Ingrown Toenails Can Be a Pain!
There’s no doubt that even the smallest parts of your body can give you huge problems. If you’ve ever had an ingrown toenail, you know how the pain in your toe can incapacitate you in a big way. It can make walking difficult, and if you happen to bump it, everyone around will likely hear your response! It may even become infected, with drainage oozing out from under the nail. Not a pretty sight! If this describes your experience, contact Aadvanced Foot Care Associates for relief.
What Is an Ingrown Toenail?
Your nail is meant to grow straight out from your toe, not curl down at the sides and grow into the skin. Downward growth irritates the tissue and makes it swell and become inflamed. This happens most often on the big toe, which can be subjected to a lot of pressure from shoes or trauma during activity. Infection can set in, and the resulting pain can be severe.
How Did I Get It?
A common cause of this condition is improperly trimmed nails. You should always shape them straight across. Don’t cut corners – literally! Trimming the corners of your toenails to a rounded shape increases the risk of them growing down into the skin. Watch the length as well. They should be trimmed evenly with the edge of your toe (not too short) to provide some protection from trauma and abrasion.
Ingrown toenails can also be caused by stubbing your toe or the repeated trauma of kicking in a game like soccer. Constantly striking the ball can jam the toenail, and it can begin to bend downward and grow abnormally. This problem is heightened by the poor design of soccer and other types of shoes. Any shoe that is tight in the toe is a factor in developing this painful condition.
Some people may be more prone to ingrown toenails because of inherited foot characteristics. If everyone in your family has unusually curvy toenails, you may have a genetic predisposition for your nail to grow downward. You should take special care to choose the right shoes and avoid injury to your toes.
What Can I Do About the Pain in My Big Toe?
There are several things you can do at home to alleviate your symptoms.
- Try soaking your foot in warm water for 10 – 15 minutes, 2 or 3 times a day. This helps soften the skin and relieves some of pain from the pressure of the nail. It can also help cleanse the area of bacteria that could infect it.
- You could take a tiny piece of cotton ball and place it under the corner of the nail where it presses into your toe. This protects your skin from abrasion and allows the nail to grow out straighter.
- Don’t use a sharp instrument to dig under the nail. This will only increase the irritation and may cause a break in the skin that could allow infection to enter. For the same reason, don’t puncture the nail with a needle to drain any pus.
If 2 or 3 days of home care have not relieved your symptoms, or if you see green pus or red streaks on your toe (a sign of infection), contact the specialists at Aadvanced Foot Care Associates right away. We can alleviate your symptoms and recommend the best treatments ingrown toenails. Call our office in Rego Park at (718) 896-4433, Plainview at (516) 822-9595 or Flushing at (718) 969-2266 to schedule an appointment. We have over 100 years of know how to help solve your foot problems!