Ingrown Toenail

Pain, tenderness, and redness around the nail bed could be a sign of an ingrown toenail.

To treat this condition before it becomes infected, visit Dr. Benjamin Tehrani, DPM, at Kings Point Foot & Ankle Specialists in Los Angeles.

As a podiatric surgeon and sports medicine specialist, Dr. Tehrani treats ingrown toenails and other foot problems with precise and compassionate care. To get started, book a consultation online or call the Downtown Los Angeles, CA or Beverly Hills, CA, office today.

What causes an ingrown toenail?

An ingrown toenail, or onychocryptosis, is a common condition that occurs when the sides of the toenail grow into the surrounding skin. There are numerous risk factors and causes for an ingrown toenail, such as:

  • Improper toenail trimming
  • Wearing ill-fitting shoes or socks
  • Injuring your toe or repetitive stress on the feet
  • Having curved toenails
  • Sports, such as running, tennis, soccer, or basketball
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Genetic disposition

An ingrown toenail is also more likely to develop if you don’t maintain proper foot hygiene, or if you have fungal infections.

What are the symptoms of an ingrown toenail?

An ingrown toenail develops when the edges of the nail break through the surrounding skin. Symptoms of an ingrown toenail include:

  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness

If left untreated, an infection may develop.

Most frequently, ingrown toenails affect larger toes, but any toe is susceptible.

What is the treatment for an ingrown toenail?

There are three stages of ingrown toenails: mild, moderate, and severe. Dr. Tehrani can diagnose the condition and its stage based on your symptoms, and with a physical examination of the nail and the surrounding skin.

Depending on the severity of your symptoms, he usually recommends topical or oral antibiotics to treat an ingrown toenail. If your condition doesn’t improve, he might recommend phenol matrixectomy surgery to remove a part of the toenail or the whole toenail. This surgery is a common procedure that Dr. Tehrani performs in his office under a local anesthetic.

Will my ingrown toenail come back?

Surgery and other methods usually prevent an ingrown toenail from returning. However, it’s necessary to take precautions so the condition doesn’t affect other toes in the future. Some ways to take care of your feet include:

  • Cut your nails straight across, instead of diagonally
  • Wash your feet every day
  • Wear roomy and comfortable shoes that fit properly
  • Change your socks regularly
  • Check your feet periodically for signs of an ingrown toenail or other problems

To maintain perfect health in your toes and feet, you need a regular podiatric check from a professional. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Tehrani about ingrown toenail treatment or another problem, book an appointment online or call the office.