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Causes and Treatment for Ingrown Toenails

Tuesday, 19 March 2024 00:00

Ingrown toenails can turn simple movements into a painful experience and even lead to infections if left untreated. Ingrown toenails develop when a toenail grows into the surrounding skin, particularly prevalent in the big toe. Factors like wearing ill-fitting footwear, genetics, improper nail trimming, or trauma are common causes of ingrown toenails. Symptoms can include pain, swelling, and redness around the affected nail. Prevention involves wearing properly fitted shoes with roomy toe boxes, trimming nails straight across, and avoiding tight socks. For help in managing severe, infected, or recurring ingrown toenails, treatment from a podiatrist is suggested. This foot doctor can prescribe antibiotics for infections or surgical removal of the toenail, if necessary. A podiatrist can also recommend methods to avoid ingrown toenails in the future. It is suggested that you schedule an appointment with a podiatrist at the first sign of an ingrown toenail.

Ingrown toenails may initially present themselves as a minor discomfort, but they may progress into an infection in the skin without proper treatment. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Kendall Blackwell of InStride Wilson Podiatry Associates. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are caused when the corner or side of a toenail grows into the soft flesh surrounding it. They often result in redness, swelling, pain, and in some cases, infection. This condition typically affects the big toe and may recur if it is not treated properly.


  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Genetics
  • Improper shoe fitting
  • Injury from pedicures or nail picking
  • Abnormal gait
  • Poor hygiene

You are more likely to develop an ingrown toenail if you are obese, have diabetes, arthritis, or have any fungal infection in your nails. Additionally, people who have foot or toe deformities are at a higher risk of developing an ingrown toenail.


Some symptoms of ingrown toenails are redness, swelling, and pain. In rare cases, there may be a yellowish drainage coming from the nail.


Ignoring an ingrown toenail can have serious complications. Infections of the nail border can progress to a deeper soft-tissue infection, which can then turn into a bone infection. You should always speak with your podiatrist if you suspect you have an ingrown toenail, especially if you have diabetes or poor circulation.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Wilson, NC . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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