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Healthy fingernails are strong, shiny and translucent pink in color. In case there is any kind of fingernail discoloration (either partial or total) one may become worried. In some cases fingernails discoloration occurs due to frequent use of nail polish or the problem may be associated with some underlying medical conditions.

Causes of Discolored Fingernails

In many cases fingernail discoloration can point to lack of certain nutrients (vitamins) in one's diet. A simple change in diet or intake of vitamin supplements may fix the problem. But prior to opting for any kind of vitamin supplement one should consult a doctor.

Fingernail discoloration may also be related to yellow nail syndrome. This is rather rare, inherited medical condition which typically features with thickening of the fingernails. The fingernails become yellow to yellowish-green (hence the mane of the syndrome). They tend to grow at a very slow rate and are susceptible to separation from the nail beds.

Discoloration of fingernails may be one of the characteristics of certain medical conditions, such as, a bad lung condition, kidney disorders, diabetes etc.

Fingernail infection is commonly accompanied with nail discoloration. The infected nails lose their natural pink color and become yellowish or even green. If the infection is caused by a fingernail fungus Tricophyton rubrum discoloration is accompanied by unpleasant odor of the infected nails. The fingernail infection can apart from fungi be infected with bacteria (one of them is Pseudomonas).

And finally, fingernail discoloration is common in women who frequently use nail polish.

Treatment for Discolored Fingernails

It is essential to identify the underlying cause of fingernail discoloration. Only this way a proper treatment can be chosen. Women who use nail polish frequently can regain the natural appearance of their fingernails if they stop using these cosmetic products. After certain period of time the fingernails will restore their natural color and healthy appearance.

In case fingernails discoloration results from nutrient deficiencies, the problem can be successfully solved with proper diet and vitamin or mineral supplements.

All nail infections require proper treatment with antifungal drugs or antibiotics. These medications will eradicate infective agents and restore the natural and healthy appearance of fingernails.

In people who are suffering from chronic illnesses the change in fingernail color may last for longer period of time and it may eventually be restored once the illnesses is brought under control.

It is important to remember that any change in the appearance of fingernails must be taken seriously especially if it lasts longer and simply cannot be brought under control with cosmetic products or some home remedies.

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