Proper Toenail Care for Your Children

Every child has a favorite pair of shoes they will wear over anything. Have they ever worn that pair until they were too tight and squeezing their toes? Likely! Has this behavior increased the risk of ingrown toenails? Likely as well!

Properly fitting shoes are imperative to maintaining healthy and happy feet, especially during the main growth phases, but there are other factors to consider. Addressing these factors early on is key for prevention. We recommend parents adhere to the following actions:  

  • Trim the toenail straight across.
  • Do not cut the toenail too short.
  • Do not curve the nails or round off the nail.
  • Do not pick or tear the nail.
  • Avoid tight narrow shoes or poor fitting shoes.

We recommend regularly inspecting your child’s feet, especially when they begin trimming their own toenails. If your child experiences pain when walking, redness or anything resembling a blister near the toenail, we recommend considering medical attention. Depending on the severity of the case, your podiatrist may recommend potential home remedies to ease the pain:

  • Soaking their foot in warm soap water for 20 minutes, 2 to 3 times a day.
  • Gently rubbing around the swollen cuticle and angle the nail upwards while soaking.
  • Over-the-counter cream, gel or toe protectors.
  • Wearing open-toed shoes.
  • Place a thin piece of gauze around the toenail if closed toed shoes are required.

More severe cases may cause infections and require minor surgical procedures or medication. In any case, we want your child to rock their favorite pair of shoes at any time, so stock up with larger sizes whenever possible to guarantee that perfect fit!