Secrets Your Nails Reveal
The eyes may be the windows to the soul, but your fingernail may provide a peek into the status of your health. Nail changes or abnormalities are often the result of nutritional deficiencies or can reveal specific health conditions.
Deficiencies produce the following changes in the nails:
Lack of vitamin A and calcium causes dryness and brittleness.
Vitamin A and B deficiency causes fragile nails, with horizontal and vertical ridges.
Insufficient intake of vitamin B12 leads to excessive dryness, very rounded and curved nail ends, and darkened nails.
Lack of protein, folic acid, and vitamin C causes hangnails. White bands are also an indication of protein deficiency.
If there are insufficient “friendly” bacteria (lactobacillus) present in the body, fungus forms under and around nails.
Lack of hydrochloric acid (HCI) contributes to splitting nails.
The symptoms listed below may possibly signal the health problems listed. They do not provide definite diagnoses. But if you notice any of these, let your doctor know.
Pale or bluish nails: this may indicate anemia.
Pink color slow in returning when nail is squeezed: This may indicate decreased or slowed blood circulation
White spots these occur as the result of an injury to the nail; they are not due to zinc deficiency, as some people believe.
White lines parallel to the lunula (and not the cuticle) these indicate some sort of systemic (body wide) insult.
Clubbed nails these nails are shaped like the backside of a spoon and may indicate cardiopulmonary disease or asthma.
Spoon nails these dips inward and could mean certain types of anemia or injury.
Pitted nails these punched-out looking spots may signify psoriasis.
Thick nail may indicate the vascular system is weakening and blood is not circulating properly.
If the white moon area of the nail turns red, it may indicate heart problems; If it turns slate blue, then it indicates over exposures to metal or lung trouble.
Brittle nails signify possible thyroid problems, impaired kidney function, and circulation problems.
Flat nail can denote Raynaud’s disease.
Yellow nail can indicate internal disorders long before other symptoms appear-the lymphatic system, respiratory disorders, diabetics, and liver disorders.
White nails indicate possible liver or kidney disorders and/or anemia.
Deep blue nail beds may indicate asthma or emphysema.
Nail beading is a sign of rheumatoid arthritis.
Brittle, soft, shiny nails without a moon may indicate an overactive thyroid.
White lines across the nail may indicate a liver disease.
A half white nail with dark spots on the tip, possible kidney disease.
Raised nails at the base with small white ends show a respiratory disorder such as emphysema or chronic bronchitis. This nail condition may also be hereditary.
Downward curved nail ends may denote heart, liver, or arsenic poisoning.
White lines show possible heart disease, high fever, or arsenic poisoning.
Nails that resemble hammered brass indicate a tendency toward partial or total hair loss.
Unusually wide, square nails can suggest a hormonal disorder.
White nail with pink near the tips are a sign of cirrhosis.
Anything resembling a wart around the nail this could be a skin cancer and needs to be examined by a doctor.
Dark spots this could be melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. If the spot bleeds into the cuticle or nail folds, this is a serious warning sign that requires immediate medical attention.
Nail shingling; they split like roof shingles at the end of the nail. The reason for this condition is-exposure to harsh detergents, and too frequent use of nail polish remover.
Beau’s line these horizontal depressions occur after a traumatic event, such as a high fever. You can actually date the event by measuring the nail and figuring in the growth rate. Your fingernails grow about one eighth of an inch a month. Fingernails grow faster than toenails. Nails on the longest fingers grow the fastest. If your right-handed, nails on that hand grows faster than on your left-hand the opposite is true for lefties. Your fingernail will also grow faster during the summer, during pregnancy, and when they are recovering from injury.
Separation of the nail plate from the nail bed, a condition called onycholysis. It occurs after an injury, infections, allergies to nail cosmetics, exposure to chemicals, or diseases like psoriasis. If the nail appears white, it may have separated. You’ll need to see your doctor and you will want to be careful not to aggravate the problem further. Unfortunately, once the nail has separated it won’t reattach. You have to wait until a new nail has grown out. You also have to take care of the nail matrix. The matrix is your nail factory. If this is damage, it will produce a deformed nail or even worse no nail at all.
"Doubt everything. Find your own light."
-- Last words of Gautama Buddha, in Theravada tradition