Friday, May 2, 2014

The nail issue is starting to trouble me

I'm not normally a narcissistic person, but there are times I get a little fixated on an aspect of my health that has seemed to hit a road bump.  Like my fingernails:
 Your finger nails, hair, and skin  can tell you a lot about the state of your health.  Mine are saying that something is amiss!
 Since maybe around Christmas I noticed they were peeling, very thin, and easily breaking.  Sometimes well past the quick.  I thought it was the cold, dry weather, so I started using a lot more hand cream. My cuticles have never been lovely, but I could trim them with a little nail tool and rub lotion into them and all was well.  I had even been able to maintain a length on most of them, and I go without nail polish, since you can't wear chipped polish in the medical field and I don't have time or energy to do them nightly.
This is not really a small thing for me - I use my nails like tools.  And it's painful for them to break down to the skin.  So I started using a specific hand and nail lotion, and started painting them with Vitamin E oil for nails nightly.
I even bought some of the stuff you paint on them which has keratin and collagen and basically seals the edges of the peeling nail so it can grow out.  And I regularly take the following each day: Levothyroxine, Centrum Silver multivitamin, chewable calcium supplement, AZO Cranberry, fish oil, probiotic, biotin. So I am already being proactive about my general health.  I even use a little covered container that helps me see what I still have left to take during the day - this is helpful for days I work, especially.
 I asked my sister about it since we are close in age and both have hypothyroidism, and she said I should have a well-woman check.  But I am not due for one until September, and other than having slightly elevated cholesterol, I am in good health.  She also said it could also be anemia (I'm not anemic), a protein deficiency (no, I eat protein daily), intrinsic aging (well, but this has come on suddenly and as the photos show I still have half moons and no ridges), or need to have my thyroid checked (did that, it's fine and I feel fine).  She suggests I increase protein and iron, but doing that if you are post-menopausal and in good health is a no-no.  Also to drink more fluids and get enough rest - but I do both of those, and my nails are not brittle.  Exercise she also recommended - but isn't that a catch-all suggestion for overall health?  I have a fairly active job, but I could add in some walking on my off days.
I think it may also be related to the hand foam we are using at work, since my toenails are not affected this way.  So here's what I am going to do based on my own research:
Use gloves or soap and water at work instead of hand foam.  Take additional biotin (since I was only taking one and I can have up to 5 a day). Keep my nails trimmed very short. Rub nail lotion into the nail beds and cuticles each night.  Paint on the nail protector every other day.  Whatcha think?  Got any other suggestions for me?





1 comment:

Angie@Echoes of Laughter said...

I think you are on to something with the work thing because you are right..if it was a hormonal/nutritional issue, you should see it with your feet as well! Hope this is the solution! Angie xo

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