The most common skin and nail problems in children
The health of our children's feet is so very important.
As parents, we all want the best for our children and see them grow into healthy, active adults.
In the clinic, we see many different common skin and nail conditions that present in children and teenagers so today we thought it might be useful to take a look at the most common
These are perhaps the most common of all nail conditions we see in children and teenagers.
An ingrown toenail occurs when a piece of the toenail digs into the skin on the side of the toe.
For any of us that have had an ingrown toenail before we know just how painful these can be. You can read more about ingrown toenails HERE.
This painful nail problem is often caused by incorrect cutting techniques, trauma or poorly fitting footwear and can become red, hot and infected very quickly if left untreated.
Management of this condition really depends on how bad the ingrown toenail is.
For many people, conservative nail care with one of our expertly trained Podiatrist can clear up the ingrown toenail very quickly.
For others, a special nail brace called Onyfix may need to be applied whereas, in situations where a significant infection is present, antibiotics and a minor in-clinic procedure may need to be performed.
If your child has their toenail squashed or has some minor injury to the nail, it is quite common for discolouration to the toenail to occur following a minor bleed under the toenail.
When this happens, the build-up of blood under the nail can create a lot of pressure which can be quite painful.
In some cases, the nail will just become loose and may fall off, however, in some situations where the toe is very painful, the blood and fluid under the nail may need to be drained or the nail removed under anaesthetic to relieve the pain.
A new nail will usually take about 12 months to grow back, however, following any nail trauma, the new nail may grow back thicker or with a slightly different shape than the original nail.
If your child's nail concerns you, it is best to seek advice from one of our Podiatrists for the best advice about how to take care of it.
Plantar Warts (Verruca)
A plantar wart, or verruca, is caused by a minor viral infection of the skin with the human papillomavirus.
It usually looks like a build-up of cauliflower-like skin and can present with or without black spots.
Treatment of plantar warts can be completed through various evidence-based treatment plans designed specifically for you by your podiatrist, and have much higher success rates than over the counter treatments.
At Complete Podiatry, we have invested in a state of the art treatment system for warts called Swift.
Tinea is a fungal infection of the skin on the foot that is very common amongst children and teenagers.
Tinea typically presents as a red and itchy skin rash but can present in other ways as well.
For more information on Tinea, read THIS article.
There are many creams that can help treat tinea but the best way to manage it is to make sure your children's feet are kept clean, dry and healthy
- changing socks daily
- washing and drying feet well each day
- wearing a different pair of shoes each day
- treat tinea early before it spreads to other family members.
Top 5 tips for maintaining healthy skin and nails in children
1. Wash and dry feet well every day
GRavity moves all the bugs on our body down to our feet when we shower.
To help prevent the risk of infections of any kinds, it is important to wash and dry feet daily, ensuring great hygiene.
2. Always cut toenails straight across the ends and never down the edges
To prevent ingrown toenails, we should always cut nails straight across, and never down the sides.
The easiest rule to follow is 'never try to cut what you can't see'.
3. Check shoe wear and sizing regularly
During certain times in their lives, children's feet can grow extremely fast.
Make surer your children wear good quality, well-fitting shoes to help prevent skin and nail problems as well as muscle, bone and joint injuries.
4. Talk to your kids about their feet like you would their teeth
It's not often we ask our kids or anyone for that matter, 'how are your feet?', however, it is very common for children to just ignore a problem until it causes them a lot of pain or problems.
Being open about all of your child's health concerns and having regular discussions can help prevent minor foot problems from developing into a bigger one.
5. When in doubt contact a Podiatrist for advice and investigation
If your child or teenager is presenting with any of the conditions mentioned or has any discomfort, don’t hesitate to book in an appointment for a full investigation and development of a personalised management plan.
We Are Here To Help
If you have noticed a problem with your child skin or nails, the first thing to do is book an appointment with one of the Podiatrists at Complete Podiatry for a comprehensive assessment to identify what is causing your child's problem.
Once this is done, we will develop a structured management plan that outlines our best advice for how to help them return to doing the things they love to do without needing to worry about their feet.
Just call us on 8330 0004 (add link tel:0883300004), I'll love to talk to you about how we can help you build an amazing life from the feet up!
Yours in helping to build amazing lives from the feet up.
Director of Complete Podiatry