Are you suffering from painful and unsightly ingrown toenails? You don’t have to live with them any longer. Ingrown surgery is a fast and effective way to eliminate your ingrown toenails.
This blog post will discuss the benefits of ingrown toenail surgery, the procedure itself, the recovery time, and what you can expect afterward. So if you’re ready to say goodbye to your ingrown toenail woes, keep reading!
Causes of Ingrown Toenails
Ingrown toenails occur when the edges of your toenail grow into the skin surrounding the nail. This is often caused by wearing tight-fitting shoes, improper nail trimming, or injury to the toe.
Genetics can also play a role in ingrown toenails, as some individuals may be predisposed to developing them. People with diabetes, poor circulation, and weak immune systems are at higher risk of developing ingrown toenails.
When to See a Doctor
See a doctor as soon as possible if you notice any signs of an ingrown toenail. These signs may include redness and swelling around the toenail, pain, and drainage of pus.
If left untreated, the condition can become worse and lead to infection. Seeking medical advice early can help to prevent any further complications.
The Surgery Procedure
Ingrown toenail surgery is designed to remove the entire ingrown portion of the nail. The surgery is usually done under local anesthesia, meaning that the foot and ankle area will be numb during the procedure.
The doctor will make an incision along the side of the affected toe, then cut through the nail matrix and surrounding skin. This allows them to remove the entire ingrown portion of the nail. Depending on the severity of the infection, they may also need to remove some of the nail beds to prevent the pin from growing back inwards.
Once the nail has been removed, your doctor may use surgical packing to help ensure that the area heals correctly. If an infection was present before surgery, they might also apply antibiotics to help reduce your risk of complications.
After the procedure, your doctor will wrap your toe in a bandage and recommend keeping your foot elevated for a few days to minimize swelling. You will likely experience some soreness and discomfort initially, but this should gradually improve.
It is essential to follow all post-operative instructions your doctor provides to help promote healing and reduce your risk of complications.
In the days after surgery, you may experience swelling, tenderness, and some bruising in the days after surgery. To reduce discomfort, it’s essential to keep your foot elevated whenever possible and use an ice pack on the affected area for 15 minutes throughout the day. Taking over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen can help with pain or inflammation.
Your doctor may also suggest wearing a bandage or dressing for a few days after the procedure to protect the wound from infection and further irritation. You should also keep your foot dry and clean to avoid infection and keep away from any strenuous activities that may put extra stress on your foot.
Once the wound has healed, you should see your doctor for a follow-up appointment. They will check that the injury is healing correctly and monitor any changes in the affected area. Depending on the severity of the ingrown toenail, your doctor may recommend wearing special shoes or inserts to provide extra protection during healing.
Overall, following these simple tips and keeping up with regular check-ups will ensure that your recovery is quick and complication-free.
Risks and Complications
When undergoing any kind of surgery, there is always a risk of potential complications or side effects. With ingrown toenail surgery, the risks can include infection, nerve damage, or the recurrence of the ingrown toenail. Pain and swelling in the toe are also possible. Talking to your doctor about any potential risks before going through with the surgery is essential.
Alternatives to Surgery
Although surgical removal is the most effective way to treat an ingrown toenail, there are some other treatment options available. If caught early enough, the discomfort and redness associated with ingrown toenails can be managed without surgical intervention.
This may include soaking the toe in warm water, wearing loose-fitting shoes, and taking pain relief medication. Your doctor may also suggest you apply a topical antibiotic cream and oral antibiotics.
In cases where the skin around the nail is very inflamed, your doctor may suggest using a soft cotton splint or foam wedge. The splint or wedge helps gently push the skin away from the nail edge to reduce pain and heal better.
Laser treatment may sometimes remove a portion of the nail to alleviate pain and pressure. Finally, you may be advised to trim the nails properly to prevent the reoccurrence of the condition. Cutting your nails straight across and filing them regularly will help to ensure proper nail growth.
No matter what treatment option you and your doctor decide on, it’s essential to follow their instructions and practice good foot hygiene. This will help to prevent ingrown toenails from happening again in the future.
Ingrown toenail surgery is a safe and effective way to eliminate the pain and discomfort of an ingrown toenail permanently. It can be done quickly and with minimal recovery time, allowing you to return to your daily activities sooner. While surgery may not be for everyone, it is worth considering if other treatments have not successfully relieved the symptoms of an ingrown toenail.