An ingrown toenail is something that may be preventable by taking the right steps. One of the most important precautions you can take to avoid getting an ingrown toenail is to make sure your shoes fit properly. Your shoes should have space in the front so that your toes have room to move around. Your toes should be able to “rest flat and straight” inside of your shoe. Another way to prevent ingrown toenails is to cut your toenails straight across instead of in a rounded shape. Cutting them straight across will allow your nails to grow out correctly, instead of growing down into your toe. Although there are ways you can prevent ingrown toenails, you should always see a podiatrist if you see any signs of infection.
Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact one of our podiatrists of Footcare 2 You, Inc. Our doctors can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.
Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.
- 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
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.
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 West Orange, Toms River, Guttenberg, and Elmwood Park, NJ. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.