Ingrown Toenails / Ingrown toenails

Ingrown townails occur when a sharp corner of the toenail curves downward and grows into the skin, usually at the side of the nail. The digging in of the nail irritates the skin creating pain, redness and swelling.

  • WHAT IS AN INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • When a sharp corner of the toenail curves downward and grows into the skin, usually at the side of the nail
    • The digging in of the nail irritates the skin creating pain, redness and swelling
    • An ingrown toenail can pierce the skin which can result in it becoming hot, growing extra tissue, having pus, and an odour – meaning the area is now infected
    • Can occur due to the nail pathology – commonly an ‘Involuted’ nail where the nail curves around into the skin rather than being straight
    • Very common problem amongst children and adults
  • WHAT CAUSED MY INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • Improper nail cutting
      • If nails aren’t cut correctly a ‘spike’ or sharp edge may be left, this spike may grow into the skin as the nail grows resulting in an ingrown toenail
      • The nail should be cut straight across and rough edges filed so no spikes are left
      • If you are having difficulty managing your nails a Podiatrist can happily manage them for you safely
    • Hot, sweaty feet
      • This environment softens the toenail, making it more likely to break and form a spike
      • Also provides an environment where infection is more likely to occur
    • Tight shoes
      • This presses the skin at the side of the nail onto the sharp spike
      • Restricts the room for nail growth
    • Trauma to the nail
    • Genetics and nail shape
    • Weight
    • Occupation
  • HOW WILL A PODIATRIST TREAT MY INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • This problem can be treated either conservatively or surgically dependent on what your podiatrist recommends
    • Conservative treatment may include:
      • Removal of the spike, nail edge and/or dry skin that is causing the ingrown toenail
      • This is done as pain free as possible, however if it is causing any distress your podiatrist is able to administer a local anaesthetic to assist your pain relief
      • An antiseptic and dressing may be applied to assist the healing process
      • If there is any infection present your podiatrist may also refer you to your GP for a course of antibiotics until the infection has cleared
    • Surgical treatment:
      • if an ingrown toenail has been a reoccurring problem for you your podiatrist may recommend having a procedure to permanently remove a section of the nail
      • performed in our clinic under local anaesthetic by one of our qualified podiatrists – no stitches required
      • It is designed to prevent the offending nail edge from growing back and causing any further problems
      • Often a fairly pain free experience with most patients reporting little to no pain after the procedure
      • Minimal healing time post procedure
      • HAVE LINK TO NAIL SURGERY PAGE FOR MORE INFO
  • WHAT IS AN INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • When a sharp corner of the toenail curves downward and grows into the skin, usually at the side of the nail
    • The digging in of the nail irritates the skin creating pain, redness and swelling
    • An ingrown toenail can pierce the skin which can result in it becoming hot, growing extra tissue, having pus, and an odour – meaning the area is now infected
    • Can occur due to the nail pathology – commonly an ‘Involuted’ nail where the nail curves around into the skin rather than being straight
    • Very common problem amongst children and adults
  • WHAT CAUSED MY INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • Improper nail cutting
      • If nails aren’t cut correctly a ‘spike’ or sharp edge may be left, this spike may grow into the skin as the nail grows resulting in an ingrown toenail
      • The nail should be cut straight across and rough edges filed so no spikes are left
      • If you are having difficulty managing your nails a Podiatrist can happily manage them for you safely
    • Hot, sweaty feet
      • This environment softens the toenail, making it more likely to break and form a spike
      • Also provides an environment where infection is more likely to occur
    • Tight shoes
      • This presses the skin at the side of the nail onto the sharp spike
      • Restricts the room for nail growth
    • Trauma to the nail
    • Genetics and nail shape
    • Weight
    • Occupation
  • HOW WILL A PODIATRIST TREAT MY INGROWN TOENAIL?
    • This problem can be treated either conservatively or surgically dependent on what your podiatrist recommends
    • Conservative treatment may include:
      • Removal of the spike, nail edge and/or dry skin that is causing the ingrown toenail
      • This is done as pain free as possible, however if it is causing any distress your podiatrist is able to administer a local anaesthetic to assist your pain relief
      • An antiseptic and dressing may be applied to assist the healing process
      • If there is any infection present your podiatrist may also refer you to your GP for a course of antibiotics until the infection has cleared
    • Surgical treatment:
      • if an ingrown toenail has been a reoccurring problem for you your podiatrist may recommend having a procedure to permanently remove a section of the nail
      • performed in our clinic under local anaesthetic by one of our qualified podiatrists – no stitches required
      • It is designed to prevent the offending nail edge from growing back and causing any further problems
      • Often a fairly pain free experience with most patients reporting little to no pain after the procedure
      • Minimal healing time post procedure
      • HAVE LINK TO NAIL SURGERY PAGE FOR MORE INFO

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