What you should do and what you should not do to have healthy nails
Have you ever wondered if you are taking good care of your nails? This is what you have to know to keep your nails in perfect condition.
Take a close look at your nails.
Are they strong and healthy-looking? Or do you notice that there are grooves, indentations, or areas that have an unusual color or shape? Many unwanted nail conditions can be avoided with proper care. Others may indicate an undiagnosed condition that requires a lot of attention.
What is normal and what is not of your nails.
Nails, which are made up of laminated layers of a protein called keratin, grow from the base of the nail under the cuticle. Healthy nails are smooth, without marks or grooves. They are uniform in color and consistency, with no staining or discoloration.
Sometimes harmless vertical ridges form, extending from the cuticle to the tip of the nail. Vertical stretch marks are usually more prominent with age. White lines or spots may also form due to injuries, but these eventually disappear as the nail grows.
However, not all nail conditions are normal. Consult the nearest doctor or dermatologist if you notice the following:
- Color changes in the nail, such as discoloration of the entire nail or a dark line under it
- Changes in the shape of the nail, such as curved nailsThinning or thickening of the nails
- Separation of the nail from the surrounding skin
- Bleeding around the nails
- Swelling or pain around the nails
- lack of nail growth
- Nail care: what to doTo keep your nails looking their best, do the following:
Keep your nails dry and clean.
This prevents bacteria from growing under the nails. Repeated or prolonged contact with water can contribute to nail splitting. Wear cotton-lined rubber gloves when you wash dishes, clean, or use harsh chemicals.
Use sharp manicure scissors or nail clippers.
Cut your nails straight across, then round the tips into a smooth curve.
Use moisturizing cream. When using hand lotion, rub it into your nails as well.
Apply a protective layer. The application of a nail hardener can help strengthen the nails.
Consult with your doctor about biotin. Some research has suggested that the nutritional supplement biotin might help strengthen weak or brittle nails.
Nail care: what not to do
To prevent nail damage, do not do the following:
Don’t bite your nails or run your cuticles.
These habits can damage the nail bed. Even a minor cut along the nail can allow bacteria or fungus to enter and cause an infection.
Don’t remove hangnails.
You may be ripping out living tissue along with the hangnail. Instead, cut the hangnails carefully.
Do not use strong nail care products.
Limit the use of nail polish remover. When using nail polish remover, choose an acetone-free formula.
Don’t ignore problems.
If you have a nail problem that doesn’t go away on its own or is associated with other signs and symptoms, see your doctor or dermatologist for evaluation.
A note on manicures and pedicures.
If you rely on manicures or pedicures for healthy-looking nails, keep a few things in mind.
Go only to salons that display a current state license and work only with technicians who are also state board certified. Don’t have your cuticles removed; They act to seal the skin to the nail plate, so removal can lead to nail infection. Also, make sure your nail technician properly sterilizes all tools used during the procedure to prevent the spread of infection.
You can also ask how the foot baths are cleaned. Ideally, a bleach solution is used between clients and the filters are cleaned regularly.
It’s easy to neglect your nails, but by following a few basic steps you can keep them healthy and strong.
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