Why Do I Have Ingrown Toenails?


When the sharp corner or edge of your toenail grows sideways into the tender skin on your toe, it can cause severe pain, bleeding, oozing, and infection that can be difficult to treat without help from your foot doctor properly.  Sometimes ingrown toenails can occur without causing any pain and discomfort, but when those nails do cause problems, it is usually because other issues have worsened them.

3 leading causes of ingrown toenails include the following:

  • They are hereditary—Developing ingrown toenails is often due to an inherited tendency. Certain inherited foot and toe shapes are also more susceptible to developing ingrown toenail problems. Thanks, mom, and dad!
  • Poor toenail cutting technique—A major cause of painful and debilitating ingrown toenails is self-inflicted: Cutting your toenails too short or on too much of a curve can get the nail started growing in the wrong direction and lead to an ingrown toenail forming. Keep your toenails about the same length as your toe tips and cut them straight across or on just a slight curve to decrease the likelihood of this happening.
  • Tightly fitting shoes— Your toes need room to move, and tight-fitting shoes like high heels prevent that from happening and push your toes tightly together, increasing side pressure. This constant pressure while you are wearing ill-fitting shoes can cause ingrown toenails and a host of other foot and ankle problems.

If you are experiencing pain and discomfort with ingrown toenails, enlisting the services of a skilled foot doctor will help you get the relief you need. 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.

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