Ingrown toenails are painful and can pose a serious risk to people with diabetes or other conditions that cause poor blood flow to the feet. Expert podiatrist Alex Urteaga, DPM, provides advanced care for ingrown toenails at Foot and Ankle Clinic of Central Texas in New Braunfels, Texas. If you’re concerned about an infection or other complications of an ingrown toenail, call the office or book an appointment online today.
If you’ve ever had the side of a toenail curl downward and dig into your skin, that’s an ingrown toenail. This common condition most often affects the big toe, causing pain, redness, and swelling. Without treatment, an infection may occur.
Signs and symptoms of an ingrown toenail include pain and tenderness along one or both sides of the toenail. The ingrown toenail may feel like a hard bump at first, then become red and painful if an infection develops. You may notice a small amount of pus draining from the area.
There are many reasons an ingrown toenail may occur. The most common are trimming your toenails too short or with rounded corners and wearing shoes that are too tight. Other causes include trauma, such as stubbing your toe, or inherited differences in the shape of your toenails.
People with sweaty feet, such as teenagers, may be more likely to get ingrown toenails. They also occur more often in older adults because the toenails thicken with age.
Activities and sports that put increased pressure on the toes, like ballet, soccer, and kickboxing, may also increase the risk of ingrown toenails.
Most of the time, ingrown toenails resolve with home treatments like soaking the foot in warm water and wearing comfortable shoes with plenty of room in the toe box.
However, if the ingrown toenail causes severe pain, or if home care isn’t effective, the experts at Foot & Ankle Clinic of Central Texas can help.
If you have diabetes or another condition that causes poor circulation, such as peripheral arterial disease (PAD), it’s important to call Foot & Ankle Clinic of Central Texas at the first sign of an ingrown toenail. Don’t attempt to treat it yourself.
Nonsurgical treatment for ingrown toenails may include gently lifting the nail away from the skin. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can alleviate the pain.
Your podiatrist at Foot & Ankle Clinic of Central Texas may prescribe antibiotic medication to fight infection. For severe ingrown toenails, they may remove all or part of the nail. If the problem recurs, they may remove some of the underlying tissue to prevent the nail from growing back.
For advanced care of ingrown toenails, call Foot & Ankle Clinic of Central Texas, or book an appointment online today.