Toenails, Ingrown - Ingrown toenails (unguis incarnatus) are acommon toenail problem of uncertain etiology. Various causes include poorly fit (tight) footwear, infection, improperly trimmed toenails, trauma, and heredity. The great toe is the most commonly involved.
An ingrown toenail is a common condition in which the corner or side of one of your toenails grows into the soft flesh of your toe. The result is pain, redness, swelling and, sometimes, an infection. The condition usually affects your big toe.
In most cases, you can take care of ingrown toenails on your own. If the pain is severe or spreading, however, your doctor can take steps to relieve your discomfort and help you avoid complications.
If you have diabetes or another condition that causes poor circulation to your feet, you're at greater risk of complications.
Seek a doctor's advice earlier on caring for an ingrown toenail.
To help prevent an ingrown toenail:
Trim your toenails straight across. Don't curve your nails to match the shape of the front of your toe. See a podiatrist every three months to have your nails professionally treated if you have circulation problems in your feet.
Keep toenails at a moderate length. Trim toenails so they are even with the tip of your toes. If you trim your toenails too short, the pressure from your shoes on your toes' tissue may direct your nails to grow into the tissue.
Wear shoes that fit properly. Shoes that place excessive pressure on your toes or pinch your toes may cause your nails to grow into surrounding tissue. If you have nerve impairment to your feet, you may not be able to sense if your shoes fit too tightly. Take care to buy and wear properly fitted shoes, preferably from a shoe store specializing in fitting shoes for people with foot problems.
Wear protective footwear. If your work puts you at risk of injuring your toes, buy footwear, such as steel-toed shoes, that protects your toes.
Ingrown toenails > 1 > 2 > 3 > 4