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Posts for: March, 2020

All about ingrown toenails in Levittown, NYDoes your big toe hurt? Does it feel like something is biting down into it? Chances are good that you have an ingrown toenail - the medical term is onychocryptosis. (tuck that one away for a possible appearance on “Jeopardy!”) A corner or a side of your toenail is growing into the skin and if you leave it unchecked, it could wind up becoming infected - including a possible bone infection. This can be problematic for many and very dangerous for people who have diabetes. 


This is a problem that affects many people and is often the reason for a good portion of visits to a podiatrist. While these appointments can help in the short term, they can also become recurring if your foot is not properly attended to afterwards at home. 


Here’s all you need to know about ingrown toenails




The first thing that you will likely notice is that your toe is very sore and tender to the touch. There may even be redness around the area where the toenail is growing into the skin. If it’s not treated it could possibly become infected and pus may come out of the area.




While incorrectly cutting your toenails is often the culprit, things like wearing shoes that crowd your toenails can do it. The shape and length of your toenails can also play a part - some are just curved and that can cause an ingrown toenail. Even something that may seem relatively harmless, like stubbing your toe, can lead to the toenail growing inward. 




There are ways that you can deal with this at home, including soaking your feet and then lifting the nail and putting a piece of dental floss or cotton under it. Put antibiotic ointment on it and bandage it. Pain relievers like Tylenol may help. This is only for irritated areas, not infected ones. If there’s pus, see a podiatrist immediately. Other options may involve getting part or all of the nail removed, depending on how bad it is. 


Once the issue is fixed, you need to remember to trim your toenails straight across. Don’t curve the nail. The same goes for if you visit nail salons - the person doing it should cut across. Also, don’t let them grow too long… but don’t keep them too short, since that might also cause the nail to grow into the skin. 


It’s important to wear shoes that fit properly and also protect your feet. Consider wearing steel-toed shoes if you work at a job that puts your feet at risk. You only get two feet. Guard them. 


Diabetes and Ingrown Toenails


The reason why ingrown toenails can be especially dangerous for diabetics that there’s usually already a lack of blood flow in the foot area and that can lead to difficulty in healing if the toe becomes infected. Add the fact that patients often may be unaware that there’s even an issue down there because they lose feeling in that area and it can be a dire situation that may even wind up resulting in amputation. It’s important that diabetics check their feet daily for any cuts, blisters or ingrown toenails. If anything is found, they need to see a medical professional as soon as possible.


Ingrown toenails can be an aggravation for many people, with three million annual cases. But all it takes is some sense and care when it is treated and everything can resolve within a few months. Be diligent, though, and pay attention to the shoes that you wear and the way that you cut your toenails. If you are worried about that last part, you can even ask your podiatrist to do it during an exam. They do this all the time, and it’s not anything to be embarrassed about.


When it comes to ingrown toenails, Dr. John J Hickey has seen a good amount of them over the course of his career. If you live in the Levittown area, he can help ensure that your situation gets under control. He will also show you the best way to cut your toenails so that it doesn’t happen again. Give him a call to make an appointment: 516-735-4545.


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Levittown Podiatry

2870 Hempstead Tpke, Suite 103,

Levittown, New York 11756

Phone: (516) 735-4545