2 Major Causes of Toenail Problems


Toenail problems can take a while to develop, so it’s easy to ignore the initial symptoms. By regularly inspecting your toenails whenever you cut or polish them you can notice signs of trouble before they get out of control. For example, thickening and yellowing of the toenails often indicates a fungal toenail infection. If you are experiencing pain, redness, and swelling at the edge of a toenail this could indicate the start of an ingrown toenail.

The 2 primary causes of toenail problems:

  1. Fungal toenails—Toenail fungus is the same fungus that causes athlete’s foot infection. Since fungi grow rapidly in the dark, moist environment inside your footwear it’s just a short jump to your toenails and when the fungi find their way underneath your toenails They can be hard to eradicate. Topical and oral antifungal medications can be used to attack the fungi. In severe cases, the entire nail may need to be surgically removed to effectively fight the infection.

  2. Ingrown toenails—Taking care to cut your toenails properly will prevent ingrown toenails from getting started. Always cut them straight across or only on a slight curve so that the edge of the nail can’t easily grow under the tender skin. Shoes like high heels push your toes together and increase the likelihood of developing toenail problems so they should be worn minimally or avoided altogether.

If you need help with toenail problems, see your podiatrist for the proper treatment. At E.J. Nemet Podiatry in Twinsburg,  E.J. Nemet, DPM, treats a variety of foot and ankle conditions, including sports injuries, pediatric foot problems, diabetic foot complications, nerve disorders, and toenail and skin conditions. With advanced technologies and a dedicated staff, Dr. Nemet provides expert and compassionate care to patients in the Twinsburg and Beachwood areas. To contact us or to schedule an appointment, please call (234) 212-9940.