Onycholysis is when your nail separates from its nail bed. It often appears after an injury to your nail, but it may have other causes, including fungi. Treatment may only involve cutting away the separated nail as it grows out, or you may need to take antifungal medications or stop using certain nail products.
onycholysis is the medical term for the separation of the nail from the skin underneath. Onycholysis is not uncommon and has several possible causes.
This condition lasts for several months because the fingernail or toenail does not reattach to the nail bed. Once a new nail grows to replace the old one, the symptoms should subside. Fingernails take 4 to 6 months to fully grow, and toenails can take 8 to 12 months.
People who are assigned female at birth (AFAB).
Onycholysis is common, and it generally lasts for several months or over a year. Any conditions that affect the skin underneath your nails eventually cause onycholysis.
Symptoms of onycholysis include:
- Nails that peel away from their nail beds.
- Tough, thick nail beds.
- An abnormal border between the pink area of your nail and the white edge of your nail. The border may look wavy, and the white areas may be thicker in some areas and thinner in others.
The following are common causes of onycholysis:
Injuries (trauma): Injuries to a nail or the area where your nails start to grow (nail matrix) can cause onycholysis. You can injure these areas by bumping or hitting your nails, wearing shoes that are too small or even keeping your nails in water for too long. Regularly going to a nail salon to get manicures can also cause onycholysis. Manicurists use a lot of force to trim, buff and polish your nails. Even tapping your nails on a hard surface over a long period can cause onycholysis.
Reaction to chemicals: Chemicals in nail polish, nail gloss, nail hardener, nail polish remover and fake nails can cause onycholysis.
Fungal infections: Fungal infections occur when fungus gets between your nail and nail bed, usually through cracks or cuts in your finger or toe. Fungal infections cause your nails to become thick and yellow, and they may show white spots and streaks.
Injury to the nail can cause onycholysis.
Wearing tight shoes can cause injury.
This condition can also be the result of an allergy to products used on the nails, such as chemical nail polish remover or artificial nail tips. Onycholysis can also be a symptom of nail fungus or psoriasis.
Other causes include trauma or drug reactions.
Even repetitive nail tapping or drumming can be considered trauma. Nails tend to be a barometer of your overall health. If your nails look unhealthy or you have problems like onycholysis, this could be the first visible sign that something deeper is going on in your body.. It could also mean you don’t have enough essential vitamins or minerals, such as iron.
Treatment of onycholysis:
Take medications and apply treatments as instructed by your healthcare professional.
- Regularly trim your affected nails.
- Protect your nails from any additional damage.
- Wash your hands regularly to prevent an infection. Use a clean washcloth to help reach beneath your nails.
- Use antifungal or antimicrobial soaks to help prevent infection. Antimicrobial soaks may include lemon juice, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide and tea tree, orange or lemongrass essential oils.
The Psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis Association estimates that at least 50 percent of people with psoriasis have nail problems. Nails are particularly suffering from psoriasis. Nail psoriasis are often difficult to treat. Doctors may prescribe topical vitamin D or corticosteroids to treat nail psoriasis .A biopsy may reveal that you have thyroid disease or a vitamin deficiency that is causing onycholysis. during this case, a doctor may prescribe medication or an oral supplement to treat the underlying cause.