Ways to Prevent Ingrown Toenails and When to Seek Help
Ingrown toenails are a common foot condition. Many things can cause an ingrown toenail to develop, including: an injury, wearing tight shoes, and badly cut toenails. Dr. Daniel Preece and Dr. Darren Groberg at Utah Musculoskeletal Specialists in Salt Lake City, UT, offers treatments for ingrown toenails. Read on to find out how to prevent ingrown toenails and when to seek help.
Ingrown Toenails Overview
Anyone can develop an ingrown toenail. An ingrown nail is caused by the pressure from the ingrowth of the toenail edge into the skin of the toe. The result is swelling, pain, and redness. The condition usually affects the big toes. If an ingrown toenail causes a break in the skin, bacteria may enter and cause an infection in the area, which is often marked by a foul odor and drainage.
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
Many cases of ingrown nails may be prevented by proper trimming. Here are tips to prevent ingrown toenails:
- Cut your toenails in a straight line, and don’t cut them too short. Short toenails are more prone to becoming ingrown.
- Using a nail file to give your nails a slight curve.
- Wear well-fitted shoes and socks.
- If you enjoy getting pedicures, make sure to go to an experienced professional. A pedicure can cause an ingrown toenail if the pedicurist is overly aggressive in cutting back a toenail.
When to Visit a Podiatrist
You should see your Salt Lake City, UT, podiatrist immediately if your ingrown toenail is causing you pain or you think you may have an infection. Also, if a short trial of at-home treatment has not resulted in improvement of the condition, see your podiatrist. If you have poor circulation or diabetes, you should seek immediate treatment at the first signs of an ingrown toenail, as it can lead to severe complications.
Treatment for Ingrown Toenails
Conservative treatments include elevation, salt water soaks, proper nail cutting, and good foot hygiene. If your toenail is infected, your podiatrist will prescribe an oral or topical medication to treat the infection. If you have chronic pain or the infection returns, your podiatrist can perform a procedure to remove the ingrown toenail. Surgical nail removal can be done in your doctor's office.
When you have an ingrown toenail, your feet need a little TLC. Call Utah Musculoskeletal Specialists at 801-532-1822 today to schedule an appointment in Salt Lake City, UT.