Ingrown toenails, a common foot problem, occur when the corner or edge of a nail grows into the surrounding skin. This can cause redness, swelling, pain, and even infection. While ingrown toenails can sometimes be treated at home, there are many reasons why you should see a podiatrist for professional care.

Signs and Symptoms of Ingrown Toenails

The most common signs and symptoms of ingrown toenails include:

  • Pain, redness, and swelling around the affected toenail
  • Tenderness to the touch
  • Pus or drainage from the nail fold
  • Difficulty walking or wearing shoes

Why See a Podiatrist?

There are several reasons why you should see a podiatrist for an ingrown toenail:

  • Proper Diagnosis and Treatment: A podiatrist can accurately diagnose the severity of the ingrown toenail and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan.
  • Safe and Effective Nail Trimming: Podiatrists have specialized tools and expertise to safely trim and shape the affected nail, reducing pressure and preventing further ingrowth.
  • Infection Management: If the ingrown toenail is infected, a podiatrist can prescribe antibiotics or other medications to clear the infection and prevent complications.
  • Preventative Measures: Podiatrists can provide guidance on proper nail care and footwear choices to prevent future ingrown toenails.

When to Seek Immediate Help

Certain situations require immediate attention from a podiatrist:

  • Severe pain, redness, and swelling
  • Drainage of pus or foul-smelling fluid from the nail fold
  • Symptoms of infection, such as fever or chills
  • Diabetes or other conditions that compromise immune function

Prevention Tips

To reduce the risk of ingrown toenails, follow these tips:

  • Trim your toenails straight across, avoiding cutting them too short.
  • Wear shoes that fit properly and provide adequate support.
  • Avoid wearing tight-fitting socks or stockings.
  • Keep your feet clean and dry.
  • If you notice any signs of an ingrown toenail, seek professional care promptly.


Ingrown toenails can be a painful and inconvenient problem, but with proper treatment from a podiatrist, they can be effectively managed and prevented from recurring. By following preventive tips and seeking professional attention early on, you can maintain healthy and comfortable feet. Remember, your podiatrist is your foot health expert and can provide personalized care to keep your feet happy and healthy.

Comments are disabled.