You likely don't spend a lot of time thinking about your feet but an ingrown toenail can change that overnight. Ingrown toenails can be a real nuisance that distracts you throughout your workday or other endeavors. If you believe you have a toenail that has become ingrown, you'll want to see a podiatrist for assistance. But here are three tips to keep in mind so that appointment will never have to happen.
Careful When Clipping
When you trim your toenails or get a pedicure, it's common to want to curve your nail so that it matches the shape of your toe. But while your toes might look better in the short-term, this is a recipe for disaster in the long-term. Always trim your toenails evenly and straight across. Leave the cuticle portion alone, no matter what the ladies at the pedicure shop say. Always use a clipper designed for toenails and not a pair of scissors or a clipper that is designed for fingernails.
Keep It Comfortable
Whenever possible, stick with shoes with a little extra space. This can sometimes be difficult for women who like to wear high heels or shoes that push your toe inward. If you must wear uncomfortable shoes, try to limit the amount of time that you are in them. For example, wear comfortable shoes during the workday and only switch into your high heels when you go out for a drink in the evening. Also, try to ensure that the materials your shoes are made out of are breathable. Non-breathable synthetic materials can increase the chance of a problem due to irritation.
Know Your Feet
Everyone's foot mechanics are often a little bit different. Some people walk on the insides of their feet, some on the outside and some people have flat feet. If your feet are flat, your big toe is likely to move inward as you walk. If this description fits you, try to give your feet some extra space by avoiding thick socks or pantyhose.
Take proper care of your feet by trimming your toenails properly and wearing comfortable shoes and you should be able to avoid ingrown toenails. If one should pop up, gently clip the toenail, soak your feet and rub some antibiotic cream on the affected area if needed. If the problem persists, contact your main health care provider and get a referral to a podiatrist in your area who can help or visit a website like http://footfirstpodiatrycl.com.