Nail Care

Types of Toenail Ridges

Toenail ridges – the lines which run across or along the toenails are a cause of concern for many people. One common reason for toenail ridges is an injury to the nail. When the area near the nail bed is injured, a ridge is formed. Slowly the ridge emerges out, but it goes away as the nail grows.

Vertical Toenail Ridges:

Vertical toenail ridges start from the nail base and extend to the nail tip. Most of these ridges appear due to aging. They appear in middle age and they may increase with age. Vertical toenail ridges are usually not associated with any medical condition.

To get rid of vertical toenail ridges, you can use a nail file to smooth them out.Vertical toenail ridges usually grow out and they do not always indicate a medical problem. Consult your doctor to know if there is any medical reason behind your nail ridges.

Horizontal Toenail Ridges:

Horizontal toenail ridges run across the nails, from one side of the nail to another side. These ridges can be caused due to an underlying illness, malnutrition, renal problem or toenail injury. Horizontal ridges can also be an indication of interrupted growth of the nails due to malnutrition or nail trauma.

Beau’s lines are a form of horizontal ridges, which have deep grooves and dark appearance. Beau’s lines can be formed due to:

  • Malnutrition
  • Metabolic disease such as chemotherapy
  • Respiratory disease
  • Nail trauma
  • Chemotherapy
  • Poisoning

If your toenail ridges are associated with yellow or brown discoloration, it may be caused due to nail fungus or a sign of something serious. In such cases, consult your doctor for diagnosis and treatment.

4 responses to Types of Toenail Ridges

  1. Thanks for sharing. What a palersue to read!

  2. I have a deep vertical indentation on my right big toe that starts at the nail bed that has a skin tag that protrudes from nail bed causing the indentation on my nail. What is that and what can I do, without having to go to the doctor or foot specialist, at home to remove this skin tag?

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