Running is great exercise, but it can take a toll on your body. Avid runners are prone to foot pain and injuries, with some regularly suffering toenail pain, discoloration, and worse.
Due to the mechanics of running, your toes hit the top of your shoe when you take each step. You might not notice it at first, but the microtrauma, repeated over and over during a long run, can lead to pain and toenail damage over time.
Microtrauma during a run can cause a blood blister, or hematoma, to develop under a toenail. The blood blister often appears blue or black, and it can feel like pulsing pain once your run is over. Some blood blisters force the nail to separate from your nail bed and eventually fall off.
At Wiregrass Podiatry, we offer the best in foot care, whether you regularly experience toenail pain or you’ve suffered a more severe sports injury. Our team includes Jennifer Decker, DPM, and Lincoln Lowe, DPM, both highly skilled and experienced podiatrists who offer compassionate care in Enterprise and Dothan, Alabama.
Toenails that fall off as a result of hard-core running grow back, but they might fall off again. To keep your toenails healthy and pain-free, read on to get the best tips and tricks for protecting your nails from damage when you love to run.
Find running shoes that fit well
Shoes that are too small can put extra pressure on your toes. But shoes that are too large can make your feet slide as you run, which also puts pressure on your toes as you step.
A good run often starts with a good pair of shoes. Strive to find running shoes that have enough room in the toe box but aren’t so large that your feet move around inside them. When your feet are in the right shoes, your toenails don’t suffer as much microtrauma when you run.
Once you find shoes that fit comfortably, take care to lace and tie them properly. Running shoes should be tied snugly to keep your feet secure and stop them from slipping inside the shoe as you move.
Talk to our team to learn more about selecting the right running shoes for your feet. We’re here to help you determine what to look for when shoe shopping to reduce your risk of foot and toenail injuries during your runs.
Wear the right running socks
Try different socks if you’re bothered by painful toenails. Thick socks add cushioning, which helps protect toenails from shock when you run. Socks with moisture-wicking capabilities help keep your feet dry, which can reduce slipping and sliding inside your shoes.
Some runners find that toe caps help eliminate stress on toenails from running. Similar to wearing thicker socks, silicone toe caps can absorb pressure and cushion toenails when they hit the end of your shoe as you run.
Trim toenails properly
Everyone needs to trim their toenails to keep shoes comfortable, but it’s particularly important for runners. Trimming toenails regularly prevents them from getting too long. It also reduces the risk of your toenails hitting the end of your shoe when you run and causing blood blisters to form.
Don’t cut your toenails too short. Short toenails are more likely to cause irritation and ingrown toenails, because your nails can grow into the skin. Our team can give you tips for shaping toenails to keep them comfortable whether you’re running or not.
If you have pain from damaged toenails, make an appointment at Wiregrass Podiatry. We can perform a physical exam to diagnose your condition, and we offer treatments to relieve painful pressure from blood blisters.
Many runners find that wearing properly fitting shoes helps reduce toenail injury. But if you continue suffering toenail pain, we can remove a toenail permanently.We understand how frustrating foot and toenail injuries can be for hardcore runners, and our team is here to help you keep your feet healthy. Call us today or book an appointment online at our Enterprise, Alabama, location to learn more.