on the toenails.
- Improper trimming and grooming of the toenails.
How to fix ingrown toenails
As soon as you notice pain and tenderness you can treat the toenails at home to prevent infections and the need for visiting a foot doctor.
- At least three times a day soak the foot in warm water.
- Keep the feet dry all day long
- Lift the nail gently at the edge and insert a piece of cotton or waxed dental floss between the skin and the nail. Ensure you change the cotton or dental floss daily to maintain hygiene and avoid infections.
- Wear shoes with a comfortable toe area but during the treatment of ingrown toenails, you can wear sandals until the toenails are completely healed.
- Take pain relief medications and if no improvement is noticed after these interventions make sure you call the doctor.
When does a podiatrist consider surgery?
If the pain, swelling, inflammation, and discharge are present you need to consult a health practitioner. They will take time to diagnose and one of the immediate interventions can be taking of oral antibiotics. Depending on the severity of the ingrown toenail the foot doctor will consider removing the nail partially, this removes the portion digging into the nail bed and sometimes the soft tissues may be removed.
Surgery is effective as it removes the nail edge curing into the skin. If ingrown toenails are recurrent in children, then permanent removal of the nail is considered especially if the condition is chronic and recurrent.
If the ingrown toenail causes severe pain the doctor may remove it partially. The doctor injects the toe with an anesthetic and uses scissors to cut away the ingrown part of the toenail without disturbing the nail bed. Completely getting rid of the ingrown toenail leaves the nail bed exposed causing it to be more delicate and when the nail regrows it increases the chances of growing back deformed.
The only way to avoid ingrown toenails is by trimming the nails across, avoid feet trauma, and wear spacious footwear especially at the toes.