Toenail Discoloration Problems
If you are experiencing toenail discoloration it may be a reason for concern. Most of the time, this is because of an injury to the toenail. The nail bed is extremely sensitive and can become bruised and swollen very easily. Usually this type of discoloration goes away within a few weeks unless the nail was bruised too much. In this case, the old toenail may eventually fall off to make room for a new one. This type of toenail discoloration is not considered dangerous but there are a few more reasons for this condition that can require medical attention.
Bacteria and fungi infections are seen in the nails. Microscopic plants can live and grow on the dead cells of the body and this includes hair and nails. This can cause toenail discoloration. The toenail can turn a yellow to green color and they can also become frail and they can easily break off or chip. There are many different types of these bacteria or fungal related conditions.
If the seal on the toenail is raised pr broken it can let bacteria and fungi enter the nail bed area. This is called paronychia. The nail can be a dark red color and the entire toe can become swollen. This condition is very painful and a doctor may have to prescribe medication for the infected area. This infection is highly contagious and it can become worse if a person constantly has their hands in water. Anyone suffering with paronychia should avoid coming in contact with other people until the condition has been fully cured.
Pseudomonas is another type of bacterial infection that can cause toenail discoloration. This can occur when artificial nails are placed over the top of the nail. The symptoms of this condition are a green to black nail bed and a chipped or frail nail. This type of infection thrives in moist areas and lives off of dead tissues and bacteria. The body naturally tries to fight this infection and the artificial nail cover can become separated from the rest of the nail.
A yeast or fungal infection can actually make the nail so frail that it eventually falls off. This is called an onychomycosis. It can change the texture of the nail bed and the nail can turn a yellow to white color. If this condition goes untreated, organic debris can accumulate under the nail bed. Eventually the nail will dislocate itself and crumble off.
Ring worm is an infection that can change the look of a nail. The nail can become frail and it can chip easily. The nail can be white and spotty on top and underneath a green to black color can be seen. If left untreated, the nail will become thick and it can also become deformed.
Onychorrhexis makes nails brittle and they can easily spilt and tear at the top of the nail. This condition is thought to be hereditary, which means that if other people in your family have had this problem, you can also suffer with it. The people who are at risk for getting onychorrhexis usually work with strong chemicals that can eliminate moisture in the nails. In some cases, this is a symptom of another disease within the body. But most of the time this condition can be cured by hydrating the nail plate.
Severe ingrown toenails can also cause toenail discoloration. The sides of the toenail turn inward and the nail becomes imbedded in the toe. The symptoms are dark green nails, swelling and extreme pain. During this process the nail can also become infected causing further problems. The only way to fully cure a severe ingrown toenail is to have surgery to cut out the imbedded nail end.