Ingrown toenails occur when the toenail begins to grow into the surrounding skin. Though it often does not require medical intervention, if left untreated it can lead to infection. At Knoxville Footcare in Knoxville, TN, your trusted podiatrist is skilled in treating different types of foot conditions. We are dedicated to helping our patients live more comfortable lives!
There are many factors that cause ingrown toenails. A common mistake patients make is in the way they cut their toenails. It is better to cut your toenails straight across and not with a rounded edge. A rounded edge encourages the nail to grow into the flesh of the toe. Trauma and genetics also play a part in the likelihood of ingrown toenails to develop. The main symptoms of an ingrown toenail are: pain, swelling, redness, and a feeling of warmth in the affected toe. If the nail breaks through the flesh, bacteria will be able to enter and cause an infection. Infection will further agitate the toe and nail, causing additional problems.
If an infection has not begun, the treatment for an ingrown toenail is straightforward. An over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication should bring down the swelling. Soak your foot a few times a day, making sure to dry it thoroughly after. Make sure to wear shoes that are comfortable, and don’t squeeze or pinch your toes. The most important thing to remember is to not cut the ingrown toenail on your own. This can worsen the infection and symptoms.
If your ingrown toenail hasn’t improved within a few days, we recommend that you schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Knoxville Footcare is located at 1932 Alcoa Highway, Bldg C Suite 480, in Knoxville, TN 37920. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please visit knoxvillefootcare.com or call 480-832-5777.