Toenail problems are one of the most common causes of pain and discomfort for your feet, but this does not have to be the case! You can ward off potential problems with your toenails by taking the time to give them a complete looking over every time you cut them or apply or remove nail polish.
Be on the lookout for things like thickening and yellowing of the nails which may be the signs of fungal toenail infection. Or if you are experiencing oozing, redness, pain and swelling near the edge of the toenail you may have an ingrown nail issue.
These are the two major causes of toenail problems that can be avoided with some common sense steps:
- Fungal toenails—A smelly and unsightly fungal toenail infection is caused by the same microbes that cause athlete’s foot fungal infections. These fungi thrive in the dark, moist environment that is inside many shoes, and when the fungi get up under the toenail they have a wonderful home from which it can be very hard to evict them. The use of topical and internal antifungal ointments and medications can kill many of the little critters and laser fungal nail treatment is also available for tough problems. Protecting your feet in public areas can help avoid contact with the microbes.
- Ingrown toenails—One of the most important ways to avoid an ingrown toenail is through correct toenail cutting technique. Always cut your toenails as straight across as possible and a little on the long side so that the edge of the nail can’t easily get underneath the tender skin at the edge of your toe. Tight fitting shoes like high heels should also be avoided since they push the toes together and press on the toenails.
If you are experiencing toenail problems, see your podiatrist for the best care. At Family Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Stephen Markantone treats a wide variety of foot and ankle conditions including sports injuries, diabetic foot issues, pediatric foot conditions, toe and foot deformities, fungal infections, and heel problems. Equipped with the most advanced technologies and a dedicated staff, Family Foot & Ankle Clinic provides individualized and high quality care for patients in the North Versailles and Delmont, PA areas. Contact our North Versailles office at 412-824-9370 or our Delmont office at 724-733-3338 to schedule an appointment.