Nail Disorders and Their Causes

Nail Disorders and Their Causes

From Brittle Tips to Discolouration - The Causes of Common Nail Disorders

Our nails are a key indicator of our overall health, although they often take a backseat in self-care routines. Healthy nails appear smooth and have even coloring and texture while changes in their appearance can mean underlying problems. Consequently, familiarize yourself with different types of nail disorders and the mysteries behind their causes, prevention, and treatment.

The Causes of Common Nail Disorders:

Some of the common causes of nail disorders include:

  • Fungal Nail Infections (Onychomycosis): It is one of the main causes of nail discoloration. These infections affect toenails and are caused by fungi that thrive well in warm dampness. Tight shoes, sweaty feet, and minor traumas make the perfect breeding ground for these uninvited visitors. 
  • Brittle Nails: There are several factors like aging, frequent handwashing, harsh chemicals, and nutritional deficiencies that can be blamed for dry-splitting nails which break easily.
  • Psoriasis: It can cause your nails to thicken, pit, or change color (yellow, brown, or red).
  • Paronychia: It is an inflammation around the nail fold caused by bacterial or fungal infections. Hangnails cuts around cuticles biting case injuries provide entry points for disease-causing agents. 
  • Beau’s Lines: These horizontal grooves across the nail plate indicate interrupted growth resulting from sicknesses like malnutrition or severe physical stressors. 
  • Ingrown Toenails: This results from wearing tight shoes or poor nail trimming whereby the edge of your toenail digs into the skin thus leading to pain, redness, and swelling of that area.
  • Vertical Ridges: They are typical age-related features that may not be alarming. However, if ridges are deep or sudden, then an underlying health condition such as vitamin deficiency or anemia could explain them.
  • White Spots (Leukonychia): Minor injuries on the nail matrix usually cause little white spots. But serious or persistent white spots can mean something more alarming.
  • Yellow Nails: Fungal infections are a common nails damage cause, but yellowing can also result from smoking, the use of nail polish, and some medical conditions.

Prevention is Key!

While some nail diseases and disorders stem from underlying medical conditions, many can be prevented by making simple lifestyle changes:

  • Keep hands and feet clean and dry: Wash regularly and ensure that they are completely dried especially between the toes.
  • Wear well-fitting, breathable shoes: Avoid shoes that suffocate your toes by being tight as well as not letting any air in.
  • Put on gloves when handling harsh chemicals: Your hands should never touch detergents, cleaners, or other irritants.
  • Regularly moisturize hands & nails: Go for lotions & creams made specifically for nails.
  • Eat a healthy diet with essential vitamins and minerals: Emphasize fruits, vegetables whole grains & lean protein sources.
  • Don’t bite nails or pick at cuticles: They damage the nail bed allowing bacteria in.

Useful Tips to Pamper Your Precious Nails:

Besides prevention, having a good nail care routine does help:

  • Clip nails often using sharp clippers: Do this by following the natural shape of the actual fingernail while avoiding cutting it too short. 
  • File single direction one-way to prevent splitting: This means that you should avoid back-and-forth sawing motions with an emery board. 
  • Use less polish and remove without acetone if possible: Consider water-based polishes that do not contain any acetone.
  • Choose polishes and strengtheners that moisturize: Look for biotin, keratin, or calcium-enhanced formulations.

American Hospital Dubai: Your Partner in Nail Health

The American Hospital Dubai has expert dermatologists and aestheticians who offer comprehensive treatments for the causes of nail diseases and disorders. This includes advanced diagnosing procedures, individualized therapy options as well as prevention measures, and advice on nail care to provide you necessary expertise for healthy beautiful nails.

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