Onychocryptosis is an ingrown fingernail infection that may or may not cause pain. At several instances, Onychocryptosis is considered synonymous to an ingrown fingernail. This infection generally happens on the toe nails. This infection happens when the edge of the nail grows into the skin causing the skin to tear. While this condition may not always be associated with pain, it causes swelling, redness and inflammation of the infected area.
There might be several reasons that causes Onychocryptosis, the most prominent one being usage of wrong footwear. Some people often compromise their comfort for a stylish looking shoe even if it is slightly tight for them. This, they assume, gives their feet a better grip. Although, tight shoes nay give a proper grip and support to the feet, they leave less room for the feet. Also, tight shoes cause the feet to sweat more and this may attract bacteria. This bacterium gives rise to the infection of Onychocryptosis. Too loose shoes also cause the bacteria to grow and multiply causing the infection. A poorly trimmed nail is another major cause of the infection.
In certain cases, Onychocryptosis can be a very painful experience. The intensity of the pain depends on the extent of the infection, the age, the gender and the overall health of the person in question. It has been observed that people who smoke experience more pain during this infection than those who don’t. Diabetic patients have to be extra careful as such infections often take longer time to heal and may even cause a disability or loss of finger.
There are several ways to avoid this infection. Trimming the nails regularly, keeping feet clean and dry and wearing the right sized shoes will all help in preventing Onychocryptosis. To avoid the pain while cutting the ingrown fingernails, it is suggested to soak the nails in warm water, baking soda or Epson salt for a while before trimming them. This will make the nails soft and also kill any germs that may have developed. Also, rounding off the edges of the nails is a better option than leaving them straight.
Onychocryptosis should be taken seriously in people with delicate medical conditions. People with diabetes having this infection should be attended urgently as this infection may have serious repercussions. It is easier to prevent Onychocryptosis rather than treating it. Maintaining a regular nail care routine will prevent this infection and the occurrence of an ingrown fingernail.