An ingrown toenail can be an extremely painful experience, especially when your footwear is pushing on the toes and causing the painful situation to intensify with every step. Ingrown toenails can also lead to a bacterial or fungal infection, but fortunately, many instances of ingrown toenails can be prevented.
4 tips to help prevent ingrown toenails include the following:
- Get treatment for toe deformities—As toe deformities like bunions and overlapping toes progress, the pressure on the sides of your toes increases, making the development of ingrown toenails more likely. You can purchase reasonably effective toe separators and bunion braces over the counter or see your foot doctor for custom orthotics.
- Cut your toenails properly—Be careful not to cut your toenails too short and also try to cut them on just a slight curve or straight across. This will help keep the edge of the nail from growing into the tender skin.
- Wear shoes that fit correctly—Shoes that are too tight, especially in the toe box area, will push your toes together and the pressure can cause an ingrown toenail. Have your feet properly measured and choose a wider and deeper toe box to prevent rubbing and to provide room for pads and inserts.
- Avoid foot injuries—Another major cause of ingrown toenails is a foot injury. Dropping something heavy on your toe can cause a toenail to grow abnormally. Wearing sturdy shoes with steel inserts if necessary will prevent this type of toe injury.
Even with proper preventative care, you may still develop a painful ingrown toenail and need the expertise of your foot doctor. Call Syracuse Podiatry located in East Syracuse, New York. Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico, Dr. Kathleen Pyatak-Hugar, and Dr. Donal M. Erickson and their staff will help you diagnose and treat your foot or ankle condition. Call 315-446-3668 or make an appointment online today.