Ingrown toe nail

ingrown toenailAn ingrown toe nail is an extremely painful condition.

It occurs when the edge of a nail penetrates the surrounding tissues of the toe (usually the big toe) and causes swelling, inflammation and infection. Ingrown toenails are often caused when people leave a sharp edge when cutting their nails, ill fitting shoes or by trauma.

Painful nails can also occur without the nail penetrating the toe. Shoe pressure on the nail edge can result in callous (hard skin formation) in the nail groove. This can be treated routinely by the podiatrist however in some cases nail surgery may be necessary.

To alleviate the pain people frequently cut down the side of the nail, unfortunately this can lead to an infected ingrown toe nail.

The treatment of ingrown toe nails is initially centred on conservative management.

This means the podiatrist removes the offending splinter of nail and the toe is dressed.

Review appointments are made to ensure the nail does not penetrate the skin around the nail as it grows.

Often ingrown toenails come back time and time again in such cases nail surgery is recommended.

Ingrown toenail