Your nails can offer very important information about your health. Neglecting nail health could have very unpleasant implications and any signs, imperfections or issues should be addressed as quickly as possible.
Yellow stains are not really a health concern. This happens either as a result of aging or smoking. If it happens to women, it could also be caused by acrylic nails or paint. There are also some forms of fungus that can have this effect. If there is actual coloring and not just a pale nuance, go see a doctor.
Dry, cracked, or brittle nails
These are typically caused by dryness of the nail plate, which can be caused by too much swimming in a pool with treated water, living in an environment with low humidity or from too much exposure to household cleaning solutions. Women get it sometimes from nail polish remover. You should consult a doctor since it could also be a sign of hypothyroidism. Try using a moisturizing lotion for your nails. The best choices are based on hyaluronic acid, glycerin or Shea butter. You can also supplement your diet with biotin, however you should consult a professional on that matter as well.
If the ends of your fingers swell and the nails become rounded and curved, it could mean that you have a liver or a kidney disease. Speak to your doctor immediately should this ever happen to you.
Some people link white spots under the nails to calcium deficiency. More often than not it is actually a result of minor trauma. In any case, there is no reason to worry about them.
If you notice side to side ridges on your nails, it could be a result of direct trauma. If you see it on multiple nails, it probably means you’ve got a disease and you should definitely see a doctor. They could also come as a reaction to a drug, for instance they could appear after going through chemotherapy.
Vertical ridges are simply a sign of aging, similar to wrinkles.
Severely bitten nails
Constant nail biting could be a sign of obsessive-compulsive disorder. It is a rather common habit; however this doesn’t make it right. There are plenty of germs that could enter your body in this way and it doesn’t look too good either. Apparently it can be treated by applying an awful tasting compound onto the nails.
“Spoon” nails describe a thin nail forming into a concave shape. This could be a result of iron deficiency anemia. If your nails are also pale, go see a doctor. You will probably be recommended some iron supplements.
You should see a doctor if you notice any pits or dents on your fingers or nails. This is most commonly a sign of psoriasis.
Dark stripes or a painful growth
See your doctor immediately if you notice any black discoloration or a painful growth on the nail. This is a sure sign of melanoma. Melanoma is one of the worst types of skin cancer out there and you should urgently address the issue.
The health of your nails is a very good indication of your overall health and diet. When you eat, your body breaks down the food into simple chemical compounds. In the process it makes energy and then delivers the compounds to wherever they are needed in the body. You body is so smart that it triages the nutrients you eat. Similar to how cases are dealt with in an emergency room, depending on how critical they are, your body will send vitamins, proteins and all that you are giving it, to where it needs it most. Typically, it’s the major organs. Consequently, your nails, hair and extremities are the last on the priority list. Therefore, any issues regarding your nails could be linked to your diet. If there is something wrong in your diet, evidence might come from your nail. On the other hand, if there are issues with your nails, you could consider adapting to a healthier diet.
Do you experience any issues with your nails? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.