Foot & Ankle Surgery located in Fort Worth and Weatherford, TX

Why You Keep Getting Ingrown Toenails

misc image

Why You Keep Getting Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are a common foot problem that can happen for many reasons and sadly can affect feet repeatedly. Treating this illness is one thing, but why does it come back and what can you do about it?

Our feet are the bottom part of our bodies, bearing our weight when we walk and every other action we perform when standing. They are also vital to maintaining balance, and our toes are an important part of why. From the moment we master standing up as toddlers, our toes are essential to standing up, remaining balanced while doing so, and helping to push us forward as we walk or run.

This means that problems that affect our toes can also create problems for standing and almost everything else we do with our feet. Ingrown toenails are a common but fairly minor problem that can happen occasionally or chronically hurt your feet. If not treated properly, it can get infected, leading to other complications. To prevent having to deal with this problem on a regular basis, let’s examine what ingrown toenails are, their causes and symptoms, and why the problem becomes chronic.

If you live in the Fort Worth or Weatherford, Texas area, and you’re struggling with pain and other signs of ingrown toenails, Drs. Gary Driver, Glen Beede, Gregory Jaryga, and their experienced medical staff at Trinity Foot & Ankle Specialists can help.

Understanding ingrown toenails

This condition results from the side or corner of your toenail growing into the soft flesh on the side of the nail. It is common in the big toe but can happen in any of them and happens in both men and women. Additionally, if your toenail grows along the shape of your toe, it can cause it to grow into the surrounding skin. This ailment is common enough that 2 out of 10 people who go to food specialists to get treated are coping with this condition.

Causes and symptoms

This foot condition is often tied to people with sweaty feet, making it common among teens, athletes, and people who don’t focus on keeping their feet dry. Other contributing factors include cutting your toenails improperly (cutting at an angle instead of straight across), irregular toenails, ill-fitting footwear, poor posture, toenail injuries, and genetic predisposition to the illness.

In the early stages, this problem presents with skin next to the nail getting swollen, tender, or hard, fluid building up surrounding the toe, or experiencing pain when putting pressure on the toe. If the toe becomes infected, you can expect swollen, red skin, bleeding, pain, pus (often oozing), and skin overgrowing.

Reasons for chronic ingrown toenails

Many of the risk factors for this foot condition are repeatable, and if you don’t realize the cause, it can easily lead to chronic issues, such as continuing to wear ill-fitting shoes, not properly caring for feet (keeping them clean and dry), improper trimming of toenails, and athletic activities that put pressure on your toes. Not changing these factors will only increase the risks of further issues. Other things that can lead to chronic issues include foot, toes, or nail deformities, toenails that curve into the skin, and fungal infections.

If you’re struggling with ingrown toenails, we have ways to help your feet, such as lifting and removing a nail segment and even chemical and laser treatments to improve toenail health. If you’re ready to see how we can help with this ailment, make an appointment with Drs. Driver, Beede, Jaryga, and their team at Trinity Foot & Ankle Specialists today.