An ingrown toenail can be debilitating if you don’t seek professional treatment right away. Board-certified podiatrist Felicia Armstrong, DPM, knows how quickly an ingrown toenail can affect your ability to walk without pain. At Maryland Podiatry Services in Baltimore, Maryland, she performs a number of effective treatments to relieve your pain and improve the health of your toenail. Call or book an appointment online today to learn more.
An ingrown toenail occurs when the edge of your toenail begins growing into the surrounding skin. At first, ingrown toenails are painful and uncomfortable. Over time, however, the surrounding flesh can start growing over the nail, causing further complications and infection.
Most ingrown toenails occur on the big toe, where you notice nail growth most, but they can develop in any of your toenails.
If you have an ingrown toenail, you may experience:
Without proper care, an ingrown toenail can grow into your skin to the point that it starts to bleed and ooze pus.
There are many reasons you may have an ingrown toenail, such as:
People with sweaty feet are more likely to have ingrown toenails, which is why they often occur in teenagers. Because your toenails naturally thicken with age, they are also prevalent in seniors.
Many home treatments are effective at eliminating ingrown toenails. Soaking your feet in warm water and gently pushing the skin away from the ingrown nail can help treat it. To prevent or treat an infection at the site, you may need antibiotics.
If at-home treatments don’t eliminate your ingrown toenail, Dr. Armstrong recommends surgical intervention. There are several surgical treatments for ingrown toenails, including partial and total nail removal.
Partial nail removal involves taking away the part of the nail growing into your skin, while a total removal takes the entire nail. Both surgical interventions offer a safe, effective treatment for ingrown toenails.
Your foot must remain bandaged and elevated for the few days after your surgery to promote healing.
If you have a partial nail removal, your toenail should start to grow back within a few months. It typically takes up to a year for your nail to grow back after a total removal.
To treat your painful ingrown toenail, call Maryland Podiatry Services or book an appointment online today.