Fingernails 1

Your fingernails might seem like nothing more than a fashion accessory or a canvas for colourful polish, but they can actually be a valuable window into your overall health. The state of your fingernails can reveal various clues about your well-being, indicating potential underlying health issues. From nutritional deficiencies to serious diseases, the appearance and condition of your nails can serve as a reflection of your inner health.

Before you whip out a magnifying glass and start studying your fingers, know that not all changes to the nail are bad. Some are completely harmless, and others are a normal part of ageing or may be a side effect of a medication. “It’s important not to get alarmed if you see something abnormal. But if you do notice a change and are concerned, it’s worth bringing it to the attention of your healthcare provider, he says, especially if you are experiencing any other symptoms, like fatigue, shortness of breath or belly pain

Pale Nails

White nails, also known as leukonychia, describe fingernails that are partially or completely white in colour. The white color could be the result of several things such as trauma, anemia, dietary deficiencies, heart or kidney disease, or even poisoning.

White Nails

If the nails are mostly white with darker rims, this can indicate liver problems, such as hepatitis. In this image, you can see the fingers are also jaundiced, another sign of liver trouble.

Yellow Nails

One of the most common causes of yellow nails is a fungal infection. As the infection worsens, the nail bed may retract, and nails may thicken and crumble. In rare cases, yellow nails can indicate a more serious condition such as severe thyroid disease, lung disease, diabetes or psoriasis.

Bluish Nails

Nails with a bluish tint can mean the body isn’t getting enough oxygen. This could indicate a lung problem, such as emphysema. Some heart problems can be associated with bluish nails.

Rippled Nails

If the nail surface is rippled or pitted, this may be an early sign of psoriasis or inflammatory arthritis. Discoloration of the nail is common; the skin under the nail can seem reddish-brown.

Cracked or Split Nails

Dry, brittle nails that frequently crack or split have been linked to thyroid disease. Cracking or splitting combined with a yellowish hue is more likely due to a fungal infection.

Puffy Nail Fold

Chronic paronychia is a condition that causes inflammation, redness, tenderness, and swelling of the skin folds and tissues surrounding the nails. It is usually the result of irritants or allergens but it can be caused by the fungus Candida albicans, other infections or psoriasis. It can usually be treated with topical steroids.

Dark Lines Beneath the Nail

This nail discolouration is called melanonychia and is caused by the pigment melanin. There are several possible causes including skin cancer, infection or injury.

Gnawed Nails

Biting your nails may be nothing more than an old habit, but in some cases, it’s a sign of persistent anxiety that could benefit from treatment. Nail biting or picking has also been linked to obsessive-compulsive disorder. If you can’t stop, it’s worth discussing with your doctor.

Nails Are Only Part of the Puzzle

Though nail changes accompany many conditions, these changes are rarely the first sign. And many nail abnormalities are harmless — not everyone with white nails has hepatitis. If you’re concerned about the appearance of your nails, see your doctor or a dermatologist.

Your fingernails are much more than a cosmetic feature. They can act as a mirror to your overall health, reflecting both minor and serious health concerns. While not every nail issue implies a severe health problem, it’s essential to pay attention to changes in your nails and consult a healthcare professional if you notice any persistent, unusual symptoms.

Remember that maintaining a balanced diet, managing stress, and practising good nail hygiene can help keep your nails healthy and potentially prevent some of the health issues they may signal. Your fingernails might be tiny, but they can speak volumes about your well-being, serving as a reminder that taking care of your health goes far beyond what’s on the surface.

 

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Benjamin Mensah [Freshhope] is a young man, very passionate about the youth of this Generation. Very friendly, reliable and very passionate about the things of God and all that I do. The mission is to inform, educate and entertain. Feel free to send your whatsapp messages to +233266550849 and call on +233242645676

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