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Parents can help prevent a common and painful foot problem in children by following a few simple tips.   

Podiatrists agree that ingrown toenails are a common condition they treat in children. The culprits are tight shoes, tight socks and incorrect nail trimming for most cases. In other cases, children may inherit the tendency for nails to curve.

This condition can cause significant pain, and over time, the nail may break the skin and lead to dangerous infections. Podiatrist give these recommendations to help parents prevent ingrown toenails in their children.

Tip #1

Trim toenails in a fairly straight line, and do not cut them too short. When children are old enough to trim their own toenails, teach them how to do so properly.

Tip #2

Make sure children’s shoes and socks fit. Shoe width is more important than length. Make sure that the widest part of the shoe matches the widest part of your child’s foot. Try on shoes for size in socks and at evening hours, when feet size increases due to day’s salt and sugar consumption, and thus, fluid retention.

Tip #3

If a child develops a painful ingrown toenail, parents can reduce the inflammation by soaking the child’s foot in a warm foot bath with unscented Epsom salt. Mix 1-2 tablespoons of unscented Epsom salts into one quart of warm water and soak your foot for 15 minutes at a time. Do this several times a day for the first few days. Always dry your foot completely after soaking. Soaking your ingrown or infected toe will help relieve the pain and pressure of an infection. It can also help to draw out pus from your toe.

Tip #4

The only proper way to treat a child’s ingrown toenail is with a minor surgical procedure at a podiatrist’s office. Parents should never try to dig the nail out or cut it off. These dangerous at-home procedures carry a high risk of infection.  A podiatrist may prescribe antibiotics to children with infected ingrown toenails.

If you or your child  are suffering from ingrown toenails, please contact our office.

Dr. Zinoviy Rabinovich D.P.M., Board Certified Physician and Surgeon of Foot and Ankle.  Experience, expertise, convenience of scheduling, evening hours, and a personal innovative approach for all your and your children’s foot care needs. Northbrook 847-297-9660, Crest Hill 815-838-9505 or book online at

 Доктор Зиновий Рабинович – board certified врач и хирург стопы и голеностопного сустава. Опыт, экспертиза, удобство записи, и индивидуальный, заботливый, инновационный подход для вас и ваших детей. Northbrook 847-297-9660, Crest Hill 815-838-9505. 

 Лікар Зіновій Рабинович – board certified лікар і хірург стопи і гомілковостопного суглоба. Досвід, експертиза, зручність запису, і індивідуальний, турботливий, інноваційний підхід для вас і ваших дітей. Northbrook 847-297-9660, Crest Hill 815-838-9505.

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