If the kids are home over holiday break, you’ve probably got your hands full! Racing around, playing, jumping, eating, and making messes are pretty much par for the course when it comes to kids, and enough to drive any parent to exhaustion. However, if one of your children is complaining of toe pain, that’s something you shouldn’t tune out. Ingrown toenails don’t just happen to adults – toes of all sizes are at risk, which means kids can get them too!
This painful condition occurs when the toenail grows into the surrounding skin instead of over top of it. This can cause redness, swelling, and pain. If you notice these symptoms early on, here’s what you can do at home:
First – and this is the hardest part – you need to get your child to sit still long enough so you can soak his or her foot in warm salt water a couple of times a day. After soaking, gently lift the intruding corner of the nail, placing a clean piece of cotton beneath it. Apply antibacterial ointment to avoid infection, and make sure your son or daughter wears open-toed shoes so no pressure is placed upon the toe. If this proves to be too difficult, or there are signs of infection (such as discharge or odor), make an appointment at North Austin Foot and Ankle. We will treat the problem nail by using a local anesthetic to lift or partially remove it. In severe cases, the nail may need to be fully removed, but this can typically be prevented by catching the problem early.
To avoid kids getting ingrown toenails all together, make sure you keep up with your child’s quickly growing feet so shoes are never too tight. If your little one stubs or injures a toe, keep a close eye on it and watch for symptoms. Finally, when it’s trimming time, always clip your child’s toenails straight across – no rounding at the corners – and be careful not to go too short. Nails should be even with the tips of toes.
If you have any questions or wish to schedule an appointment at either our Round Rock or Cedar Park, TX office, just call (512) 593-2949 and we’ll be happy to assist you.
Good luck getting through your holiday break with your sanity intact – remember, we’re here if you need us (at least for your family’s foot care)!