Ingrown Toenail

Neuhaus Foot & Ankle

Podiatry located in Smyrna, TN

Ingrown toenails can be extremely painful and may cause infection, especially if you try to treat them yourself. Get proper care from the expert podiatrists at Neuhaus Foot & Ankle who have more than 50 years of combined experience with ingrown toenails. With locations in Hermitage, Brentwood, Nashville, Mount Juliet, Waverly, Smyrna, and Lebanon, Tennessee, you can get relief quickly and conveniently. Call or schedule an appointment online today to get treatment for your ingrown toenail.

Ingrown Toenail Q & A

What causes ingrown toenails?

Ingrown toenails typically occur when you cut your nail too short – especially on the sides – and the new growth of your nail pushes into your skin. This can cause pain, swelling, redness, and potentially an infection.

Wearing tight shoes or shoes that are too short can also cause ingrown toenails. Ingrown toenails are especially common in teenagers as they are learning to groom themselves – sometimes incorrectly.

Your doctor can teach you how to cut your nails in order to avoid ingrown toenails. It is also important to avoid cutting your cuticles. Instead, you should push your cuticles back with an orange stick or hindu stone.

How are ingrown toenails treated?

Treatment will depend on the severity of your ingrown toenail. Your doctor at Neuhaus Foot & Ankle may recommend a conservative approach to relieve discomfort until the condition resolves on its own. Conservative treatment may include:  

  • Soaking your foot in warm water three or four times daily
  • Keeping your foot dry after warm water soaks
  • Wearing comfortable shoes or sandals
  • Taking ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain relief
  • Placing a splint under the nail to make it grow away from the skin

If you don’t get relief within two or three days, call Neuhaus Foot & Ankle. Your doctor may notice signs of an infection or a need to remove the piece of nail that is causing your symptoms. If an infection is present, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics.

For nails that need to be removed, your doctor offers options based on your situation. Surgical treatments include removal of a portion of the nail, a portion of the underlying nail bed, surrounding soft tissues, and even part of the growth center as needed.

If you have chronic problems with ingrown toenails, your doctor may recommend a matrixectomy, which can prevent future ingrown toenails.

What is a matrixectomy?

A matrixectomy is a surgical solution to chronic ingrown toenails that can prevent future ingrown nail problems. During the procedure, your doctor injects your toe with local anesthesia and applies a compression band around your toe to reduce bleeding.

Your doctor then removes the embedded piece of nail from the surrounding soft tissue. Next, they apply a phenol solution to the nail matrix using a cotton swab. This prevents bleeding in the underlying nail bed. Finally, your doctor dresses the surgical site in gauze and provides you with after-care instructions.

Get help for your ingrown toenail with a visit to Neuhaus Foot & Ankle. Call or click to schedule an appointment online now.