Ingrown toenails might seem insignificant at first, but trust us: they’re one of the most common conditions we see at our office. They can cause severe pain and discomfort for people of all ages.
In fact, untreated ingrown toenails can put you at risk of infection and other serious complications—especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation. (And unfortunately, by the time most people finally decide to come see us for treatment, infections may have already begun.)
If you suspect you’re dealing with an ingrown toenail, it’s important to seek help. The good news is that office treatment for this condition is quick, relatively painless, very safe, and potentially permanent depending on the procedures you select.
There are various symptoms of ingrown nails, including:
There are a handful of potential causes behind an ingrown toenail. Common ones include wearing shoes that are too tight and crowd the nails, clipping toenails too short, rounding off toenails, and injury to the nail, often as the result of physical trauma.
For some individuals, the root cause of the ingrown nail is simply an inherited toenail structure that is unusually curved.
If your ingrown toenail is less severe, you do not have diabetes or poor circulation, and there are no signs of infection, you may decide to try home care first. (However, you can definitely still call us instead if you just don’t want to deal with the hassle. For most people that really is the better choice!)
Need a Same Day Appointment? Call 1-804-273-1717
You may be able to find relief using the following process:
While this process can work for less severe ingrown toenails, it’s not our primary recommendation for most patients. Professional treatment is faster, safer, more reliable, and has a lower risk of infection, even for mild cases. Far too often, we end up treating people with severe ingrown toenails who could have saved themselves a lot of time and discomfort by calling us at the first sign of trouble!
When home care is not enough, not desired, or you are faced with a toenail that is constantly becoming ingrown, it is time to come see us for professional care. Depending on your situation, we may need to remove either a part or all of the nail. The toe is numbed for the procedure, so you’ll only feel pressure—not pain.
This procedure only takes about 5-10 minutes, and you’ll be able to drive home afterward. We recommend you keep your feet up and stick to open-toed shoes for the rest of the day, but for the most part people can return to normal daily activities within 24 hours.
By the time the anesthetic wears off, you should notice a significant improvement in your symptoms. If you continue to feel mild discomfort, intermittent icing and over-the-counter anti-inflammatories should be more than sufficient to handle it over the next several days. If pain persists or is severe, give us a call.
If recurring ingrown toenails are a problem for you, we can also remove the corresponding portion of the nail bed and stop the growth of new nail tissue. This solves the problem permanently.
Ingrown toenail prevention is a matter of a few proactive measures:
There are certainly instances where you will be able to take care of an ingrown toenail at home, but remember that we are also available to provide professional treatment for the condition. As previously noted, if there is pus or redness that has started to spread, do not attempt to handle it on your own. Contact our Glen Allen, VA podiatrist office instead and have our medical specialists do it for you.
You can reach Achilles Foot and Ankle Center by calling (804) 273-1717 and our staff will be glad to provide more information and answer any questions you might have. If you prefer, you can schedule your appointment with our office online today.