Sports Focus Podiatry
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Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails are commonly caused by ill-fitting shoes. Where the shoe presses against the nail, the nail border grows into the surrounding nail groove which treats it like a foreign body and tries to reject it. Frequently the nail will grow extra callous tissue to protect it from the protruding nail point. If the nail pierces the skin, infection may follow.

Poor cutting of the nail is also a common cause of an ingrown toe-nail developing. The natural shape of the nail plays a role - a nail that is more curved from side to side rather than being flat is more likely to become an ingrown nail. Poor cutting of these types of nails can leave a sharp corner that puts pressure on and can penetrate the skin.

Previous trauma to a nail may alter the shape of the nail, making it more prone to becoming an ingrown nail. People often try to cut their own ingrown toenails! In doing so, it is easy to trim too far down the sides of the nail and this can just make the problem worse as the nail grows back. Always consult your podiatrist!

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