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How to Properly Cut Your Toenails and Avoid Ingrown Toenails

Monday, 06 November 2017 00:00

While it may seem obvious how to clip your toenails, many people clip them the wrong way. Clipping your toenails improperly can cause the nail to become ingrown. While generally not serious, it can cause pain and discomfort. If you are a diabetic, an ingrown toenail can be a serious health risk, and it is advised to see a podiatrist if you have one. To help prevent ingrown toenails, cut them straight across and not as a rounded edge. Furthermore, do not clip them too short as this can also increase the risk of an ingrown toenail. Lastly, wearing shoes that don’t press against your toenails can help prevent the nail from becoming compressed and ingrown.

Ingrown toenails can become painful if they are not treated properly. For more information about ingrown toenails, contact Dr. Steven Schwartz of Pennsylvania. Our doctor can provide the care you need to keep you pain-free and on your feet.

Ingrown Toenails

Ingrown toenails occur when a toenail grows sideways into the bed of the nail, causing pain, swelling, and possibly infection.


  • Bacterial infections
  • Improper nail cutting such as cutting it too short or not straight across
  • Trauma to the toe, such as stubbing, which causes the nail to grow back irregularly
  • Ill-fitting shoes that bunch the toes too close together
  • Genetic predisposition


Because ingrown toenails are not something found outside of shoe-wearing cultures, going barefoot as often as possible will decrease the likeliness of developing ingrown toenails. Wearing proper fitting shoes and using proper cutting techniques will also help decrease your risk of developing ingrown toenails.


Ingrown toenails are a very treatable foot condition. In minor cases, soaking the affected area in salt or antibacterial soaps will not only help with the ingrown nail itself, but also help prevent any infections from occurring. In more severe cases, surgery is an option. In either case, speaking to your podiatrist about this condition will help you get a better understanding of specific treatment options that are right for you.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact our offices located in Chambersburg and Waynesboro, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

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