An ingrown toenail occurs when a corner of the nail grows into the skin of the toe. Often times, you may observe that the nail appears raised in the middle and the corners dive very deep down into the skin. You may also notice that attempting to cut the corners out brings some relief, but might become progressively short lived. Ingrown toenails are typically caused by genetic factors (runs in the family). In some other instances, they may be due to trauma, thickened nail, nail fungus, etc. Symptoms include redness and swelling around the toe, followed by pain. The pain may get so bad that even a gentle brush of your bed sheets will send a sharp pain to your toe/toes. If left untreated, ingrown nails can lead to infection (usually accompanied by some drainage) as well which becomes a very urgent matter.
When you come to the office, we will typically begin by discussing a few options. Sometimes conservative therapy is possible. However, in most cases (especially if the ingrown has been bothering you for a while) we will offer to remove the ingrown corners. You will be gently numbed in the toe first. Before any further steps are taken, we will check and make sure that you are properly numbed. Then, we removing the offending corner(s) of the nail. We also offer a permanent solution where we apply a chemical in the nail root to hopefully prevent re-growth of the ingrown sections.
If you have an ingrown toenail, don't be afraid to come in. Your treatment will be gentle and virtually painless, and we'll get you back to your normal activities right away.