If your toenails alone make your toes hurt, you should see a doctor to treat your ingrown toenail. Podiatrists Jacob Reinkraut, DPM, FACFAS; Michelle Suh, DPM, ABPM; and Danny Gomez, DPM, FACFAS, can remove part or all of your nail temporarily or permanently, depending on the extent of your condition. If you’re ready to eliminate your ingrown toenail, make an appointment at Complete Foot and Ankle online or over the phone at either the Ridgewood or Newark, New Jersey, location.

Ingrown Toenail Q & A

What’s an ingrown toenail?

An ingrown toenail happens when either the sides of your toenail start to curl around and grow into your skin or the skin grows over the edge of your toenail. Ingrown toenails are most likely to affect the big toe and become a recurring problem.

As the ingrown toenail grows into the skin around the nail, the skin becomes red, swollen, and tender. Eventually, the skin along the edge of the nail may become infected.

What causes ingrown toenails?

Any of the following factors may increase your chances of developing an ingrown toenail:

  • Not cutting your toenails properly
  • Wearing tight shoes
  • Injuries to the foot
  • Fungal infections
  • Congenital issues

When should I see a doctor for an ingrown toenail?

You should make an appointment with your podiatrist if any of the following situations apply to you:

  • Treating your toenail at home doesn’t clear it up after three days to a week
  • Signs of an infection (pus, inflammation, and pain)
  • Ingrown toenails become a recurring problem
  • Diabetes, nerve problems, or poor circulation accompany the pain

If your toe is infected and you develop an accompanying fever, you need to stop by Complete Foot and Ankle right away.

How do you treat ingrown toenails?

If your toe is infected, your podiatrist may prescribe an oral antibiotic along with an accompanying treatment. They might also surgically remove part or all of your toenail with one of the following surgical procedures:

  • Partial nail avulsion: removes part of the ingrown toenail, while leaving the nail bed intact
  • Complete nail plate avulsion: removes the entire ingrown toenail, while leaving the nail bed intact
  • Partial matrixectomy: removes the nail and part of the nail root on the ingrown side
  • Matrixectomy: permanently removes the entire toenail and nail root

If a painful ingrown toenail plagues you, contact Complete Foot and Ankle for an appointment to discuss your treatment options online or over the phone.