Posts for tag: Ingrown Toenails
An ingrown toenail is a common foot problem that occurs when the corner of a toenail, usually the big toe, grows into the skin. As you might imagine, this can cause pain and swelling in the affected area. If you are a healthy individual you can often treat the ingrown toenail with simple at-home care; however, patients with diabetes, nerve damage in the feet or signs of a foot infection should always see a podiatrist as soon as possible.
Causes of an Ingrown Toenail
There are several factors that could increase your risk for developing an ingrown toenail. These include:
- Heredity: if your family has a history of ingrown toenails you may be more likely to develop them, too.
- Poorly fitted shoes: shoes that are too tight and cramp up the toes can also cause painful ingrown toenails, particularly in teens whose feet are still growing rapidly
- Improper nail trimming: if you cut your nails too short or if you cut them at an angle rather than cutting them straight across you could be leaving yourself prone to an ingrown toenail
- Injury to the toe: jamming or stubbing the toe can also increase the risk of an ingrown toenail (this is most common in athletes)
Treating an Ingrown Toenail
If there are no signs of an infection (e.g. foul odor; skin that’s hot to the touch) and you are otherwise healthy then you can probably treat the ingrown toenail all by yourself from the comfort of your home. Take frequent Epsom salt soaks and apply an antibiotic cream to the area to prevent infection. Again, if there is no infection you can soak nails for several minutes so that they soften, and then gently clip away the affected area of the nail.
If you are experiencing signs of an infected ingrown toenail or if you have diabetes and develop an ingrown toenail it’s important that you seek a podiatrist’s care right away. A podiatrist can treat the infection while also removing part of or the entire nail so that it grows in properly.
Preventing Ingrown Toenails
While there are certain factors such as heredity that cannot be helped, there are certainly measures you can take to reduce your risk for ingrown toenails. For one, always make sure that you wear properly fitted shoes that do not put pressure on the toes.
Secondly and most importantly, you need to know how to properly trim your toenails. Nails should be level with the tips of your toes. If nails are cut too short or if you trim your nails so they are curved at the edges rather than straight then an ingrown toenail is more likely to develop as the nail grows out.
Athletes should also make sure that they are wearing appropriate footwear for their chosen sport. Not all tennis shoes are created equally so if you have any questions about the footwear that you should wear, don’t hesitate to speak with your foot doctor.
The heightened blood glucose levels that come with diabetes can cause nerve damage to the extremities, so the hands and feet are usually the first places that complications arise. The reduced ability to feel pain or discomfort in your feet can cause you to neglect or not even notice injuries and disease, so extra care is needed.
4 essential foot care tips for patients who have diabetes include the following:
- Properly manage your disease—As a diabetic patient, be certain that you understand and follow all of your doctor’s recommendations for managing your disease. See your foot doctor regularly, especially if you have any problems like ingrown toenails or cuts that aren’t healing properly
- Perform daily foot inspections—Do a complete foot inspection every day and look for any blisters, scrapes, cuts, ingrown toenails, etc. Always make certain to check between your toes since infections often start in the cracks. Don’t forget to check the bottom of your feet. Using a mirror can make that easier if you have trouble.
- Keep your feet clean and dry—Wash your feet at least once every day with warm water and soap. Dry carefully, especially between your toes. Apply moisturizer to dry areas, but not between your toes to help avoid infections.
- Avoid cuts and injuries by protecting your feet—When you have diabetes, you should always wear protective shoes that have good support, even when just walking around the house or yard. Just getting a splinter or small cut can cause an unnoticed infection that can lead to amputation.
If you are experiencing foot complications caused or exacerbated by diabetes, see your podiatrist for the proper care. Schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry Center in New Albany, IN. Our highly qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha, D.P.M., is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!
Since young children may not always be able to effectively communicate a foot or ankle problem, it’s important to pay attention to the way your child moves. Walking on the toes, limping, and foot-dragging are indications that he or she is suffering from some type of foot or ankle disease or injury. Be sure to take your child to see your foot doctor to accurately determine what is happening.
3 common childhood foot conditions include the following:
- Sever’s disease—When the growth plate on your child’s heel becomes painful and swollen, it may be a sign of Sever’s disease. This usually happens between the ages of eight and fourteen when the bone growth plates are still developing. Sporting and exercise activities often have to be curtailed until the plates are fully formed.
- Ingrown toenails—This is a problem common in adults as well as kids. When a toenail grows incorrectly into the tender skin on the edge of the toe, it can quickly become painful and debilitating. Shoes and socks that are too tight can cause this to happen. Also, be sure to cut your child’s toenails correctly to minimize the formation of ingrown toenails. Always cut straight across or on a slight curve and don’t cut them too short.
- Plantar warts—Warts are the common and often bumpy skin condition that is caused by the human papilloma virus. Plantar warts grow on the bottom of the foot and are often hidden from view by thickened skin. A bump under the skin may indicate the presence of a plantar wart, and your child may have pain and discomfort when pressure is applied.
If your child is walking oddly or complaining of pain in the foot or ankle, your foot doctor can make the proper diagnosis and treatment recommendations. Schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry Center in New Albany, IN. Our highly-qualified podiatrist Dr. Zahid Ladha, D.P.M., is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!
- Plantar fasciitis
- Achilles tendinitis
- Heel pain
- Ankle sprains and fractures
- Foot fractures
- Sports-related injuries
- Bunions and hammertoes
- Corns and calluses
- Diabetic foot care
- Fungal infections
- Ingrown toenails
- Heel spurs
The toe condition known as the bunion (or bunionette as it is named when it appears on the pinky toe) begins as a small bony bump on the side or top of your big toe joint (or on the pinky toe for bunionettes). Bunions are usually not that painful in the initial stages which is why so many people ignore them until the pain and discomfort start to become more annoying.
Bunions tend to increase in size and severity rather slowly, but as a bunion grows and worsens, it can cause a wide variety of other toe and skin conditions which is a good reason to have them treated early.
Some of the conditions that can be exacerbated by bunions include the following:
- Blisters, redness, and swelling—Due to all the rubbing of the big toe against the inside of your footwear, severe irritation and blistering often occur.
- Toe deformities—People who have bunions increase the chances of developing a hammertoe on the second or third toe. Mallet and claw toes are also more common.
- Corns and calluses—Corns can form on or next to the bunion. Painful, oozing corns can also develop on the top of hammertoes.
- Ingrown toenails—As the big toe pushes against your footwear and other toes, it can cause the toenail to cut into the tender skin at the edge of the nail.
- Fungal toenails—A fungal toenail infection is also more likely to occur.
The earlier you get help with bunions from your foot doctor, the less problematic your bunions will eventually become. Schedule an appointment with the Foot First Podiatry Center in New Albany, IN. Our highly-qualified podiatrist, Dr. Zahid Ladha, D.P.M. is dedicated to providing the best diagnostic care and medical treatment for you and your feet. Contact us at (812) 945-9221 and schedule an appointment today!