Ingrown toenails occur over time. When we are born, everything is growing in great. When our pediatrician tells us to cut the nails straight, we cut the nails straight. Over time we say, “What happened? How did I get this ingrown toenail?” Basically what happens is that the years go by, the mileage piles up on the feet, and the nail changes the way that it grows back at the matrix (those are the cells that make the nail). They end up turning. When they end up turning, you end up having this painful nail growing into the side of your skin, which can lead to an infection, as well, if it remains untreated.
Basically, in order to relieve the pain, you have to have a procedure done. Some of the ingrown toenails are mild; some might be a little more moderate, and even the severe ones needs a more aggressive procedure — all of which can be done in our office. Typically, you do not have to remove the entire toenail, just the portion of the nail (approximately 15-20 percent of the nail) that is ingrown. The procedure is done under anesthesia. The anesthesia is a local anesthesia, just to that toe. The procedure will not hurt; you will just feel a little pressure there but no pain.