Toenails ~ When to get Professional Help

It can be difficult to know when it’s time to turn to a professional for help with your toenails.  But getting the right help at the right time ensures the optimum health for you and your toenails. 

Common Problems with Toenails

Toenail Thickness:

Sometimes nail thickness is the unavoidable result of the aging process. However, it is often an indication of a fungal infection in the toenails. The infection will not go away on its own and, if left untreated, may act as a reservoir for athlete’s foot. Lab testing performed by a professional can verify the presence or absence of treatable fungal infection.

Color Changes of Toenails:

The nails may change colors for numerous reasons. Fungal infection is one of the most common causes, but other reasons for discoloration can include trauma-induced blood, changes from systemic diseases, or a potentially life-threatening melanoma.  If you have a nail that is discolored for no known reason or isn’t improving, it’s time to get some help. A podiatrist can perform examination and testing to determine the underlying cause.

Melanoma of the toenail root

Ingrown Toenails:

If you have pain and swelling along a nail edge, you probably have an ingrown toenail. They are commonly caused by an abnormal nail shape, trauma, improper cutting, or tight shoe wear.  If not treated appropriately, infection of the skin and surrounding tissue can result. Sometimes the pain can be relieved by changing the way the nail is cut, wearing wider shoes, or simply giving it time.  But if not, a podiatrist can perform a simple in-office procedure to change the shape of the nail and provide permanent relief.

Health Problems that Complicate Toenail Care

PAD:

Peripheral arterial disease (compromised blood flow to the extremities) is becoming more understood. But what you may not know is that PAD also increases the risk associated with toenail care. People with PAD are less able to heal wounds on their feet. A small nick in the skin can turn into a big problem. The risk for injury can be reduced by having your toenails cared for by a professional.

Immune Suppression:  

Sometimes disease causes immune suppression. Other times it is the result of medications such as chemotherapy agents used to treat cancer. You may have been advised against a pedicure because of the risk of infection. Now you can safely enjoy a pedicure with our MediPedi service where all instruments are autoclaved or disposable/ single-use.  

Get started today!

If you have health problems that put you at risk, nail problems that haven’t resolved with simple home remedies, or if you have a concern about the color or shape of your nail, get an appointment today. Give us a call at 402-423-0762.