Front Range Foot and Ankle Clinic
Daniel Mallett, DPM
Podiatrist & Wound Care Specialist located in Parker, CO
An ingrown toenail hurts, and it can trigger a serious infection if untreated. Dedicated podiatrist Daniel Mallett, DPM, at Front Range Foot and Ankle Clinic offers ingrown toenail treatments of every type at his comfortable Parker, Colorado, office. For effective treatment and immediate relief of your ingrown toenail pain, call the office or book an appointment online today.
Ingrown Toenail Q&A
What is an ingrown toenail?
An ingrown toenail occurs when the outer nail corners grow into the surrounding skin. The invading nail irritates the skin, causing uncomfortable symptoms. If untreated, you can develop an infection that could potentially move down to the bones below.
What are the symptoms of an ingrown toenail?
An ingrown toenail usually causes symptoms in the immediate area including:
- Pain or tenderness
- Red skin
- Swollen skin
- Blood, pus, or watery drainage from the toe
Your symptoms can worsen if an infection occurs, and the infection may spread inward if you don't seek treatment.
If you have diabetes or any other condition that affects your immune function, symptoms can grow severe quickly. In this situation, it's important to seek diabetic foot care immediately when you notice the first signs of an ingrown toenail.
What causes ingrown toenails?
The most common causes of an ingrown toenail include:
- Rounding nail borders when you trim
- Inherited nail size and type
- Wearing tight shoes
- Stubbing your toe
- Foot trauma, e.g., from soccer or ballet
Most of these causes are controllable, so it's important to take precautions as recommended by Dr. Mallett following your treatment.
How do you treat an ingrown toenail?
Your exact treatment depends on the severity of your ingrown toenail, which Dr. Mallett confirms through an exam and, in some cases, X-ray imaging.
In general, Dr. Mallett uses conservative approaches to treat ingrown toenails. For a mildly ingrown toenail without serious symptoms, he may lift the corner of the nail and place a tiny splint beneath it to prevent it from embedding again.
Moderate to severe cases
For a moderate to severe ingrown toenail, Dr. Mallett may remove the ingrown sliver of nail. If you have recurring ingrown toenails, he may treat the nail matrix (its base) with phenol to prevent regrowth in that area.
After this in-office procedure, your nail appears slightly narrower, but it's not a dramatic difference and the nail still covers your toe. Dr. Mallett may prescribe a topical ointment to encourage healing, or an oral antibiotic if you have a serious infection.
At Front Range Foot and Ankle Clinic, Dr. Mallett offers quick and effective ingrown toenail relief. If you need help, call the office or click on the online appointment maker.