Nail Care

What Causes White Toenails?

White toenails are mostly caused due to nail fungus or nail trauma. In rare cases it can be caused due to serious health conditions. Pressure on the toenail from a pedicure can result in white spots on the nail. However, these spots grow along with the nail and disappear. Treatment of white toenail depends upon the reason behind the discoloration.

What Causes White Toenails?

Nail Fungus

Nail fungus invades the toe through cuts and the space between the nail and the nail bed. It thrives in warm and moist conditions and results in white discoloration. There can be a thickening of the toenail due the debris under the nail plate. Crumbling and roughening of the nail surface is also seen. The white toenail can gradually turn to brown or yellow color. This white discoloration is caused due to the fungus Tinea Mentagrophytes.

Nail Trauma

A toenail injury in the form of hitting the toenail to a surface can result in white spots on the nail. Excessive pressure while manicuring can also result in white spots on the toenail. This white spot gradually goes away as the nail grows.

White toenails, in most cases, are caused due to fungus or nail trauma. For nail fungus, your doctor may prescribe you an anti-fungal medication. White spot due to injury goes away and there is no need for treatment.

In rare cases, liver diseases, pneumonia, hypoalbuminemia, arsenic poisoning and renal failure can cause white toenails. So, if your white toenails do not resolve by themselves, do consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.

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