What is an ingrown toenail?
An ingrown toenail occurs when the side on the nails begins to irritate the the skin causing pain. This irritation can often lead to redness and swelling and is also often associated with yellow discharge around the area of nail and skin. An ingrown nail is most often painful and can limit the types of shoes that can be worn.
Ingrown toenails are very common and can occur any time during your life. At your Body and Feet we often see children with ingrown toenails due to the nature of wearing school shoes during the day.
What causes ingrown toenails?
There are many ways you can get an ingrown toenail. The most common causes are:
- Thickened nails
- Curved Nails
- Excess Skin surrounding the edge of the nail
- Wearing closed in shoes that are tight through the toe box.
- Excessive sweating
- Trauma to the nail
- Hereditary predisposition
- Incorrect cutting of the nails
How are ingrown toenails treated?
- On your first treatment we assess the nail and generally remove a wedge section from the corner of the nail. This is done carefully and gently to ensure it is as painfree as possible. We use sterile instruments to ensure any further infection is minimised. This type of treatment usually requires ongoing maintenance. Our patients will often return for follow up treatment about every 2-6 months depending on the growth of the nail.
- If the nail continues to be painful and is constantly annoying then we often recommend Nail Surgery. This involves using a local anaesthetic on the offending toe and gently removing a straight edge piece of nail. We then cauterize the nail bed to prevent the nail from re-growing. We spend quite a lot of time educating you on dressing the nail which is usually done for approximately 7-10 days after surgery. Full healing usually takes 3-6 weeks.
- Nail Surgery is only used if required.
If you notice pain around the nail or if it is red and swollen then it is likely you have an ingrown nail. We advise that at this point you should make an appointment to see a Podiatrist.
We currently have over 70 G.P’s on the Gold Coast who refer patients to our clinic for ingrown toenails and other podiatry related problems. We are a very trusted Podiatry clinic on the Gold Coast.
Make an appointment today.