Brittle or weak nails are typical problems faced by people. Various factors lead to brittle, weak, peeling and chipping off of nails often. Having brittle nails and toenails depict faulty structure of the nail causing it to break or peel off horizontally or vertically.
Brittle nails can affect fingernails as well as toenails. Also, women are more prone to developing them than men. Medically, this condition is known as onychoschizia and mild brittle nail problems may not require any medical treatment. However, if brittle nails are not cared for and looked after appropriately, they may lead to other nail-related problems.
Brittle nails can be caused due to various reasons like trauma to the nails, exposure to cleaning products like detergents and dishwashing liquids, frequent exposure to water and excessive use of harsh chemical nail products like fingernail polish removers and nail polishes.
There are various methods you can adopt as treatment. The most common course of treatment that you could opt for strengthening them is dietary supplementation. Include vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin A, zinc, niacin, calcium, and iron supplements in your diet.
The recommended daily dose of biotin to cure brittle nails is 2.5 mg which can be obtained from the consumption of a glass of soy milk along with barley or corn. Treatment and cure of the medical condition causing brittle nails will also help cure the condition.
Another remedy would be to protect your hand and fingernails by wearing gloves when working with water, harsh chemicals and cleaning agents. This will protect nails from being exposed to the chemicals which make it brittle. Also, restrict the use of nail polish removers and avoid applying nail colors frequently for better nourishment of the nails.
Nail Care Methods
Following are a few simple methods and home remedies that help care for your nails and at the same time prevent wear and tear of nails that are brittle.
- Soak you nails in a bowl of warm almond oil or olive for half an hour daily. Do not wash your fingers but gently massage the oil into the nails. Practice this on a daily basis to cure brittle nails.
- Massage a mixture of honey and lemon to brittle fingernails and toenails and do not wash it off.
- Apply a mixture of a capsule of vitamin E oil and ¼ teaspoon warm olive oil to the strengthen the nails.
- Apply a thick layer of milk cream / petroleum jelly to the hands and fingernails and wear cotton gloves before going out to keep them moisturized.
- Prepare a scrub to harden nails by mixing 1 tsp of honey, 1 tbsp each of olive oil and castor oil and ½ cup shelled ground walnuts. Apply this to the hands, fingernails, toenails and feet and gently scrub them. Rinse off with lukewarm water and repeat twice a week.
Preventing brittle nails is better than indulging in its treatment. Appropriate nail care is essential to prevent your nails from all the different kinds of fingernail problems and to keep them looking healthy and gorgeous.