Ingrown toenails can turn from a minor inconvenience to a painful infection without proper treatment. At Union Podiatry, John Senatore, DPM, provides prompt treatment for ingrown toenails so you can avoid complications. Patients in Baltimore and Towson, Maryland, should call one of the offices or use the online tool to request an appointment.
When your toenail grows abnormally and digs into the skin beside it, you have an ingrown toenail. The surrounding skin may become red, swollen, and painful. In some cases, the toe can develop an infection.
Ingrown toenails can be painful and uncomfortable, but aren’t usually a medical emergency. For people with medical conditions that affect blood flow to the feet, such as diabetes, an ingrown toenail can cause serious complications.
If you have a painful ingrown toenail or suspect an infection, it’s a good idea to schedule an appointment at Union Podiatry, regardless of your health status.
An ingrown toenail is most likely to develop around your big toe. In the early stages, the area around the toenail may be firm, swollen, or tender to the touch.
If an infection starts to develop, the area around the nail may become red, grow increasingly painful, and drain pus.
People with diabetes should make a daily foot check a habit. During this check, they should look for the start of ingrown nails or other foot problems. Catching an ingrown nail early helps avoid serious complications. Diabetics should not attempt to treat an ingrown toenail on their own.
Ingrown toenails can develop when you trim your toenails too short or round the corners. Shoes that are narrow in the toe box and crowd your toes can also encourage ingrown nails.
If you’ve experienced an injury to a toenail or have toenails that naturally curve, you may be more susceptible to ingrown nails, too.
You can prevent ingrown toenails by trimming your nails in a straight line and keeping their length even with the tips of your toes. Always choose shoes that fit properly.
Treatment for an ingrown toenail depends on the severity and whether or not you’ve developed an infection.
If your case is mild enough, you may take simple measures at home to resolve pain and prevent infection. These include soaking the foot in warm water three to four times a day.You should take care to keep your foot dry and wear comfortable shoes that have enough room for your toes. Ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help with pain relief.
Dr. Senatore may prescribe antibiotics if you have or are at risk of infection. In serious cases, he may have to partially or completely remove the nail. If, despite smart hygiene, you chronically develop ingrown toenails, Dr. Senatore may recommend surgically removing the nail and a portion of the underlying nail bed.
Get the very best care for a painful ingrown toenail from Union Podiatry. Call the nearest location today or use the online booking tool to request an appointment.