sometimes, horizontal splits may occur in the fingernails, resulting in thin layers of the nails peeling back. There are many different causes of peeling or splitting nails. Doctors call the condition onychoschizia. Nails consist of layers of a protective fibrous protein called keratin that besides occurs in skin and hair. Keratin makes the nails potent, but external trauma or an fundamental health condition can cause thin layers of the collar to peel off. When this occurs, it can leave the nails looking thin. They may besides feel medium or uncomfortable.

here, we look at the causes of peeling nails and how to prevent and treat them.

What are the causes?

Fingernails share on PinterestCauses of peeling nails include exposure to chemicals and wearing acrylic nails. Mild iron insufficiency is frequently the campaign of peeling nails. however, some external causes and underlying health conditions can besides produce this symptom. external causes include :

  • washing the hands excessively
  • washing dishes without gloves
  • peeling nail polish off instead of using remover
  • wearing gel or acrylic nails
  • using the nails to pick things up or open things
  • buffing the nails too much
  • exposing the nails to certain chemicals
  • spending time in hot or humid places

Nails can take a hanker prison term to grow, so the results of external injury may not become visible until many months later. Underlying health conditions that may cause peeling or brittle breeze through admit :

  • iron-deficiency anemia
  • dehydration
  • underactive thyroid
  • lung disease, which may also cause yellow nails
  • kidney disease, which brown discoloration on the nails can also indicate

Changes in the means the nails grow may besides happen as a person gets older. Researchers have suggested that age-related changes in a person ’ randomness nails may occur as a result of rake circulation problems and extended exposure to UV rays.

Related symptoms

A balmy iron lack is more likely than a severe underlying health condition to be the cause of peeling nails. however, it is placid useful for people to be aware of other conditions that may cause peeling nails. If they have any early relevant symptoms in accession to peeling nails, they will know to mention these to a doctor of the church. Below, we cover the extra symptoms of conditions that may cause undress, brittle, or discolored nails .


Without treatment, a mild iron insufficiency can become more serious and may lead to anemia. Anemia occurs when the body is depleted in healthy red lineage cells and does not have adequate hemoglobin available. Hemoglobin is a means in crimson rake cells that helps them to carry oxygen around the torso. In addition to peeling nails, the symptoms of a severe iron lack may include :

  • chest pain or a rapid heartbeat
  • feeling very weak or tired
  • shortness of breath
  • a headache
  • feeling dizzy or lightheaded
  • having cold hands or feet
  • having a sore or inflamed tongue
  • pale skin
  • changes in appetite


partake on PinterestDrinking water regularly may help to prevent peeling nails. People can become exsiccate if they do not drink adequate urine or non-caffeinated beverages. dehydration may cause a range of symptoms, deoxyadenosine monophosphate well as peeling nails. These can include :

  • dry mouth, eyes, and skin
  • increased thirst
  • infrequent urination
  • dark yellow urine
  • a headache
  • feeling dizzy
  • tiredness

Underactive thyroid

An hypoactive thyroid does not produce adequate hormones. vitamin a well as brittle nails, an hypoactive thyroid may cause :

  • reduced sweating
  • dry skin
  • constipation
  • difficulty concentrating
  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol
  • decreased appetite
  • weight gain
  • feeling cold
  • feeling tired

Lung disease

In some instances, nail abnormalities may be a bless of lung disease. According to the American Lung Association, the symptoms of lung disease may include :

  • a cough lasting a month or longer
  • shortness of breath
  • mucus production lasting a month or longer
  • wheezing
  • coughing up blood
  • unexplained chest pain

Kidney disease

According to a 2015 article, brown stain on the upper half of the complete may indicate kidney disease. other symptoms may include :

  • reduced appetite
  • weight loss
  • itchy skin
  • frequent need to urinate
  • water retention
  • trouble sleeping
  • shortness of breath
  • blood in urine
  • muscle cramps

Treating peeling nails at home

partake on PinterestPumpkin seeds are rich in iron. The best way to treat peeling nails is :

  • eating iron-rich foods or taking iron supplements
  • keeping nails trimmed short
  • filing nails to a rounded edge so that they are less likely to catch and tear
  • keeping nails moisturized

The recommend casual inhalation of iron is 18 milligrams ( magnesium ). Iron-rich foods include :

  • spinach
  • legumes, such as peas and beans
  • shellfish
  • organ meat, such as liver
  • red meat
  • pumpkin seeds

research suggests that coconut oil is a safe and effective clamber moisturizer. Rubbing coconut oil into nails may help to keep them moisturized .

Treatments for underlying conditions

Although it is rare, underlie health conditions can sometimes cause peeling nails. Below are the treatments for each of these conditions .


The standard treatment for iron insufficiency is to eat more iron-rich foods or take cast-iron supplements. If a person has symptoms of anemia, they should speak to their repair, who can recommend the best discussion .


People can treat mild dehydration by drinking more body of water. If they have severe dehydration, they may need to receive intravenous fluids in a hospital .

Underactive thyroid

It is possible to treat an hypoactive thyroid with a man-made human body of the T4 hormone that a healthy thyroid produces .

Lung disease

There are respective treatments available for this condition. The best one will depend on the type of lung disease that a person has. One type of lung disease is chronic clogging pneumonic disease ( COPD ). Treatments for this may include :

  • stopping smoking
  • medication
  • oxygen treatment
  • non-invasive ventilation
  • surgery


The follow tips can help to prevent peeling nails :

  • avoiding wearing acrylic or gel nails
  • using nail polish remover to take off nail polish
  • wearing rubber gloves when washing dishes or cleaning with chemicals
  • using the fingers rather than the nails to open things or pick them up
  • trimming nails and gently filing them to a rounded shape
  • keeping nails moisturized

Takeaway and when to see a doctor

Peeling nails are broadly treatable at base, but if the nails are besides irritating or shed blood, it is best to visit a repair. People should besides seek aesculapian advice if peeling nails accompany other symptoms of more dangerous conditions .

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Category : Nail tips

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