Ingrown nails can be an uncomfortable and painful nail condition that affects people of all ages, but they are especially common in those with flat feet or who wear tight shoes.
In this blog post, we’ll look at the causes of ingrown nails as well as how to prevent ingrown nails.
I’ll also discuss what to do if an ingrown nail does occur and outline the best treatment options available.
What Is An Ingrown Toenail?
An ingrown toenail is a common and sometimes painful condition that occurs when the edge of a toenail grows into the skin, usually on the sides of the big toe.
It can cause redness, swelling, and tenderness in the affected area. In extreme cases, an ingrown toenail can become infected and require medical attention.
When you have an ingrown toenail, you may experience discomfort or pain every time you put pressure on or move your toe.
You may also notice that the affected area is red and swollen, with a small bump containing pus or fluid.
If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can become infected and require antibiotics or other medical treatments.
A variety of factors can cause ingrown toenails, including ill-fitting shoes that exert too much pressure on the toes, trimming your toenails too short with fingernail clippers, or at an angle, genetics, and trauma to the toe.
People with curved or malformed nails, curved toes, or sweaty feet are more prone to ingrown toenails as well.
People with diabetes should also be aware of their risk for developing ingrown toenails, since it can lead to serious complications due to poor circulation.
If you’re concerned about developing an ingrown toenail, there are a few steps you can take to reduce your chances.
Always wear comfortable shoes that fit properly and don’t squish your toes, and kepe your feet clean too.
Make sure your toenails are trimmed straight across and not too short, either. You should also keep your feet dry as often as possible and avoid activities that involve a great deal of repetitive motion in your feet.
Can You Get Ingrown Fingernails?
Ingrown fingernails are a common, yet uncomfortable problem that many people suffer from.
While ingrown fingernails can be painful, it can be prevented with some simple precautions.
An ingrown fingernail occurs when a piece of the nail curves and grows into the skin that lines the nail bed. This can result in pain, redness, inflammation, and even infection.
It is common for the fingertip to become tender and painful when pressure is applied to the area.
The nail may also become discolored, making it difficult to differentiate from surrounding skin.
In many cases, the cause of an ingrown fingernail is improper trimming. When trimming your nails, be sure to use nail clippers that are clean and sharp.
This will reduce the chances of the nail curving and growing into the skin that lines the nail bed.
Make sure to trim your nails straight across. Avoid rounding the edges as this can cause your nail to curl downward into the skin.
Another cause of ingrown fingernails is wearing too tight fitting shoes. This can cause the nail to rub against the side of the shoe, resulting in it curling over and growing into the skin that lines the nail bed.
How To Identify The Start Of An Ingrown Toenail?
An ingrown toenail is an uncomfortable condition in which the corner or side of your nail grows into the soft tissue of your toe.
It typically occurs when your nails are cut too short, but it can also occur if you have fungal infections or poor foot hygiene.
If not treated, ingrown toenails can become infected and cause significant pain. To prevent this from happening, identify the start of an ingrown toenail and take steps to treat it before it gets worse.
Common signs that you may have an ingrown toenail include redness, swelling and tenderness around your nail bed, as well as a sharp pain when you press on the area.
If your toe is sore and warm to the touch, there’s a good chance that it may be infected. If you notice any of these signs, it’s good to take action quickly to prevent further damage from occurring.
One of the best ways to identify an ingrown nail is to have a professional evaluate your foot.
A podiatrist or other health care provider can help you determine the extent of the problem and provide advice on how to treat it.
If left untreated, an ingrown toenail can lead to infection and other complications, so it’s get help as soon as possible.
Why Are Ingrown Toe Nails So Painful?
Ingrown toe nails are an all-too-common issue that many people face, and the associated pain can be remarkably intense.
This is due to the fact that the tissues surrounding the nail bed, as well as the toe itself, are extremely sensitive and prone to infection.
When the edges of an ingrown toenail press into the surrounding tissue, it can cause extreme discomfort.
Those experiencing an ingrown toenail will likely notice redness and swelling due to the increased blood flow that accompanies a break in the skin.
Inflammation will also be present, contributing to the pain. In severe cases, an ingrown toenail can lead to infection, which causes a heightened level of discomfort.
Given how sensitive the area is, it’s not difficult to understand why ingrown toenails are so painful.
As well as pressing on the soft tissues in the area, the edges of an ingrown nail can pinch or even cut into the skin.
This just aggravates the tender tissue and increases the amount of pain felt. Those who suffer from diabetes may be at an even greater risk of pain due to their weakened immune system and decreased sensation in their feet.
All in all, it’s easy to see why ingrown toenails can be so painful. The area surrounding the nail is particularly sensitive, and the edges of an ingrown nail can put direct pressure onto this tissue.
How to Prevent Ingrown Nails
Ingrown nails are an unfortunately common condition wherein the corners or edges of the nails grow into the skin surrounding them, causing pain, inflammation, and sometimes even infection.
Fortunately, with some simple preventative measures, you can avoid the onset of this painful condition.
The most vital thing to do when attempting to prevent ingrown nails is to keep your nails trimmed.
Make sure to cut your nails straight across and avoid cutting them too short, as this can lead to the nail growing back into the skin.
Keep your cuticles healthy and moisturized to prevent any irritation or inflammation. If the skin is dry and cracked, it can be easier for the nail to become ingrown.
If you wear tight-fitting shoes, take extra precautions against ingrown nails. Shoes that are too tight or don’t fit properly can lead to the nail bed becoming pinched, which can cause the nail to grow sideways and into the skin.
Check your nails regularly for signs of ingrowth. If you see any discoloration or discomfort around the nail or in the surrounding skin, it is a good idea to consult with a doctor or podiatrist as soon as possible.
Once an ingrown nail has occurred, take proper care of it. Soaking the area in warm water several times a day can be helpful in reducing inflammation and pain. It can be beneficial to use an over-the-counter antiseptic cream or ointment to help fight any infection.
How Can Open-Toed Shoes Prevent Ingrown Toenails?
Open-toed shoes provide plenty of room for your toes, allowing them to spread apart which helps prevent your toenails from digging into the sides of your toes.
They also provide more air circulation which can reduce the chance of infection due to fungus, bacteria, and sweat.
By choosing open-toed shoes, you can encourage better natural alignment for your feet and toes.
Traditional enclosed shoes force your toes into a specific shape, often times pushing them closer together. This can cause the nail to curve and grow inward instead of outward, leading to an ingrown toenail.
They also allow you to keep an eye on any problems your toenails may be having.
You can easily inspect them for any signs of redness or irritation, and make sure that your nail is trimmed correctly and is not too long or sharp.
If you catch any warning signs early, you can reduce the chances of having an ingrown toenail.
As with any type of footwear, it’s important to choose the right size and fit when it comes to open-toed shoes.
Make sure your toes aren’t cramped up in the shoe, as this can increase the chance of an ingrown toenail.
Shoes that are too long can also lead to other issues such as blisters or calluses, so it’s best to find a size that’s not too tight or too loose.
What Treatments Can Reverse An Ingrown Toenail?
When it comes to treating ingrown toenails, there are many different approaches that can be taken.
While some of these treatments involve medical intervention, such as a surgical procedure, others are simple lifestyle changes or home remedies.
However, before discussing all the possible treatments, it’s good to understand what an ingrown toenail is and why it happens.
An ingrown toenail is a common foot condition where the edges or corners of the toenail grow into the skin surrounding the nail. It can lead to infection, pain, and swelling.
Many different things can lead to an ingrown toenail, from injury to ill-fitting shoes. Ingrown toenails can affect any toe, but tend to be most common on the big toe.
The first step in treating an ingrown toenail is to start wearing proper-fitting shoes. Shoes that are too narrow can put your toes at risk of developing an ingrown toenail.
Wearing open toe shoes or sandals can also help, as they allow the foot to breathe and reduce friction.
Try to avoid activities that involve repetitive pressures on your toes, such as jogging or dancing.
Other simple treatments that can help reverse an ingrown toenail include trimming the toenail properly. When trimming the nail, make sure to cut it straight across and not at an angle.
This will help reduce the chance of the edge becoming embedded in the skin again.
Soaking your foot in warm water for around 15 minutes a day can also help reduce inflammation and soften the nail so that it does not grow into the skin.
How Can Nail Clippers Lead To Ingrown Nails?
Nail clippers can lead to ingrown nails when used incorrectly. An ingrown nail occurs when the corner or side of a nail curves and grows into the skin.
Often causing pain, redness, tenderness around the area, and infection. It is most common on the big toes or thumbs, but it can also occur on other fingers.
Using incorrect technique with a pair of nail clippers is the primary cause of ingrown nails.
If you clip your nails too short or at an angle that is not straight across from one corner to another, this can cause them to grow into the skin surrounding them.
If you do not thoroughly file down rough edges after clipping your nails – especially after cutting them short – these sharp corners will eventually curl and dig into your skin which triggers an ingrown nail.
Be mindful when trimming your nails– always making sure that you are following the correct steps so as to minimize chances of creating uncomfortable conditions like ingrown nails.
Make sure that you cut straight across each nail in a single edge– not angled– cut; this prevents uneven growth (especially at either end) which often leads to discomfort and infection.
Also ensure that you’re regularly filing any excess rough nail edges off as they appear: having jagged edges upon your fingernails invites an ingrown nail much more so than blunt ones do.
Taking care of your hands and feet should be done with consideration; by using correct techniques when trimming nails with a pair of clippers we make sure our fingers stay comfortable and healthy.
Use your toenail clippers with caution – avoid rounding over or digging under the ends of your fingertips – for best results against developing uncomfortable situations such as painful ingrowns due to improper use of nail clippers.
What Happens If You Don’t Treat An Ingrown Toenail?
If left untreated, an ingrown edge can become quite painful and lead to infection.
Infection can spread beyond the nail bed and into the surrounding tissue, causing swelling, redness, and warmth in the area.
In some cases, it may even cause an abscess or a collection of pus that requires draining. If the infection is not addressed, it can spread and even enter the bloodstream.
Sometimes, it may require hospitalization and intravenous antibiotics. To prevent this from happening, treat an ingrown toenail as soon as possible by soaking the area in warm water and applying topical ointments or oral antibiotics prescribed by your doctor.
When Should You See A Doctor For Your Ingrown Toenail?
It may be time to visit a doctor if you have an ingrown toenail and the home remedies are not helping or if you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- pain that doesn’t go aways
- welling, redness
- pus coming from around the nail
- foul odor
Severe cases of ingrown toenails can cause infection, so seek medical help if the condition is not improving or symptoms are worsening.
If you’re diabetic, have poor circulation, or experience other chronic health issues, it is especially essential that you see a doctor right away, should you get signs of infection.
Your foot specialist may clean the wound around the ingrown nail and remove any debris and dead skin.
They may also suggest using a topical antibiotic cream or ointment to help the wound heal faster, once you’ve had nail surgery to remove the problem nail.
Ingrown nails are common and can be painful, so it is important to take preventive measures when trimming your nails.
Make sure you cut the nail straight across and file off any jagged edges with a nail file or emery board.
Soak the area in warm water several times a day and apply topical ointment if needed.
If you experience any signs of infection, such as pus, redness, swelling, or fever, visit your doctor right away. Taking the proper steps can help you prevent and manage painful ingrown nails.
Hi, my name is Gemma, and I’m the owner of MakeupMuddle.com. I’m a true beauty obsessive, and love writing about anything to do with beauty – I have been a beauty writer since 2012.
As well as owning Makeup Muddle, I also own GemmaEtc.com, and love sharing my thoughts and feelings about the greatest (and not so great) beauty products!