An ingrown toenail is one of the most common nail disorders. If you’ve suffered from an ingrown toenail, you know that they often cause discomfort severe enough to disrupt normal activities. At Huntington Beach Foot Doctors in Huntington Beach, California, you can find relief from ingrown toenails that are painful, red, and swollen. Call or make an appointment online today.
Ingrown toenails curve and grow into your skin, leading to irritation and often causing your skin to break. This tear enables bacteria to infect the area, which causes drainage and a foul odor. While ingrown toenails can affect all toes, this condition most commonly occurs on your big toes.
Ingrown toenails result from trimming your nails too short when trying to taper the corners of your toenails so that they curve with the shape of your toe. This technique sets the stage for the nail to curl down, dig in, and grow into the skin of your toe.
While clipping is the primary suspected cause for ingrown toenails, shoes that are too small, as well as minor injuries, also encourage their growth.
It’s important to properly trim your toenails and always wear either clean socks or open-toed shoes to reduce your chances of developing an ingrown toenail.
Huntington Beach Foot Doctors diagnoses ingrown toenails based on your symptoms and by examining your nail and its surrounding skin. If your nail looks like it’s growing over or underneath your skin, and you complain of swollen and tender skin, you might need to begin treatment for an ingrown toenail.
If you don’t have an infection, Huntington Beach Foot Doctors recommends soaking your foot in warm, soapy water several times each day. Room-temperature water with Epsom salt is another option. While you soak your foot, gently massage the side of your nail fold to help reduce inflammation.
Placing cotton or waxed dental floss between your nail and your skin helps to gently lift the edge of the ingrown toenail from where it’s embedded.
For severe infections, you may be prescribed antibiotics. For recurring infections and to help relieve pain, Huntington Beach Foot Doctors offers office surgery to remove part of your ingrown toenail.
It’s important that you avoid attempting to fix an ingrown toenail on your own, as repeatedly cutting your nail causes the condition to worsen. Additionally, it’s important not to disturb your nail bed because exposing it leads to additional pain. Removal of your entire ingrown toenail increases the possibility that your toenail grows back deformed, and it takes months for your nail to regrow.
If ingrown toenails are making you uncomfortable, call or make an appointment online today at Huntington Beach Foot Doctors in Huntington Beach, California.