Updated: Jul 30, 2020
There’s a saying that goes, “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” It sums up the idea that once something happens to you, you should be able to avoid falling into the same trap in the future. When it comes to pranks and preventable health conditions, this certainly has a measure of truth! Some foot health problems, like ingrown toenails, can come back after they’ve been eliminated. There’s no need for you to have to suffer the pain again, however. You can take steps to keep an ingrown nail from coming back.
An ingrown nail develops when one corner or side of your toenail curls into or under the skin of your toe. Many outside factors can actually influence this and make it more likely. Once you’ve eliminated the ingrown edge, you need to invest in preventative measures to help stop the problem from returning in the future.
Here are a few basic preventative measures for your feet:
Cut your nails properly – Clip your toenails straight across. This should leave the sides and corners intact. Don’t clip the keratin too short, either.
Don’t pick at your toes – Picking at or tearing your toenails could pull off the ends of the keratin and leave ragged edges in place, making it far more prone to ingrowing.
Wear footwear that won’t squeeze your toes – Tight, short, or narrow shoes and too-tight socks can put pressure on your nails. Instead, wear looser socks and shoe styles that have plenty of room in the toe box for your foot.
Choose protective footwear – If you work in a job that makes it more likely that you’ll drop something heavy on your lower limbs, wear protective shoes that will withstand heavy objects without crushing your digits.
All the same, keep an eye on your feet to make sure you catch any nail changes before they have time to deteriorate into something worse. If you continually develop ingrown toenails, you might need a more permanent solution. Our team at Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC will work with you to prevent problems in your toes from recurring—and help you manage them if they do. Don’t wait to prevent your next ingrown nail. Make an appointment at our Metairie, LA, office today. You can reach us online or by calling (504) 708-4810.