Let’s face it, one of the most frustrating aspects of life is dealing with an ingrown toenail. Not only is it painful and unbearably agonizing even to the slightest touch, but this also makes wearing shoes quite insufferable.
To make things worse, ingrown toenails can recur every so often. Ingrown toenails are simply those that curve and dig into the skin as they grow. This happens when the edges or corners of your nails grow and overlap with the skin next to them.
There are several reasons why individuals tend to develop ingrown toenails. Get to know what these are and how you can prevent them from happening in the future.
What Causes Ingrown Toenails
– Cutting Toenails Improperly
One of the most common reasons you might get an ingrown toenail is that you are cutting your toenails the wrong way. You are either cutting these too short or in a curved manner.
Either way, these can result in the sides of the skin taking over the corners of the nails, leading the nail to grow within or into the skin itself.
The same goes for cutting your toenails in a round shape. Since these don’t have rounded clear corners, they are most likely to get stuck under the skin.
– Wearing Shoes That Don’t Fit Well
Another factor that causes ingrown toenails is wearing ill-fitting shoes. Doing so can cause the skin on the sides of the nail to go over the nail itself, especially when your tight shoes start to squeeze the toenails in.
– Toenail Injuries
Injuries such as stubbing your toe when running into a piece of furniture or constantly kicking a ball can cause trauma to your foot and the nail itself. When this happens, the growth of your toenail can go towards an ingrown route.
Your genetics can also play a part in you having ingrown toenails. Many individuals who have this or are predisposed to this condition usually obtain this from one or both of their parents.
Treating and Avoiding Ingrown Toenails
Just as there are different causes of ingrown toenails, there are also various ways you can treat this. If you’re lucky enough to have your toenails in relatively good condition, meaning they aren’t infected, you can try to address this all on your own.
One way to go about this is soaking the affected foot in warm water for around 20 minutes or so 2-3 times a day. This will help relieve any discomfort you might be feeling. While you’re at it, you can try to remove the ingrown yourself using clean tools. Follow this up with some
antibacterial cream or antibiotic ointment.
You can also lift and push the skin away from the toenail’s edge by using a cotton ball. This will help change the direction of your toenail’s growth, but be sure to change this every day.
If your ingrown toenails are infected or are on the more serious side, however, you might want to see a trusted podiatrist or clinic that specializes in foot care. As professionals, we can remove the ingrown toenail the right way.
If you are experiencing an ingrown toenail, please call our office at (561) 809-2343 or contact us on our website.
The Key Takeaway
Caring for ingrown toenails requires you to constantly stay on top of the game. With utmost care and attention, by practicing foot hygiene and wearing the right shoes, you can avoid ingrown toenails from recurring.