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What are ingrown toenails?

An ingrown toenail is a common problem that affects both adults and children. It can be extremely painful, often making walking and weight-bearing activities difficult. The edges of the toenail will grow into the skin, causing pain and possibly infection.

Symptoms and signs of an ingrown toenail include pain, swelling, redness, irritation to the toe from shoes, drainage, and possible infection.

 

What causes ingrown toenails?

The condition can occur from trimming your toenails too short or not trimming them straight across. Injury to the nail and shoes that fit too tight around the toes (and cause crowding) can also lead to ingrown toenails.

 

Why should I seek help to treat an ingrown toenail?

If you leave an ingrown toenail untreated, the infection can spread to the bone underneath your toe and cause serious problems. Complications are even more serious if you have diabetes, because of decreased blood circulation and nerve damage in your feet.

 

How can I treat my ingrown toenails?

A doctor's visit is the first step to properly diagnosing your toe pain as an ingrown toenail. Treatment may include antibiotics and a possible minor procedure to treat the problem. The treatment is relatively painless and can often be performed the same day as your office visit.

At Raleigh Foot and Ankle Center, our doctors have performed thousands of these procedures with excellent results. A local anesthetic is used to numb the toe, so you won't feel any pain. A chemical is often used to prevent regrowth of the offending toenail growing into the skin. It helps 95% of patients, usually offering a permanent solution to a recurring problem. Most patients are back to regular shoes and school or work the next day. Within a few days, most are back to regular activities.

 

What can I do to prevent an ingrown toenail?

You can start by making sure you do not cut your toenails too short or let them grow too long. You also want to make sure to trim the nails straight across, not curved across the toe. Be sure to wear shoes that fit properly; do not wear shoes that cramp your toes, as this can cause ingrown toenails.

If you think that you may have an ingrown toenail, call our office at (919) 850-9111 today and make an appointment to get diagnosed by one of our doctors, who will work with you to determine the right treatment. Raleigh Foot and Ankle Center has been helping people overcome toenail problems for years. Our board-certified foot and ankle doctors have nearly 50 years of combined experience. They can help you, too.

 

 

To schedule an appointment for treatment of an ingrown toenail, please call our office at (919) 850-9111 or use our online Request an Appointment form. We serve patients from Raleigh, Cary and Wake Forest in Wake County, NC and surrounding communities in and around the Raleigh-Durham Area and the rest of North Carolina. Hablamos Español.

Our Team

Dr. Robert M. Hatcher DPM, FACFAS

Dr. Hatcher is from Wilmington, North Carolina. He attended North Carolina State University, graduating with a degree in Zoology. He then attended the University of Georgia for graduate school, studying physiology, before completing four years of medical school at the Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine...

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Dr. Kirk E. WoelfferDPM, FACFAS

Dr. Woelffer hails from Mound, Minnesota. After graduating from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, he went on to obtain his medical degree from Des Moines University in Iowa. He then completed his surgical training at Deaconess Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, under the guidance of Dr. Allen M. Jacobs...

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Dr. Alan P. Boehm, Jr. DPM, FACFAS

Dr. Boehm was born in Sandpoint, Idaho. As part of a military family, he spent time all over the country and four years in Japan during his childhood years. Dr. Boehm went to high school and college in Georgia. He graduated from Temple University in Philadelphia with a degree in Podiatric Medicine and stayed to complete...

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Dr. Jordan D. MeyersDPM, AACFAS

Dr. Meyers was born in Tucson, Arizona, but spent most of his life in North Carolina. After graduating from East Carolina University with degrees in both Athletic Training and Chemistry, he went on to the Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine in Philadelphia, PA. Dr. Meyers completed his surgical training...

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