Signs of Health Problems in Nails : How to Read Them

Signs of health problems in nails can help you keep track of your health.

Noticing signs of health problems in nails can prove to be quite ordinary, yet small changes in the shape or color can make a difference.
Whether we are happy or sad, we paint, bite and file our nails. But we often ignore looking at them for signs of health problems. Something wrong with your body can come as a first signal on your fingernails. Here are some abnormalities of the nail that can signal it’s time to see a doctor.

1. Feel your nail with your fingers. Ribbing of the nail can signal psoriasis or inflammatory arthritis. Signals of lung diseases come by excess tissue near the ends of fingers, called “clubbing”. Clubbing is also associated with inflammatory bowel disease, cardiovascular disease and liver conditions. If the edges of the nail tilt upward, resembling a spoon, this maybe a sign of anemia.

2. Spotting signs of health problems in nails also means examining your nails for variations in color. White nails can mean health issues related to the liver, such as hepatitis; while yellowish nails can signal respiratory and lung problems or diabetes. Kidney problems are associated with nails that are half-white and half-pink.

3. Check your fingernails for attachment problems. If the nail is disconnected from the bed, this can signal a myriad of conditions, including malnutrition and uncontrolled diabetes.

4. Look beyond the nail to the nail bed. Be aware of nail beds that are red or pale. Red nail beds have been linked to heart disease. White or pale nail beds have been linked to anemia. Red stripes have been linked to lupus and connective tissue disease, while dark lines underneath the nail can signal melanoma.

Visit your doctor if see any signs of health problems in nails. Be sure to note any additional symptoms as well as how long your nails have had color and texture differences.

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