Lost toenail: what to do?
Hi friends! I hope everyone has already moved away from the New Year holidays, and are ready to discuss serious topics. :) After all, today we will talk about what to do if the toenail fell off, and why this happens.
A broken or torn toenail is a common and often painful condition that many people experience in life. The reasons for tearing off the nail can also be different, so I propose to determine the most common of them.
Infection. A fungal infection occurs when fungus grows under or on the nails. Fungi love warm and humid environments, which is why they are so common on toenails. Symptoms of infection include yellowing, peeling of the nail surface, and brittleness. Left untreated, the nail may separate completely from the nail bed.
Bruise or injury. Any injury to the toe, whether it be a heavy object falling on it, or an unexpected urge to kick a hard stump, can also lead to the loss of the nail. :) The nail will most likely change color to become blue, purple, or black as blood builds up underneath and puts pressure on it. And the nail will probably fall off in a few weeks.
And not so good news for all avid runners : often the loss of a toenail is associated with the passage of a large number of kilometers. The repetitive movement of the toes across the front of the shoe can damage the nail and eventually cause it to come off. Often this condition is experienced by long-distance runners, as well as those who run in ill-fitting shoes, or those whose nails are too long.
Psoriasis. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes an excessive accumulation of skin cells. Although psoriasis is more common on the skin, it can also affect toenails. I wrote in more detail about nail psoriasis in one of my previous articles.
In most cases, nail psoriasis is mild and does not cause undue discomfort. However, if too many skin cells accumulate in the nail bed, it can cause the entire nail to peel off.
Nail psoriasis and fungus can look very similar. If you are at a loss with the definition, it is better to consult a doctor for advice.
What to do if the nail is just starting to fall off
If the nail has not yet fallen off, but is close to it, the main thing is not to give in to the desire to tear it off. If it is barely attached and just hanging on the skin, you can try to gently remove it with nail clippers.
If you doubt your abilities, it is better to leave the nail alone. Simply file down any uneven edges so they don't snag on anything, stop any bleeding from the wound, clean the affected area, and make sure there are no signs of infection.
What to do if the nail has already fallen off
If your nail has fallen off and is bleeding, the first thing to do is apply pressure to the area just above the nail until it stops bleeding. Cleanse the skin with soap and water and apply antibiotic ointment to prevent infection. Then cover the wound with a protective bandage.
After all open wounds have healed, you can leave the area open. But be sure to keep it clean and dry.
How to keep your new nail safe
After six weeks, you will begin to notice a new nail. It usually takes about a year for a toenail to grow back (from cuticle to tip). Here's how you can track progress:
- If you are not sure why your toenail fell off, you should identify and fix the problem before a new one appears, otherwise it may be susceptible to the same.
- If you've lost your old nail to a fungal infection, treat your new nail with an antifungal medication.
- Make sure that the new nail is even and smooth so that the uneven edges do not cling to socks or stockings.
- Keep your feet dry, change your socks often, and don't go barefoot in public to avoid infections.
- If a new nail grows back bent or damaged, be sure to see a doctor.
And what about nail polish?
For aesthetic purposes, many girls wonder if it is possible to paint the place where the nail fell off? Even if you really want to paint a new nail and pretend that everything is fine, if possible, try to avoid it. Of course, if you have a grand event coming up and you need to be fully equipped, then you can afford a one-time promotion.
If the nail has fallen off as a result of an injury, painting a new nail is not too risky. But if it's from a fungal infection, you're probably making it harder to treat the infection by painting. Not to mention, nail polish remover containing acetone can weaken the new nail plate as it grows and make it more susceptible to infection.
You probably also want to know if you can paint leather while waiting for a new nail to grow. Nail polish won't hurt your skin as long as it's a quality product and your skin is healthy, with no open cuts, blisters or infections.
Don't panic if your nail falls off, as it usually grows back within a few months or a year. However, you can reduce the risk of future nail loss by keeping your feet clean and your nails short and filed.