Google+ Authentic Parenting: What Your Nails Say About Your Health

Monday, March 25, 2013

What Your Nails Say About Your Health

Image: Film Fatale

Our nails are more than just a waste product of the body, designed to protect fingertips and toes. They are also a database, telling us exactly what is going on with our health. Examining our nails can be a non-invasive way to find out more about deficiencies and our general physical condition.

But what are we looking for?
Very pale nails:
pale nails, paired with a darker rim can be a sign of severe conditions such as:
  • heart failure
  • liver disease
  • congestive heart failure
  • diabetes
  • malnutrition
  • anemia
paler nails can also be a sign of ageing

White nails with darker rims can be a sign of liver problems, especially if they are accompanied by jaundiced fingers.

Yellow nails are most likely a sign of fungal infection, in this case, the nailbed retracts and nails may start to crumble. In some cases yellow nails can be a sign of more serious illness.

Bluish nails are a sign that the body isn't getting enough oxygen. The problem could lie in the lungs or it could be a sign of heart failure.

Rippled or pitted nails can be an early sign of psoriasis or inflammatory arthritis. Pitted nails can also be a symptom of a connective tissue disorder.

Dry, Brittle, Splitting nails can be a sign of a thyroid condition. If the nail is also yellowish, this is most lkely a fungal infection (see above).

Red, inflamed nail folds can be a sign of a connective tissue disorder or a sign of infection.

Dark lines under the nail are a serious cause of concern and should be checked by an MD immediately, as they might be a sign of melanoma.

Nail biting that can't be stopped can be a sign of anxiety or OCD that needs to be treated.

Grooves (overwidth) in the nail can be a sign of iron or zinc deficiency. They also occur after illnesses with high fever or injuries of the finger.

Nail clubbing: when the fingertip enlarges and the nail curves over the fingertip, this can be a sign of oxygen deprivation. This symptom is also linked to Inflammatroy bowel, AIDS and certain liver conditions.

Hollowed nails are most likely a sign of iron deficiency, but can also be a sign of hemochromatosis, a condition in which your body absorbs too much iron from the food. They are also called spoon nails and are often carved out enough to hold a drop of liquid. They can also be a sign of hypothyroidism or heart disease.

Many nail irregularities aren't a cause for concern. If your nail irregularities are paired with other symptoms, it is imperative to get a medical check-up!



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