Nails: what they say about our health

Brittle, discolored or damaged by mold: diagnose nail changes is not always easy for dermatologists. Nails that crumble and break, the front edge of the nail which is no longer there. Dermatologists are repeatedly confronted with these problems. Many patients in the practice of a dermatologist complain of stains, grooves or other changes in their nails. But dozens of causes may stab behind causes where doctors can often come but with the flair of a detective behind. Some distortions are caused by heredity, such as the upper portion of a thumb which is no longer in length, but only grows in width during childhood. The nail is short and wide. It looks strange, but it can not hurt.


The biggest culprits for our nails: polishes and nail polish

More often than by hereditary conditions, our nails are damaged by external influences, the most by fungal infections. Often our lifestyle is guilty of nail changes:

  • by continuous contact with water and detergents are brittle nails, thin or they break down;
  • red painted nails look nice indeed, but regular application of nail polish nails may discolor orange-red;
  • black and brown them, as they tiptoe, hits hard punch or wrong with the hammer;
  • by mountaineers often wear too narrow and too small shoes can ingrown toenails or deform to claw nails.

When should you consult a dermatologist on nail changes?

Sometimes stains, grooves or dents indicative of a disease of the blood, of a condition of internal organs, or a metabolic disorder. Often changes to nail the first indication that something is wrong in the body. The problem is that different diseases can cause similar changes. Color changes one must show at least a dermatologist, if there are more than three months, especially when the skin meekest around the nail or nail slowly dies. Even if something is growing on or under the nail, the nail is released or crumbles, it is important to elucidate the cause.


Recognize fungal infection

To make a good diagnosis, the dermatologist must have good eyes and have a lot of experience. With a magnifying glass or special microscopes is in most cases found the cause. To recognize a yeast infection, he scrapes off some tissue and examines it. Sometimes he has to take a piece of tissue from the nail itself. It is not often that further investigation in the form of blood tests, X-rays, magnetic resonance or computed tomography are needed. The treatment of fungal infections is often cumbersome. As ointments or creams do not help, one must sometimes take several months tablets.

Ingrown toenails

At ingrown toenails usually only helps surgery. But the fact is that nowadays can operate much more cautious than before. One can permanently narrow the nail which not only the nail edge is trimmed away, but also is narrowed, the root of the nail. When cutting or scratching of the root piece makes one often using an etching liquid, called Phenol, which destroys the document root.


With some exceptions, rapid treatment offered

Some changes to nails disappear if you let alone themselves. That is, for example, in the case of white spots that are caused by too much force pushing back the cuticle. But do another (often innocent-looking) abnormalities are not treated in time, can have unpleasant consequences. In the case of infection or psoriasis of the nail, for example, which can suffer permanent damage thereof, and sometimes even die completely. Unfortunately also helps timely treatment is not always. This keeps nails crooked or deformed when the growth zone was damaged by an injury.

Prevention is better than cure

Also, the nails become infected or ingrown again. Prevention is better than cure. For example, always wear slippers in the pool and dry your feet always good. To ensure that not ingrown toenails, they must always be cut straight, and one should not wear too tight shoes.

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