Because of other conditions that tend to affect elderly people, geriatric ingrown toenails can have different causes and intricacies than they do for younger patients. While ingrown toenails can happen to anybody, there are certain reasons why elderly patients might be more susceptible to them. These differences stem from other health concerns that elderly people have, and reflect impacts on areas of health that older people should be aware of as much as possible. 

With age, it is common for health conditions to arise. Often, these conditions can accumulate and interact with each other to increase the risk for elderly patients. One common condition that can affect geriatric ingrown toenails is diabetes. Diabetes can reduce blood flow to the feet, making ingrown toenails more prone to infection. Infected ingrown toenails require more immediate attention, especially in geriatric patients who could be more severely impacted by an infection. Geriatric patients with diabetic peripheral neuropathy may also experience numbness of the toes, making it harder for them to notice when an ingrown toenail has formed.

Elderly patients may also have trouble cutting their own toenails for different reasons, including fear of injury from falling over, and loss of flexibility or postural stability. Arthritis can also make cutting your own toenails more difficult. Because of this, geriatric ingrown toenails are common because nail hygiene decreases. The best way to prevent an ingrown toenail is to keep the toenail properly trimmed at a moderate length and straight across instead of curved.

The best thing to do when an elderly person has an ingrown toenail is to be seen by a licensed podiatrist for a diagnosis and consultation. They will be able to provide safe treatment to effectively remove the ingrown toenail. To schedule your consultation with a podiatrist, give us a call at (424)-299-4627 or visit our website for more information.