Nails are a thickened extension of the skin’s top layer and are constructed of keratin, a very durable protein. The nail grows out from an area called the matrix which lies below the skin and is connected with blood vessels and the nail bed beneath which is full of nerve endings. Toenails are subjected to more stress than fingernails because of the shoes we wear and the presence of fungi and bacteria inside the shoe in addition to being more prone to damage from an impact. These factors combine to make it common for most people to deal with some type of toenail problem at some point in their lives such as:
Trauma to the nail matrix can cause in an array of possible changes to the nail itself. Injury to the toenail can be repetitive and chronic such as friction caused by rubbing against a shoe when the person runs or walks. The injury can also be acute such as receiving an impact from a dropped item or the act of stubbing the toe. The nail matrix can bruise or bleed because of these traumas and the toenail can become thick or even fall off. If any part of the toenail has come loose, it can cause the person to develop a fungal or bacterial infection. If the impact was especially great, it can fracture the toe bone.
You should go to the doctor if:
If you are concerns about any type of toe problem, it is best to come into the office and speak to a doctor.