What Are Ingrown Toenails
Ingrown nails, the most common nail impairment, are nails whose corners or sides dig painfully into the soft tissue of nail grooves, often leading to irritation, redness, and swelling. Usually, toenails grow straight out. Sometimes, however, one or both corners or sides curve and grow into the flesh. The big toe is the most common location for this condition, but other toes can also become affected.
What Is An Ingrown Toenail
Warning: if youre a bit squeamish, you may want to skip this graphic paragraph.
An ingrown toenail is one of the most common toenail problems, and can cause unbearable pain, infection and even result in removal, eek! This happens when the toenail grows downward and into the skin.
When the integrity of the skin is compromised, an infection can result.
Does Epsom Salt Help Ingrown Toenail
Mix 1-2 tablespoons of unscented Epsom salts into one quart of warm water and soak your foot for 15 minutes at a time. Do this several times a day for the first few days. Always dry your foot completely after soaking. Soaking your ingrown or infected toe will help relieve the pain and pressure of an infection.
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Ways To Easily Treat An Ingrown Toenail
An ingrown toenail, also known as onychocryptosis, is caused by the nail edge growing into the skin of the toe.
This is most often caused by trimming your nails in a rounded fashion, making it so once they grow back they do so into the skin of your toe.
Once the edge of the nail breaks through the skin, it normally produces inflammation, discomfort, and potentially an infection if it is not cared for properly.
Initially presented as a minor discomfort, an ingrown toenail may progress into an infection, become a bone disorder, and/or become a recurring problem.
If you trim your toenails too short around the sides of your toes, you are actually increasing the chances of an ingrown toenail developing.
Like many people, when you trim your toenails, you may taper the corners so that the nail curves with the shape of your toe. But, this technique may encourage your toenail to grow into the skin of your toe if done too severely. When this occurs, the sides of the nail will begin to curl down and dig into your skin.
3 Easy Ways to Control and Treat Ingrown Toenails Yourself
Also available at our location by a medical staff: Ingrown Toenail Treatment
- Epsom Salt
- Soak Your Feet In Water
- Cotton and Dental Floss
If you believe your toe has become infected, if you have poor circulation, or if you have nerve damage, then it is recommended that you visit a foot care specialist before the infection spreads and potentially develops into something much worse.
How To Prevent Ingrown Toenail
Avoid Making It Worse
I do not recommend additional trimming of the nail in an attempt to alleviate discomfort, says Dr. Adigun. Instead, it is essential to keep the inflamed skin as far away from the nail as possible, and this often requires a visit to the doctor to assist. We often needlessly abuse our poor feetcheck out the health secrets your feet wish they could tell you.
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Risks Complications And Things You Should Know About Ingrown Toenails
Its also important to note that if you have diabetes or another condition that causes poor blood flow to your feet, youre at greater risk of complications of ingrown toenails. Thats just another reason to treat your diabetes.
Left untreated or undetected, an ingrown toenail can infect the underlying bone and lead to a serious bone infection. Complications can be especially severe if you have diabetes, which can cause poor blood flow and damage nerves in your feet. So a minor foot injury a cut, scrape, corn, callus or ingrown toenail may not heal properly and become infected.
A difficult-to-heal open sore may require surgery to prevent the decay and death of tissue . Gangrene results from an interruption in blood flow to an area of your body.
What Can A Doctor Do For An Ingrown Toenail
Your doctor, orthopedic surgeon, or podiatrist can treat an ingrown nail with a minor procedure, or in certain cases with surgery.
This typically involves numbing the toe or foot with an injection. The skin on top of the ingrown nail may be removed with a scalpel.
The ingrown nail section is then partly or completely removed. You will not feel any pain during the procedure expect for the injection.
If you have ingrown nails often, your surgery may include use of a laser or chemical procedure to remove a part of the nail bed permanently so that it no longer grows as wide.
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Onyfix Ingrown Toenail Treatment
Onyfix is a technology for treating ingrown toenails that reshapes and ensures the nail grows in a usual way. We have experienced podiatrists who will handle your case using an individualized system to treat your ingrown nail. Typically, ingrown nails are painful, cause discomfort, and cause severe complications in extreme cases. Onyfix offers an alternative approach to clients not suited for toenail surgery or people with needle phobia. The procedure is also ideal for diabetic, pregnant, breastfeeding mothers, the elderly, or those with vascular conditions.
The procedure is non-invasive and painless that uses a composite material that serves as a brace on the toenail plate. LED light is used to cure and harden the composite material. As a result, the nail is kept in the correct shape from the base, reshaping the growing nails pathway.
The onyfix is cured to your toenail and remains there for two or three months. Therefore, as the nail grows, it grows with Onyfix helping it grow in the correct position. Additional bands could be required over the two or three-month period to obtain optimum results.
How To Cut The Ingrown Toenail
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What To Do For An Ingrown Toenail
There are a number of home remedies, which can be applied to heal and fix the problem of an ingrown toenail. Some home remedies to cure an ingrown toenail are as follows:
1. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt, or scientifically known as magnesium sulphate, has a range of different uses. However, there is a qualm whether the Epsom salt actually works for an ingrown toenail or not. But, it softens the skin of the affected area, which makes it easy to draw out the toenail from the skin. One can take treatment of Epsom salt by adding a large heap of it in water, and soaking in the foot for about 18-20 minutes. Repeat it two times a day. This is an effective remedy to heal an ingrown toenail.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
Being a powerful disinfectant, hydrogen peroxide helps the skin around the ingrown toenail to get soft. It makes the lesion less painful and prevents further infection. Mix half a cup of hydrogen peroxide in water and soak your foot in it for 15-20 minutes. It will provide relief to some extent from the ingrown toenail.
You can also directly apply hydrogen peroxide with a cotton ball to the toenail, but, some doctors believe that direct application of undiluted hydrogen peroxide may rupture the healthy tissues of the skin.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
4. Vicks VapoRub
5. White Flower Oil
6. Tea Tree Essential Oil/ Lavender Essential Oil
These natural antibiotics can also be applied on the ingrown toenail to get immediate relief from the problem of ingrown toenail.
How To Treat Ingrown Toenails
Sometimes,you can treat your ingrown toenails at home. If your ingrown toenail doesntshow any of the signs of infection swelling, hot to the touch, oozing, foulodor you might just try letting the nail grow out.
Soak it and wait. Dr. Stock suggests soaks in warm water with Epsom salt or a mild detergent, then applying an antibiotic ointment and bandage to the area.
Remove it yourself if theres no infection. First soak your feet in a very warm bath with Epsom salt. This softens the skin and reduces inflammation. Using clean nail-cutting tools, you can try to clip the affected area and apply antibiotic ointment afterward, says Dr. Botek.
See a podiatrist. For an infected ingrown toenail, or if you arent sure you can deal with treating yours at home, a podiatrist can perform the procedure under a local anesthetic. In the office, we can cut out the offending nail border after first numbing the area, Dr. Stock says. This helps the pain and allows the infection to heal, but may not prevent recurring ingrown toenails.
Never ignore an infected ingrown nail. A prolonged infection can spread and lead to serious complications, especially if you suffer from poor blood flow, an impaired immune system or neuropathy of diabetes .
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When Should You Not Get A Pedicure
You should cancel your pedicure appointment, and seek medical treatment if you have any of the following:
- Change in toenail color
- Redness or swelling in the feet
- Painful warts or bumps
- Broken bones in the foot
- Wounds to the food or recent surgery
- Athletes foot or other fungi
- Diabetes or other immune-compromising disorders
- If you have shaved, waxed or had laser hair removal on your feet that day
If any of these issues do not apply to you, then youre all set to make it to your appointment.
When you are at your appointment, however, be sure that your pedicure specialist sterilizes their tools , or research the website to ensure this.
Or, if youre like me and you have trust issues, you can bring your own tools if you really want to play it safe. There is no shame in looking out for yourself.
Please also make sure your tech washes their hands with soap and/or watch them change their gloves before they begin. Some people have some pretty nasty feet!
Feel free to creep the reviews of the salon you choose to save yourself any headaches. You and your feet deserve the best, so make sure they offer quality service and customer satisfaction.
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Originally published at on January 24, 2020.
Top 9 Dos And Donts For Handling Ingrown Toenails
Pedicure season is here, and clients will be coming in droves for foot services. Unfortunately, ingrown toenails are a common issue, causing clients pain and swelling, and sometimes leading to infection. While techs are not permitted to treat this condition, nail professionals can help prevent ingrown nails. Here, expert advice for averting this toenail bummer this summer.
1. DO remember, techs arent doctors. If a client presents an already ingrown nail, its not for the nail technician to touch, says Karen Hodges, co-owner of NailCare Academy in Fort Myers, Florida. We are in the beautification business only. However, after a client has been released from her physicians care, techs can cosmetically address any foot- and nail-care issues.
2. DONTservice a client with inflammation, injury or infection. Inspect the feet carefully before ever starting a service, says Hodges. If you witness any redness, swelling or weeping around the nail plate, dont proceed with the pedicure and refer them to a medical professional.
5. DO cut the nail in small cuts. Use small nibbles as you work your way across the nail, rather than trying to take the length down in a single bite, says Hodges. Avoid flattening the nail, which can cause pain and splitting on the sides of the free edge, especially when nails are thick or tough.
What are the most common ingrown issues you face in the salon? Tell us in the comments, below.
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Will I Need Surgery
Experts debate whether surgery is necessary. Surgery is not a first-line treatment for ingrown nails, says Dr. Adigun. Once a nail is operated on, it may never grow back the same. However, Hinkes notes that podiatrists use surgical techniques to permanently resolve the problem. One technique is called the phenol-alcohol technique or the P& A procedure. The procedure was developed in the 1960s and is acceptable for diabetic patients. This procedure is done in the office under local anesthesia. Once the toe is numb, a tourniquet is applied to the toe to prevent bleeding, and a portion of the side of the nail that is ingrown is removed, thus providing access to the nail root or Matrix cells. These specialized cells are bathed with 88 percent carbolic acid , destroying them and eliminating the problem. If you do opt for surgery, make sure you know these 50 tips from top surgeons.
- Chris G. Adigun, MD, board-certified dermatologist and nail specialist at Dermatology & Laser Center of Chapel Hill in Chapel Hill, NC.
- , a doctor of podiatric medicine at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee.
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Common Causes Of An Ingrown Toenail
Some of the most common causes of an ingrown toenail include:
- Wearing shoes that crowd the toenails, such as heels or any shoes that are too tight )
- Cutting toenails too short or not straight across
- Injuring the toenail
- Subungual exostosis
- Use of isotretinoin in the treatment of severe acne
There are many risk factors involved in the development of ingrown nails, such as anatomic and behavioral mechanisms. Some experts suggest that wider nail folds and thinner, flatter nails may increase the risk of ingrown toenails. A case-control study with 46 patients found no difference in the anatomic shape of toenails in patients with and without ingrown toenails.
Repetitive trauma, such as running, kicking or inadvertent trauma like stubbing the toe, may be other ingrown toenail causes. Without any strict evidence basis, its thought that a genetic predisposition and family history, hyperhidrosis, and poor foot hygiene increase the likelihood of ingrown toenails. Diabetes, obesity, thyroid, cardiac and renal disorders that may predispose to lower extremity edema can also increase the likelihood.
I want to note that an ingrown fingernail is similar in terms of how it happens. The usual causes of ingrown fingernails are due to improper trimming of the nail, an injury and even nail biting. And, like the toenail, sometimes the natural shape or thickness of the nail can make it more susceptible to becoming ingrown.
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How To Get Rid Of An Ingrown Toenail
By Kyra Oliver
If youve ever had an ingrown toenail, you know the pain that it can cause. Not only that, but its annoying we use our toes in some way or another as part of our usual daily movement, and this use and constant knocking seems to aggravate the nail even more. It makes the pain more noticeable and seems to last forever!
An ingrown toenail, or onychocryptosis, may occur at any age and is one of the mostly common toenail problems. It can be a painful condition that can easily become infected without proper care. While more studies need to be conducted, there are a few that suggest a slightly higher male-to-female ratio, particularly in the 1425 age group however, it can affect patients of any age.
There are multiple reasons why an ingrown toenail develops, including:
- improper nail-cutting technique
- pressure from abutting digits caused by hallux valgus or lesser toe deformities
- the presence of a subungual exostosis
- occasionally, the use of isotretinoin in the treatment of severe acne
Something thats often forgotten is that toenail fungus can become part of the problem too. Usually, nail fungus occurs when fungus enters the nail through a small trauma, such as a cut or break in the nail. Though often a misconception, nail fungus is not caused by poor hygiene. However, if you have an ingrown toenail, you need to be conscious of keeping the area clean.
Symptoms Of Ingrown Toenail
The signs and symptoms with which, we can identify the occurrence of ingrown toenail, are:
- Pain along the margins of the nail
- Pain while wearing footwear, which gets worsen with time
- Redness and swelling in the toenail
- Discharge of yellow fluid
- In some cases, an unusual fever also occurs
- Watery discharge with traces of blood
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