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How Ingrown Toenails Occur

Tuesday, 08 June 2021 00:00

An ingrown toenail occurs when the toenail curves and grows down into the skin on the sides of the nail. As the toenail digs into the flesh and the flesh grows around it, pain, inflammation, redness, swelling or even an infection can follow. Common factors that lead to ingrown toenails include genetics (such as poor posture, gait, or a deformity), improperly cutting the toenails, and wearing tight shoes. Ingrown toenails are not usually serious. However, they can become very painful and infected if left untreated. If you have diabetes or a compromised immune system, your nail is in persistent pain, or your nail is showing signs of being infected, you should consult with a podiatrist for a proper treatment option.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Bruce Smit of Frankfort Foot & Ankle Clinic. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.

Causes

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.

Symptoms

Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.

Treatment

Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Frankfort, and Crete, IL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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