My big toe nail is beginning to curl under on both sides. I am 63, and have never had this problem before. Is there something happening about which I should be concerned?
Is it getting thick at the ends? Any brittleness? Any inflammation along the sides?
No brittleness or inflammation yet. They are just "curling" down and it hurts.
This has never been this way before. As to getting thick on the ends, my big toe nails have always been "strong", and I don't think they are any thicker. It is just the curling down that is causing pain. They are not growing out, like ingrown toenails, but just curling down. I noticed discomfort a week or so ago, and went to trim them (I thought that perhaps they had gotten too long), and was shocked at the sight of them. They used to be flat, and now they look like an upside down smile. The right one is worse than the left.
What sort of shoes do you wear?
Soft leather (not synthetic) closed toed flat shoes - square on end. I haven't worn heels for many years.I don't feel that I have to wear uncomfortable shoes! At home, I tend to wear slippers or house shoes, or go barefoot. I am not on my feet much at work. I work on a computer, and sit down most of the day.
Well, there are a few possibilities for nail changes. One you could have a nutritional deficiency, but this usually would affect all of the nails, including on the hands. Two, this could be ingrown toe nails, or three, this could be nail fungus. Usually nail fungus causes a thickening of the toe nail, but sometimes it can initially appear as discoloration and/or nail curling.
I would make an appointment to see you podiatrist. They will need to trim your nails so that, they don't dig into the skin and become ingrown. They will be able to see if you have a nail fungus and, if so, prescribe you some medication.