Although they can happen to people of all ages, our office sees a lot of kids with ingrown toenails, which is what happens when a nail curves too much and begins digging into the soft skin around the side of the nail. Not only is the condition painful, but if untreated it can often lead to infection, and thus become much more medically serious.
Kids can get an ingrown toenail for a variety of reasons. Their feet grow fast, so their shoes might be too tight, and since they’re such balls of energy they’re more likely to bang or stub their toes. Ingrown toenails can also be the result of unfortunate genetics, so if that’s the case they could show up early in your child for seemingly no reason at all.
Parents are understandably concerned when they see a child in pain, and visiting a doctor’s office can be scary for little ones. The good news is that getting an ingrown toenail fixed doesn’t have to be painful or scary for your child! Even in cases where a minor surgical procedure is required (which is not always the case), it is quick, usually painless, and your child will almost certainly be back to giddily bouncing off the walls by the next day.
In the procedure, we use a local anesthetic to numb the toe, then remove a small slice of the nail—the part digging into the skin. If we think it’s necessary, we can also remove that portion of the nail root, which prevents that sliver of nail from ever growing back. This provides both a permanent solution to the problem and will still look quite natural, since only a small slice of nail edge will be missing.
Kids usually experience very little, if any, pain due to the procedure, and the bandage is light. The operation takes place right in our office—no hospital visit—and your child can go home right away and resume normal activities the very next day. They get to feel good about themselves, and you get to tell them how brave they were!If your little one has a painful ingrown toenail, the best decision you can make is bringing them to Advanced Foot & Ankle Specialists. We’ll quickly determine the source of the problem, the best way to fix it, and get you and your child out the door with as little fuss and stress—and as much gentleness and compassion—as possible. To schedule an appointment with us in Gilbert or Chandler, AZ, please call (480) 963-9000 today.