Why is your toenail a strange color
In our lives, we are used to being so concerned with how our fingernails look. We tend to them, care for them, make sure they look good and if anything strange is going on on our nails we tend to pick up on it immediately.
Our feet, however, are generally a bit more neglected. It might be because we don’t see our feet close up very often or we forget that our feet do a lot of hard work and sometimes need extra TLC after a long day.
Our feet can be quite susceptible to bacterial or fungal infections. Fungal infections can be tricky to spot at the beginning, but it is imperative to catch them early on to stop them from becoming worse and spreading. It is however important to remember that just because your nails have a strange color does not necessarily mean you have a fungal infection.
Some things that might cause discoloration of your toenails:
Staining caused by nail polishes
Some darker nail polishes might stain your nails when worn for prolonged periods. It is best to apply a base nail polish before the color. This will not only protect your nails against discoloration, but it will also help the nail polish last longer on your nails.
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You might have bumped your toe and not noticed exactly how hard it was. Or the bruising might have been hidden under nail polish, and when removed you forgot about hurting your nail. Your nail will have to grow out for the bruising to go away. In severe cases, the nail might fall off and a new nail will start to grow out in its place.
If you play sports or wear shoes that press against your toenails a lot, then chances are your toenails will become bruised. Repeated trauma can also cause white spots to form on your nails.
Debris under your toenail
Our toenails are great for collecting dirt and lint. Make sure to clean your toenails every day after showering. If you do so after showering or taking a bath you will be able to easily remove the debris from under your toenails with limited risk of hurting yourself.
Use tools specifically made for cleaning under your toenails. This set doesn’t just help with getting into hard-to-reach spaces under your toenails, but it also helps with the treatment of ingrown toenails. Buy on Amazon.com
Aging can also cause your nails to change in color
As we become older our nails will start growing slower. They can become thicker and change to a yellowish color. They can also become more brittle and harder to cut.
Certain medications and treatments can affect our fingers- and toenails. If you notice your toenails changing in appearance after starting with a new medication, it might be a good idea to consult your doctor and ask them if it is a common side effect.
Underlining health issue
There are many diseases and disorders like psoriasis, diabetes, and others that can affect your nails.
If ever in doubt, consult your doctor.
Toenail funguses can be quite common as our feet are usually kept in dark damp environments. Having a toenail fungus can be challenging to get rid of, but it’s not impossible. That’s why it’s important to see the signs early and treat them in time as these infections are highly contagious and can spread to all your nails.
Now you might be asking, how do I know if my toenails have a fungal infection? In the beginning, your nails will start to change in color. It can be anything from green, yellow, white, brown, or black. As the fungus progresses it will start to change the appearance of your toenails even further. It can thicken the toenails, causing them to become brittle, lift off the nail bed, and form ridges. In severe cases, your toenails might even have a bit of a strange odor.
How to get rid of a toenail fungus
Many home remedies have been proven to be effective on most nail funguses. If you treat it early on you will most likely be able to stop the fungus from growing and spreading. Some of these remedies are:
- Hydrogen peroxide: You can either wipe it directly onto your nails or mix it with some water and soak your feet for a few minutes every day.
- Apple cider vinegar foot soak: ACV has anti-fungal properties that will help kill the fungus.
- Essential oils: Some oils like Teatree oil are very effective for combating nail funguses.
- Toenail fungus medication: If nothing seems to be working you can buy some anti-fungal treatment from your local pharmacy.
Some more home remedies you can check out here
I wrote an article about nail diseases and disorders that can also change the appearance of your toenails.
Consult a medical professional
If you start noticing your toes changing in color, becoming painful or any other strange and sudden change in the appearance of your toenails, don’t hesitate to seek medical advice. Our bodies have wonderful ways of communicating to us when something is wrong, our toenails are just one of these ways.