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What are Ingrown Toenails?
An ingrown toenail occurs when the side of the nail grows into the skin around it. It often causes pain and the area becomes red, swollen and tender. Ingrown toenails may also become infected.
Ingrown toenails are extremely common. Any toe can be affected but they most commonly occur on the big toe.
What causes Ingrown Toenails?
Ingrown toenails may be caused by:
- Toenails with highly curved edges or that are fan-shaped
- Improperly trimmed toenails
- Injury to your toe, e.g. stubbing it
- Pressure from improper fitting shoes or socks that crowd your toes, putting pressure on your toenails
How can Ingrown Toenails be treated?
Our highly trained Podiatrists will assess the nail, assess the cause of the ingrown nail and provide skilled treatment to resolve the ingrown nail. At ProMed we have a number of treatment options depending on the cause, your personal preferences and desired outcome.
Treatment options include:
1. REMOVE THE OFFENDING ‘SPIKE’ OF NAIL
The Podiatrist uses a special narrow tool to trim off the small corner of nail which is ingrown. This procedure is not usually painful and does not require local anaesthetic. It is often the first treatment offered for ingrown nails as it usually fixes the problem and provides immediate pain relief. However, it is not guaranteed to be a permanent fix as the portion of nail can regrow.
2. NAIL BRACING – CORRECTION OF NAIL SHAPE
This technique is highly successful for correcting the nail shape and preventing future ingrown nails. A customised brace is applied to your nail and it applies pressure to the outer edges of the nail to reduce the curvature. It is painless and does not require any anaesthetic. Instant relief is achieved on the first application but like bracing of teeth it can take 6 months or more to achieve permanent correction. Refer to the section on nail bracing for more information.
3. INGROWN TOENAIL SURGERY – THE PERMANENT SOLUTION
This minor surgical procedure is offered for patients who suffer with recurrent ingrown nails. It involves the removal of a small part of the side of the nail, followed by the application of a chemical which prevents that small section of the nail from regrowing.
The procedure is performed in our clinic, and takes approximately one hour. Local anaesthetic is used to ensure the procedure is pain free. Different health practitioners may use different surgical techniques, but studies have shown our method to be the most effective, with a 97% success rate.
What to expect at your first consultation?
Your first consultation will involve assessment of the nail and its cause. Your Podiatrist may recommend removing the “offending spike” which is usually done during your consultation and is included in your consultation fee.
During this appointment, your Podiatrist will also discuss which treatment option would be the most beneficial for full resolution of your condition.
Please call our friendly staff to book an appointment for Ingrown nail care on 07 5522 1230 or Book Online.