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What are ingrown toenails?
Ingrown nails, the most common nail impairment, are nails whose corners or sides dig painfully into the soft tissue of nail grooves, often leading to irritation, redness, and swelling. Usually, toenails grow straight out. Sometimes, however, one or both corners or sides curve and grow into the flesh. The big toe is the most common location for this condition, but other toes can also become affected.
What are the causes?
Ingrown toenails may be caused by improperly trimmed nails, shoe pressure or crowding of toes, or repeated trauma to the toes from normal activities.
What are the symptoms?
Pain, redness and swelling, drainage, odor, prominent skin tissue (proud flesh).
When should you visit a podiatrist?
You should see a podiatrist immediately if any drainage or excessive redness is present around the toenail. Also, if a short trial of home treatment has not resulted in improvement of the condition, see your podiatrist. If you have diabetes or poor circulation, you should seek immediate treatment at the first signs of an ingrown toenail, as it can lead to more severe complications.
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