Ingrown toenails are a common foot issue, accounting for about 20% of foot-related doctor visits. But fortunately, ingrown toenails are a preventable and treatable problem.
At Family Foot and Ankle Center of South Jersey, our experienced team of providers uses a patient-focused approach. We take the time to educate you about ingrown toenail prevention while also providing compassionate care when you need ingrown toenail treatment fast.
This month’s blog focuses on ingrown toenail prevention, particularly the steps to clip your nails properly. Read on to find out how ingrown toenail trimming should work.
How to clip your nails
Ingrown toenails develop if the edge of the nail is positioned to grow down (toward the foot) instead of out and away from it. When the nail grows down, the lateral folds — the skin at the corners of your toes — can quickly grow around it; this leads to redness, swelling, pain, and potential infection.
You can avoid an ingrown nail if you:
- Clip your nails in a straight line (never curved)
- Use a nail clipper with even, not curved, blades
- Clip nails even with the tips of your toes (never shorter)
- Gently file rough edges in a straight line
Of course, other factors can contribute to ingrown toenails, too, such as wearing too-tight shoes frequently or playing sports that involve a lot of kicking, like soccer. Some people have a genetic predisposition to ingrown nails.
It’s especially crucial for people with diabetes to practice good diabetic foot care, including proper nail care, to avoid ingrown toenails. The disease often cuts down on circulation to the feet and makes it hard to heal, so ingrown toenails in people with diabetes are far more likely to turn into infections and even ulcers.
Regardless of risk factors, proper nail-clipping techniques can minimize your chance of developing ingrown nails.
Treatment for an ingrown toenail
If you already have an ingrown nail, you need more than prevention: It’s important to treat the issue now to avoid complications like severe infection.
Our team offers compassionate care for ingrown toenails, including foot soaks, lifting the corner of the nail, and removing the ingrown part of the nail. You may also need topical or oral antibiotics if you have a toenail infection.
We perform all ingrown toenail services conveniently in our Cherry Hill office, so contact us online or call our office for help today.