Children are prone to ingrown toenails just as adults are. A child as young as three years old can get an ingrown nail. The number one cause of this condition isn’t improper cutting of the nail but rather genetics.

If a child complains of pain around a nail without an injury, it’s a safe bet one of the corners of the nail is ingrown. Redness of the area and even drainage can be present. An attempt at self-treatment often can make the condition worse. There aren’t any store-bought products that will help either.

Since most primary doctors and urgent care clinics have limited experience treating this condition, a trip to the podiatrist is the best option. Removing the part of the nail that is ingrown under local anesthesia will result in immediate relief. Usually a procedure that can help prevent the problem from recurring is recommended.

Some kids will hide a painful ingrown toenail for weeks because of the fear of what might need to be done. This is especially true if the toe becomes red and starts oozing. Once a child reaches the teenage years it’s recommended that parents ask about any foot concerns. Feet are easily neglected.

Ingrown toenails can be very painful and become seriously infected. Addressing the condition as early as possible will relieve the pain and avoid anything serious from happening.

If a child’s Pediatrician prescribes an antibiotic for an infected toenail the relief will usually be temporary. Once a nail starts growing downward into the flesh a minor procedure is indicated to remove the offending piece. The goal is to prevent the piece of nail from ever growing inward again.

An ingrown toenail that is painful, red, and oozing can lead to an avoidable bone infection if not addressed early enough. We take every sign of infection seriously knowing something worse could happen if left untreated too long. Soaking the foot in Epsom salt and warm water and using a topical antibiotic cream such as Neosporin can help minimize a toenail infection before it’s professionally addressed.


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