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Ingrown Toenails

Steven Lemberger, DPM, DACFAS

Board Certified Podiatrist & Foot Surgeon located in Freehold, NJ

If you have sweaty feet or a chronic condition like diabetes, you’re more likely to experience ingrown toenails. At his private practice in Freehold, New Jersey, board-certified podiatrist Steven Lemberger, DPM, DACFAS, works with patients of all ages to diagnose and treat ingrown toenails using safe, minimally invasive methods. To schedule an appointment, call the office or book online today.

Ingrown Toenails Q & A

What are ingrown toenails?

Ingrown toenails are one of the most common foot-related health problems. They occur when your toenail grows into the soft skin surrounding the nail bed instead of up and out. Ingrown toenails can affect any of your toes, but they’re especially common on the big toe.

In most cases, rest and home treatments ease pain and swelling caused by ingrown toenails. If you have diabetes or poor circulation, though, seek professional help. These conditions increase your risk of infection and more serious health problems.

What are the symptoms of ingrown toenails?

Common symptoms associated with ingrown toenails include:

  • Toe pain
  • Toe tenderness
  • Redness around the affected toenail
  • Swelling 
  • Warmth

As the ingrown toenail gets worse, you might also notice signs of an infection, such as pus or the formation of an abscess.

Is there any way to prevent ingrown toenails?

There’s no way to prevent ingrown toenails entirely, but there are several things you can do to significantly lower your risk.

Dr. Lemberger recommends cutting your toenails straight across, wearing comfortable shoes that fit properly, keeping your toenails at a moderate length, and inspecting your feet regularly.

How are ingrown toenails diagnosed?

To diagnose an ingrown toenail, Dr. Lemberger physically examines your feet and toes, asks about your symptoms, and reviews your medical history. 

If he suspects you have an infection, he might also order an X-ray or MRI to get a closer look at your toe’s bones, joints, and surrounding soft tissue structures.

How are ingrown toenails treated?

Treatment of ingrown toenails depends on the severity of your symptoms and their effect on your quality of life. Dr. Lemberger might recommend:

Lifting the nail

If you have a mild ingrown toenail that causes redness and pain, you might benefit from lifting the nail. Dr. Lemberger carefully lifts your nail and places a splint under it. This separates your nail from your skin and helps the nail grow outward.

Partially removing the nail

If you have an ingrown nail that’s red, painful, or oozing pus, Dr. Lemberger might recommend partially removing the nail. Prior to treatment, he administers a local anesthetic to numb your toe. Once the anesthesia sets in, he trims or completely removes the ingrown portion of your affected nail.

Removing the nail and tissue

If you have a history of ingrown toenails and they don’t respond to traditional treatments, you might benefit from the complete removal of your nail and tissue. Dr. Lemberger can perform this type of treatment with chemicals or a medical laser.

Don’t let ingrown toenails negatively affect your quality of life. Schedule an appointment at the practice of Steven Lemberger, DPM, DACFAS, today. Call the office to speak with a friendly staff member or book a consultation online.