August 18, 2023

Why Nails Split

The condition of your nails can tell a lot about your hygiene, health and style. Whether they’re thin, cracked or split, nails can clue you in to certain conditions, like nail infections and vitamin deficiencies.

A nail split is when the keratin layers that make up your nail separate, leaving you with a broken or peeling nail. It can happen to anyone and happens for a variety of reasons, including biting, too much moisture, illness and even psoriasis. They can also occur when you’re using nail polish that contains acetone, which can wear away your nails over time. They can appear horizontally or vertically and may have a white free edge, which is more likely to catch on clothes or furniture and get pulled apart.

Nails that are regularly exposed to water, such as those used to wash dishes and cleaning products, are more prone to splitting than other nails. Keeping your nails hydrated is a good way to prevent this, along with wearing gloves whenever you are working with harsh chemicals and trimming them regularly to a healthy length.

A single central ridge or vertical split down the middle of your nail can be caused by injury rather than illness, though it can also indicate a dietary deficiency in iron. Vitamin supplements may help strengthen nails, but you should talk to your doctor before trying anything new.

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