Your nails can reveal clues to your overall health. Indeed, a touch of white here, a rosy tinge there, or some rippling, bumps, or discoloration, may indicate disease in your body. As well, problems in your liver, lungs, and heart can show up in your nails.
Nails: Pale Nails
Very pale coloration can sometimes be a sign of serious illness, such as:
- Congestive heart failure
- Liver disease
If the color is mostly white with darker rims, this can indicate liver problems, such as hepatitis.
One of the most common causes of yellow coloration is a fungal infection. As the infection worsens, the nail bed may retract, and nails may thicken and crumble. In rare cases, it can indicate a more serious condition such as severe thyroid disease, lung disease, diabetes or psoriasis.
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 also be associated with bluish nails.
If the surface is rippled or pitted, this may be an early sign of psoriasis or inflammatory arthritis. Discoloration is common; the skin under the nail can seem reddish-brown.
Cracked or Split Nails
Dry, brittle cuticles 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
If the skin around the nail appears red and puffy, this is known as inflammation of the nail fold. It may be the result of lupus or another connective tissue disorder. Infection can also cause redness and inflammation of the nail fold.
Dark Lines Beneath the Nail
Dark lines beneath the nail should be investigated as soon as possible. They are sometimes caused by melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer.
Chewed up Nails
Biting 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, seek medical help.
Nails Are Only An Indicator
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 appearance, see a dermatologist.
At The Park Crescent HealthCare & Rehabilitation Center, patient care is our #1 priority and focus. Let’s face it; do any of us pay really close attention to our nails? Perhaps the gals do, us men certainly don’t. The medical and nursing staff at ParkCrescent pay attention and address every facet of the individual:
Here is our Mission Statement:
Watch this video on nails as an indicator of possible disease in your body: