Nail care goes beyond just updating your manicure and keeping it clean: They can be allies in pointing out health problems, including vitamin deficiencies and thyroid imbalances. Changes such as white spots, fragility, and slow growth are some of the first signs the body shows when the gland responsible for the hormones essential for maintaining the body is overactive or underactive.
Here are five signs of nails that could indicate changes in the thyroid gland:
1. Nail spoon
The condition known as koilonychia occurs when the nails take on a spoon-like shape. The deformation is characterized by the development of a depression of the nail bed and an elevation on the sides. In an interview with The Sun, American dermatologist Andrea Suarez explained that the easy way to check for this condition is to “look at the nail and put a drop of water in the center of it. If you have a spoon nail, the drop will stay in the middle of the nail. Otherwise, if the matter Naturally, the water will flow to the sides.”
The condition is not specific to thyroid disease, and can affect patients with psoriasis, anemia and diabetes for example. In any case, the recommendation is to consult a doctor.
2. Brittle and brittle nails
Having brittle and brittle nails is a very common problem, and in some cases, it can be explained by thyroid changes. According to a dermatologist, 22% of cases are associated with autoimmune thyroid disease, and another 14%, with various conditions affecting the gland. Asthenia, in turn, is associated with 70% of all cases of thyroid dysfunction.
These conditions are more common in those with hypothyroidism, where blood circulation in the fingers is reduced to maintain body temperature.
3. Slow growth
Nails grow about three and a half millimeters per month. One possible explanation for the slow pace is decreased thyroid hormone production, which has an effect on nail growth. The sign is also associated with reduced blood circulation to the tips of the hands and feet, which leads to a lack of distribution of nutrients and oxygen needed for healthy and rapid nail growth.
4. Cracks or cracks
The presence of cracks or cracks in the nails is caused by the same problem that causes brittleness – a weakened thyroid gland and poor blood circulation in the extremities. Cracks tend to start at the tip of the nail and can extend to the rest of the nail, so in some cases part of the nail can slip off.
Cracks are rare in cases of hypothyroidism, and may indicate other health conditions such as alopecia, eczema, and psoriasis.
5. White spots
White spots or streaks are known as leukonychia, and it’s a rare phenomenon that can indicate a number of conditions, such as hypothyroidism, psoriasis, pregnancy, and even a sloppy manicure.
In all cases, when signs persist for a long time, an endocrinologist should be consulted to diagnose or rule out thyroid dysfunction.
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