Ingrown Toenails

Okay, so up until now I’ve really only written about desirable or fashionable connections to Podiatry. However, I know there are some avid pimple poppers or people who love gory things out there – so this is for you guys! Ingrown toenails. 

 

One of my absolute favourite conditions to help people with is ingrown toenails. Before you cry with disgust or screw your nose up as if you can smell it – I am NOT going to show you photos so don’t stress.

 

Now, what exactly is an ingrown toenail? An ingrown toenail is when the side of the nail starts growing in to your skin causing a wound, cut or discomfort. Often you can get little secondary corns and hard skin which builds up at the pressure junction and makes it even more uncomfortable – this is your bodies way of protecting itself.

 

So how do you fix it? See a Podiatrist ASAP. For some conditions you can muck around trying to resolve it yourself but an ingrown toenail is not something that usually just goes away by itself.

 

A trained and skilled Podiatrist will painlessly remove the nail spike from your skin. This should not cause you any discomfort. If the ingrown toenail is quite severe local anaesthetic can be used to numb the pain. I repeat, this should never be a painful experience.

 

What causes an Ingrown toenail? There are many different reasons that people present to me with painful toenails, however these are my top 4 reasons:

 

  1. Picking nails. This causes an uneven layer at the end of the nail which then grows unevenly and into the corners of your skin. If you are an avid toenail picker – Stop. It. Now.
  2. Too small or too tight shoes. This is a biggy with school aged kids growing really quickly or pregnant ladies with swollen feet and ankles. Always have your shoes professionally fitted and keep an eye on your own shoe size.
  3. Excessive pronation or flat feet. I bet you didn’t expect this one! If your feet roll inwards and the arch collapses rapidly then chances are you have had an ingrown toenail. This type of foot puts pressure on the outside part of your nail when you walk.
  4. Genetics. Yep, you can inherit ingrown toenails. Well, not the actual ingrown part but people with a wide and deep nail plate are more likely to have problems than people who don’t.

 

Do you know what’s desirable and fashionable about toenails? Painless and healthy looking ones. If you experience any pain or discomfort in your nails or you just want a second opinion, have a chat to me today.

 

Laura

Podiatrist

Founder of The Foot Studio

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