Ingrown toenails are caused by the growth of the nail into the side of the toe. When ingrown toenails are able to develop past their initial stages, they become very painful and irritated. The best way to avoid this progression of an ingrown toenail is to know the stages of the condition’s development. With this knowledge, you can avoid the most uncomfortable stages of an ingrown by catching the condition early.

Ingrown toenails are usually caused by increased pressure on the toes from the shoes, which usually happens when shoes are too tight. The first indication of an ingrown toenail is pain at the side of the nail, where it meets the skin of the toe. When pain starts in this area, it is usually because the nail has begun to grow into the skin. Once pain starts in this area, you can expect progression of an ingrown toenail to continue with classic signs of infection: swelling, redness, and fluid build-up around the nail. 

After this initial inflammatory response, the next stage in ingrown progression is an increase of pain, swelling and fluid release. This happens as the ingrown is left untreated and is continually pressured from the shoe around it. When ingrowns continue to develop past their initial stages, they often become infected. Once an infection has formed in the ingrown toenail, you will likely start to notice increased swelling and pus formation in the toe. Once an ingrown toenail has become infected, you must seek out a podiatrist immediately to get treatment for the ingrown. A podiatrist will be able to diagnose the ingrown toenail and provide effective treatment for the condition. Ideally, a podiatrist’s opinion should be sought after at the first sign of an ingrown; if you wait til it has become infected, the condition will be harder to treat. To schedule a consultation with a podiatrist, give us a call at (424)-299-4627 or visit our website for more information.