Health Tips

Got A Nail Infection? Don’t Stress!

Here's what you need to know about the most common nail maladies

By The Weekly | March 30, 2018

Your nails are an important part of your presentation to the world.

Fingernails are also important for fine touch and handwork. We spoke to Professor Kerryn Phelps, a GP at Australian Medical Associates, to find out how you should take better care of your nails.


Nail Injury
Toenails, especially, are prone to repeated injury over the years from footwear, sporting injuries and changes due to arthritis.


Fungal Infection
A fungal infection in a nail can appear as yellow discolouring, lifting of the end of the nail from the nail bed, thickening of the nail.


Paronychia (Inflammation of the skin around a nail)
You might notice the appearance of a red, swollen, painful area at the age of the nail. You might also see a yellow rim of pus under the surface. We see this in nail biters and people who fidget by pulling at the skin around their nails.


Psoriasis is a common skin condition. Up to 50 per cent of psoriasis sufferers have their fingernails and toenails affected.


Nail Biting
Nail biting is common in children but it may persist into adulthood, when the habit is much harder to break. Apart from being unhygienic, it can damage the skin around your nails.

Nail biting can be associated with anxiety or obsessive-compulsive personality.


Brittle Nails
Brittle nails are a reasonably common problem, primarily of cosmetic significance.

There may be ridging along the length of the nail and splitting of the end of the nail.


Dark Discolouration
Trauma can cause a bleed under the nail, causing black staining in a section of the nail bed.


This article first appeared on

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