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Where Do the White Spots on Your Fingernails Come From?

What is the cause of white spots on your fingernails?


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These white spots are medically known as leukonychia. They are neither caused by vitamin nor mineral deficiency. They are occasionally indicative of an infection but most often than not, they are just caused by an injury. They don’t show up right away just like how bruises seem to take some time before appearing. Usually it takes about a few days or even weeks before you start observing these spots and most probably you won’t be able to recall what trauma might have happened before you acquired them.

You might have noticed white spots on your fingernails and you can’t seem to recall where they could’ve come from or when they even started to appear. Many myths surround these mysterious white spots and surprisingly the only explanation to this phenomenon is prior injury to your nail beds, very similar to how you acquire bruises.

Note that the types of injuries that cause these spots are only minor ones and not the ones that are caused from being hit by a heavy object or getting your finger caught when closing the door. The latter can cause black spots instead of white which are signs of tissue death. Since fingernails grow about half an inch per month on the average, an injury might take about eight weeks to fully grow out. In some cases, the white spots just fade in time without growing out completely.

Eating excessive mayonnaise or calcium deficiency are some of the common myths linked with white spots on fingernails. Appearance of these spots may indicate zinc deficiency, but a lot of times they are accompanied by other symptoms like a slow immune system or hair loss. In other cases they may be a sign of an allergic reaction to product for nails such as nail polish, polish remover or hardener.

White spots are also commonly found on the nails of people who often wear acrylic nails. These spots might be an indication of an injury to the nail bed while applying the nails or perhaps an allergic reaction to the nail glue or the product itself. People who use these nails are also prone to fungal infections caused by nails, causing their fingernails to become yellowish in color. If you are doubtful of your fingernails’ health or see a big white patch on a nail bed or two, stop using nail products and seek assistance from a dermatologist.

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