Ingrown nails can happen to anyone unfortunately. They may be caused by ill-fitting footwear, trauma, or even genetics, which may predispose one to develop ingrown toenails. An ingrown toenail can lead to recurrent pain and infection. Whilst there is a high success rate with surgical management of ingrown toenails, not all ingrown toenails require surgery. There are effective, painless conservative management options for those with a fear of needles or would prefer a non-surgical option.
Nail braces, similar to dental braces, are medical devices which use tension to correct nail growth. Nail braces are typically applied to your nail at its widest part. As the nail grows, the brace will help shape your nail into its natural position. As nails typically take 6-9 months for full growth, the whole bracing process will take several months to complete. Often, many patients report pain relief within the first 1-2 weeks of application of the nail brace.
Benefits of Nail Bracing
- Rapid pain alleviation
- Particularly suitable for those with diabetes
- Suitable for elderly or anyone with vascular disease
- Effective without requiring to exert force on the nail
- Customised to individual nail size and shape
- No down time
- No restriction on daily activities
- Nail polish can still be used
- No surgery required
- Allows for wearing of existing shoes
At Physio and Sole Clinic, we have 2 types of nail braces, which are Onyfix and Curvecorrect. They are suitable for children, adults and high-risk patients. The application for Onyfix and Curvecorrect is quick and simple, as opposed to other nail braces that may require tightening of wires to the nail and can be tedious to apply.
The Onyfix nail correction system is a new and innovative product. It involves applying a hardened composite material on the widest part of the nail, followed by curing the composite with a LED light. This acts like a brace on a nail plate and ensures that the nail retains the correct shape as it grows from the base of the nail, thus reshaping the pathway for the new nail growth.
With Onyfix, the composite is cured to your toenail for 2-3 months, which stays on longer than most other methods of nail braces. Repeat application may be required until the new nail grows out fully and healthily. Onyfix is an effective treatment modality for ingrown nails, pincer nails and split nails.
Curvecorrect uses a thin, reinforced composite strip that is fastened to the surface of the nail, it acts like a spring, gently straightening and lifting each side of the nail. CurveCorrect requires monthly applications over a period of 6-9 months for complete treatment.
Eventually, once the nail bracing treatment is complete for either Onyfix or Curvecorrect, the composite strip is removed and the nail will continue to maintain its shape and grow naturally without causing ingrowing.
Feel free to consult our friendly podiatrists if you are interested in nail bracing for treating your ingrown toenail!