Paris Foot & Ankle Clinic

Ingrown Toenails Specialist

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Ingrown Toenails services offered in Paris and Sulphur Springs, Sulphur Springs, TX

Ingrown toenails can cause major discomfort, and when left untreated, they can lead to infection and complications like sepsis or gangrene. At Paris Foot & Ankle Clinic, Michael Lenertz, DPM, understands how uncomfortable ingrown toenails can be and provides treatments to help relieve the pain they cause. To schedule a consultation, call the Paris Foot & Ankle Clinic office in Paris, Texas, or use the online booking page today.

Ingrown Toenails Q & A

What are ingrown toenails?

Ingrown toenails are nails that grow into the skin around a toe. The most common area for ingrown toenails is the corners of the big toes. 

When you have an ingrown toenail, the nail curves down at the edges instead of growing straight out. 

What are the symptoms of ingrown toenails?

Ingrown toenails can cause issues such as red skin, swelling, and pain on the affected side of the toe. Because the ingrown nail punctures your skin, it creates a tiny opening, similar to any other skin wound. This means that bacteria can invade the skin to cause an infection.

An infected ingrown toenail may be quite painful. It often feels warm or hot to the touch, and it may ooze smelly fluid or pus. If left untreated, the infection can also spread to other parts of your toe and foot. 

What causes ingrown toenails?

The main cause of ingrown toenails is trimming nails too close to the skin. Trimming your nails too short can allow the bordering skin to overlap the nail as it grows back, causing the ingrown nail. Filing or trimming your nails in a curved shape, with very rounded corners, can also encourage the nail to grow in the wrong direction.

Some other factors that may contribute to ingrown toenails include:

  • Genetic predisposition to large nail plates or curved nails
  • Wearing too-tight shoes
  • Toe injuries (like stubbing your toe badly)
  • Repetitive activities (like kicking a ball)

Some conditions, like hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating), can increase your risk of developing ingrown toenails. While some diseases, like diabetes, may affect your ability to heal when you have an ingrown toenail, increasing your risk of infection and other complications. 

How are ingrown toenails treated?

Non-surgical ingrown toenail treatments 

Lifting and splinting the nail corner (a gutter splint) is a common approach for ingrown toenails. If you have an infection, your podiatrist also prescribes topical or oral antibiotics. 

Ingrown toenail surgery 

For recurrent ingrown toenails, you might need minimally invasive surgery to remove the ingrown portion of the nail. Your podiatrist can also apply a chemical solution, laser light, or other treatment to that portion of the nail root to keep it from growing back. Your nail will then be slightly narrowed but completely healthy.

To explore ingrown toenail treatments, call the Paris Foot & Ankle Clinic office in Paris, Texas, or use the online booking page today.