Ingrown toenails can happen to everybody; they form when the corner of the nail grows into the side of the skin. This is caused by excess pressure on the corner of the toe, which in a way pushes the toe onto the nail during growth. Although everybody is at risk for them, athletes are under a particularly high level of risk.
The reasons why it is more common for athletes to get ingrown toenails boils down to their increased level of activity. The pressure on the corner of the nails that causes ingrown toenails is increased with increased levels of activity. This is because the shoes are pressed against the toes more frequently and with more force. Sports usually require walking, running, jumping, or other activities that can increase the pressure on the toe.
Athletes are also prone to ingrown toenails because of the footwear they need to wear. When sneakers or athletic shoes are too tight, the wall of the shoe is very close to the toe. This makes it easier for the nail to start growing into the skin. The risk from tight footwear is increased when physical activity is part of a regular routine.
Additionally, athletes are often taught to work through the pain. While this may make sense for some things like soreness, pushing through ingrown toenail pain is a bad idea. This will only ever make the ingrown toenail worse, harder to treat, and increase recovery time. If you are an athlete with an ingrown toenail, it is very important that you get treated by a licensed podiatrist as soon as possible. This way, you can start the recovery process immediately and avoid an extended recovery period. To schedule your consultation with a podiatrist, give us a call at (424)-299-4627 or visit our website for more information.