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An ingrown toenail occurs when the edge of the toenail grows into the skin next to it. This usually results in the surrounding skin becoming inflamed and very tender. If left untreated, the affected area usually becomes infected. Ingrown toenails can occur in all age groups. They most often occur in the big toenail. Continue

Causes of Ingrown Toenails

· Fungal Infection

· Improper trimming of the nail

· Injury to the nail

· Poorly fitting shoes

· Inherited nail deformity

Trimming Your Toenails

The correct way to cut a toenail is straight across. The outer nail should be even with the end of the toe. Trimming too closely and rounding the edges of the nail should be avoided. An emery board may be used to smooth the nail edge.


Warm soaks

· Reduce pressure on the toe (cut-out shoe or sandal)

· Local antibiotic ointments

· Prescription antibiotics taken by mouth

· Cotton packing under the corner of the nail

When this is a recurrent problem, a permanent narrowing of the nail can be done by removing the germinal matrix (the source of nail growth) along the edge of the nail plate.

This can be done as a day surgery procedure.

The toe may be sore and tender for a few days following the nail removal. The nail bed should be completely healed in approximately two to four weeks. During this time, you should be prepared to wear a postoperative shoe or an open toed sandal. This will help to avoid unnecessary pressure on the toenail.

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