Nails are made of hard keratin tissue that helps protect the underlying tissue of your fingers and toes. They can reveal a lot about your overall health. Healthy nails are uniform in colour and consistency, and smooth, without grooves or pits. Changes in colour and growth rate can indicate various diseases. Nails are prone to problems such as infections and even warts and tumours, so developing good habits can help keep them healthy. Following are a few nail care tips to maintain healthy natural nails:
- Keep nails clean, dry and well-trimmed.
- Cut them straight and rounded at the edges to keep them strong.
- Use a file to smooth off rough edges.
- Ensure your nail salon uses sterilized equipment.
- Avoid biting your fingernails/cuticles (skin at the bottom of the nails).
- Always wear rubber gloves while cleaning or using chemicals.
- Do not remove cuticles as it will make the nail more susceptible to infection.
- After washing your hands, apply moisturizer, even on your nails.
- Do not dig out ingrown nails. They should be treated by your physician.
- Avoid walking bare foot in public areas.
- Antifungal foot powder can be used inside your socks to keep your feet dry.
- Wear clean socks and shoes that fit well, and allow your feet to breathe.
- Use only non-alcoholic nail polish removers.
- Drink plenty of water and eat a balanced diet for healthy nails.
- Use nail polish removers sparingly as they tend to make your nails dry and brittle.