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How to Fix An Ingrown Toenail

Monday, November 30th, 2020


How to fix an ingrown toenail

Is your toenail causing you a world of pain and irritation? Getting an ingrown toenail can be a daunting experience, to say the least.

Oddly enough, ingrown toenails are quite common, and that’s no surprise. It’s easy to cut your nails in an improper way and not even know it. Not to mention, a variety of other reasons why nails start to grow in.

In this article, we will cover how to fix an ingrown toenail, so that you can get back on your feet and walk for miles without pain. Starting with chiropodist Oxford treatment, and going as far as at-home nail maintenance.

So whenever you’re ready to mend your body and no longer fear your own step, keep reading.

Can a Chiropodist Oxford Remove a Toenail?

In most cases, the sequence of chiropodist Oxford treatment is similar within the realm of this industry, starting with moderate treatment first, but taking a more serious approach later on.

However, depending on the circumstance and condition of your ingrown toenail, drastic measures might be attempted first.

How to Get Rid of an Infected Ingrown Toenail?

For a slightly ingrown nail, which has pain and redness with no puss, your doctor might carefully live the edge of the nail, and place something under it, such as a splint, floss, or cotton.

This will separate the date from the skin and help it start growing over the skin edge. When you’re sent home, you will need to soak the toe daily and replace the material.

For a more serious condition, which does have pus, your doctor will remove or trim the ingrown part of the nail. Before this, they will numb the toe with an anesthetic.

If the problem continues to happen after removal, your doctor might suggest removing a greater part of your nail along the nail bed. This might prevent your nail from ever-growing back, but that’s not a certainty.

Your doctor will use a laser, chemical treatment, or some other method to remove the nail. They might also advise using oral and topical antibiotics, especially if there is a risk for infection.

Will an Ingrown Toenail Cause Numbness? How to Tell if a Toenail Is Infected?

To the first question, simply said, no. To the second question, you will be able to tell quite easily. If your skin is inflamed and has pus coming out of it, that’s a pretty good sign of infection.

However, there are some things to consider. If you suspect the nail will become ingrown, you can try to trim your nails straight without making them pointed or rounded.

You should also avoid cutting them too short, leave them just long enough so that the corners lie loosely against the skin. Use clippers that are designed for toenails.

Healthcare specialists do not advise people to cut their own ingrown nails. If the nail brings lots of pain and is getting worse, you should see a doctor as soon as possible.

Bathroom surgery should be avoided at all costs, this is because cutting the nail short or too often can make ingrowing even worse, thus increasing the risk of complications.

It’s also recommended that you fully avoid clipping or digging out an already ingrown toenail. An ingrown nail can easily pierce the skin, this makes it easy for bacteria to enter the body and cause an infection.

Attempting to cut the nail yourself will increase this risk even more, as it will damage the skin further, especially if the nail is already embedded in the tissue. Cutting the edge too shot will increase the risk of another toenail becoming ingrown.

Ingrown Toenail Care At-Home

If you do get an ingrown toenail, there are some things you can do to ensure your medical treatment goes even better. Furthermore, some of the advised things will help you alleviate the pain.

For instance, you can take over-the-counter medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help. You can also use a numbing spray or cream, even though this will not treat the infection, it will help reduce the pain.

You should definitely soak your feet in warm water regularly. Adding Epsom salt can help with the swelling and pain. In some cases, gentle massage around the area can improve blood flow, which might expedite healing.

After soaking your feet, always dry them well. Apply antibacterial cream to the area, to avoid a toenail infection. Wear loose-fitting shoes, even better if you can wear open-toe shoes.

Some people would advise placing dental floss or cotton under the toenail to reduce pressure, but this should be done by a doctor. Especially, because cotton can actually make things worse and increase the infection risk.

How to Prevent the Nail Getting Ingrown?

You should always make use of clippers that are created for toenails since they help accommodate the proper shape and have enough force to quickly trim.

You should also wash your clippers before and after each use. Using dirty tools will introduce bacteria and increase the risk of infection.

Do not cut your nails short. The nail should not be much shorter than the toe. Cutting your nails short will increase the risk of it growing unusually.

You should also cut the toenails in a straight fashion across. Pointed or rounded shapes will induce the possibility of ingrown toenails even more.

Don’t wear tight-fitting shoes. Shoes that are too tight will pinch your toes, making it hard for them to move. Pointed-toe shoes are even more conducive towards this.

Keep in mind that some people are more susceptible to ingrown toenails, either because of medical or genetic conditions. For instance, nerve damage and diabetes can cause serious problems, as well as slow healing.

People with a weaker immune system will be at greater risk of infection too. Repeatedly getting ingrown nails can be a symptom of a more serious health condition.

Ingrown Toenail Begone

Now that you know how to fix an ingrown toenail, you are well on your way to ensure your feet get taken care of. As long as you act soon and push through the fear of consequence, you will be recovering in no time.

If you’d like to schedule an appointment and get your toenail examined by a chiropodist Oxford, get in touch with us and we will happily accommodate your needs.

What’s the difference between a chiropodist and podiatrist?

Monday, September 30th, 2019

what’s the difference between a podiatrist and chiropodist

Offering chiropody services in Oxford means we often get asked the simple question, what’s the difference between a chiropodist and podiatrist?

This blog post looks at some of these common questions, including top tips on how to look after your feet.

What’s the difference between a chiropodist and podiatrist?

The answer is that there is no difference, the 2 words are used interchangeably to describe the same thing… Essentially both a chiropodist and podiatrist are a foot doctor which both look at foot problems and care for foot health.

Chiropody is an historic term which has been used throughout the centuries to describe someone that specialises in the health and well-being of your feet. According to the Institute of chiropody and podiatry, it wasn’t until more recent years that the professional title of Podiatrist was created to recognise the specialist qualifications of the profession.

What are the responsibilities of a chiropodist?

A chiropodist or podiatrist seeks to rectify a range of foot disorders, including but not limited to:

  • Callus (hard skin)
  • Corns
  • Dry cracked heels
  • In-growing toenails
  • Tough thickened nails
  • Verrucae

Difference between a podiatrist and a nail technician?

This is also a question that sometimes gets asked, a podiatrist has the professional medical qualification which enables them to register with the Institute of Chiropody and Podiatry, it also enables them to treat a wide variety of foot ailments.

A nail technician, on the other hand, is someone dedicated entirely to looking after the beauty of your nails, including shaping and colouring. Their skills do not extend to the surgical management of your nails nor to looking after any other of the common foot ailments.

How does podiatry differ from orthopedics?

A podiatrist deals solely with your feet whereas an orthopedic surgeon deals with skeletal problems around the whole body. Your registered podiatrists may work closely with an orthopedic surgeon should you have any skeletal problems with your feet which require surgical intervention.

How do podiatrists remove a callus?

Foot calluses and corns on your feet can be painful, however, you should be aware that if you have diabetes, heart problems or any other form of circulatory disorder you should not treat the corns calluses yourself and should seek specialist help from a podiatrist.

A podiatrist is likely to take one of the following courses of action to remove a callus:

  1. Designing specially made insoles are going to your shoes which can take the pressure off of the callus area.
  2. Applying patches to your skin to help soften the hard area to facilitate later removal.
  3. Gently cutting away and removing the corn or callus.

Is wearing shoes too often bad for your feet?

Wearing shoes per se is not necessarily bad for your feet, however wearing poorly fitting shoes CAN be. If you have probably fitting shoes then areas of the shoe can run on your feet causing calluses and corns. These can be painful and tricky to remove.

How to deal with foot pain?

bones of your feet

image credit: myhealth.alberta.ca

Foot pain can be incredibly complex due to the complex nature of the construction of your foot.

Your foot contains:

  • 26 bones
  • 33 joints, of which 20 of them are actively articulated
  • Over 100 muscles, ligaments and tendons

Pain in your foot can also be caused by problems further up your leg. Even problems with your hip or lower back can mean that you change the way you stand or walk which can be transferred down your leg and cause problems with the complex anatomy of your foot.

This is where a podiatrist really comes into their own, being able to understand exactly where the pain is in your foot and how it is caused and then knowing the best way to treat it.

Would wearing high heels everyday damage your feet?

Wearing high heels everyday can cause a whole range of problems. Because your weight is artificially shifted forward onto the balls of your feet…

  • your knees need to push forward to rebalance yourself
  • your hips have to push forward to maintain balance
  • you have to hyperextended your back pushing backwards to maintain balance
  • the ball of your foot which has some natural cushioning can begin to thin overtime, this soft pad can actually begin to atrophy

We therefore recommend not wearing high heels every day and ensuring you have well-fitting and balanced shoes.

Common sports injuries that affect your feet

There are a range of sports injuries which can affect your feet and require access to a podiatrist, some of these include:

  • Achilles tendinitis. The Achilles tendon is the largest tendon in the body and can often be affected by repetitive sports injuries such as dancing or running. Overuse of the Achilles tendon can result in degeneration, this can be exacerbated with age.
  • Neuroma. quite simply this is a pinched nerve in your foot. There can be a variety of causes including wearing the wrong shoes, trauma or congenital problems with the shape of your feet. Neuroma is experienced as either pain in the ball of your foot or tingling and numbness, particularly between the toes or big toe whilst walking and the nerve is being irritated. Treatments to reduce the inflammation of the nerve can include shoe inserts to provide more support or possibly corticosteroid injections.
  • Plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia is a band of tissue which stretches across the art of your foot and takes a lot of the stress when you walk. The typical site of pain is at the bottom of your heal.
  • Foot stress fractures. These can occur in people who participate in high contact or high-stress sports such as long-distance running, gymnastics, dance and football. The broken bone can be caused by a single intensive trauma all by repetitive stresses placed on feet and ankles. A lack of training and therefore building up of the support structures around a person’s foot and ankle can make someone more susceptible to stress fractures.

In summary, ensuring you train adequately before undertaking excessive exercise with sports and ensuring you wear correctly fitting footwear with good quality support is some of the best ways you can help to reduce your chances of having sports-related foot injuries.

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