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Here’s Why You May be Suffering from Nail Abnormalities

Having nail abnormalities may not sound like a big deal, but in reality, they sometimes are. Nail abnormalities are often a sign of a major health issue. You can think of nail abnormalities as symptoms of a particular condition. So whether your nails are pitting, splitting, bulging, or changing colors, we’ll explain why you may be suffering from common nail abnormalities. There can be several causes for nail abnormalities, some of which can be pretty minor. However, it’s always safe to speak with your dermatologist if you have any questions.

Why Do You Have Abnormal Nails?

1. You May Not Be Getting Enough Iron

It’s no coincidence that doctor’s almost always stress the point that we should eat enough dark green vegetables. This is because they produce a healthy amount of iron. Having an iron deficiency can cause severe fatigue, lack of mental clarity, irregular heartbeat, and more. Iron deficiency can be caused by malnourishment, celiac disease, cancer, or an autoimmune disorder.

Spoon nails are thought to be a direct result of iron deficiency. Spoon nails are nails that curve upward along the edges, creating a scoop shape deep enough to hold a drop of water.

2. You Could Have Lung or Heart Disease

Now don’t panic, there is no guarantee that strange nails are directly related to these diseases. Nonetheless, it is a possibility that should be observed. Clubbing is a nail abnormality commonly linked to cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. “Clubbing” describes a nail abnormality in which the fingernail gradually thickens and curves over the fingertip. The tip of the finger will also appear to be bulging and swollen.

3. You May Be Malnourished

Malnourishment doesn’t necessarily mean you aren’t eating enough. Generally, being malnourished means being dangerously deficient in necessary vitamins. High fever diseases, pneumonia, and diabetes can all result in malnourishment and because of this, sufferers may experience Beau’s lines. Beau’s lines are a small nail abnormality in which a depression on the nail goes across the entire surface horizontally.

4. It May Be Due to Psoriasis

As if having psoriasis wasn’t rough enough, this skin condition can also cause nail pitting. Nail pitting is when the nail has tiny depressions or pricks all over the surface of the nail.

5. You Injured Your Nail

If you’ve ever slammed your finger in a door or jammed your nail against something, then odds are you’ve seen leukonychia, or “white spots” appear on your nail. These typically grow out with the nail and disappear over time.

6. You Could Have a Fungal Infection

Fungal infections come in many shapes and sizes (and species). Nail fungal infections, however, can lead to discoloration, specifically the yellowing of nails. As the infection worsens, the nail may become thick, retract, and begin to crumble.

These are just a few causes of common nail abnormalities. To see if your nail abnormality is a sign of an underlying health issue, our experts at The Dermatology Group are here to help! We will gladly offer you advice, treatment options and additional resources. Give us a call today!

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