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Ingrown toenails on a woman's foot, isolated on white background, pain in the big toe clos

Ingrown Toenails

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What is an ingrown toenail?

An ingrown toenail, also known as onychocryptosis, is a common condition where the edge or corner of a toenail grows into the surrounding skin. This can cause pain, swelling, redness, and sometimes infection. Ingrown toenails typically affect the big toe, but they can occur on any toe.

What causes the nail to ingrow?

They are often caused by improper nail trimming, tight footwear, injury to the toe, or genetic predisposition.  More often than not they occur in active teenagers due to the softness of their skin, their biomechanics, self-care and activity levels. 

What can happen if left untreated?

If left untreated, ingrown toenails can lead to infection, chronic pain and the build up of a reactive tissue called hypergranulation tissue.  Over time this tissue will often become organised scar tissue which needs to be surgically removed.

How is an ingrown toenail treated?

Treatment typically starts with conservative care, and advice on how to keep the area clean, how to dress it etc.  If further treatment is needed to resolve the issue,we can apply a small brace to the nail, or where hypergranulation tissue has been created, or in severe or chronic cases we offer nail surgery to remove the offending section of nail.

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