Why are there white spots on the nails?

I remove my nail polish only to find something strange: Why are there white spots on the nails?

I'm sure you've seen a little white spot on one of your nails before. Maybe there were several on different fingers. Someone has probably told you that it is due to a lack of calcium and you have sat down to eat yogurt and dairy to compensate. Any luck...?

In most cases, little white spots (especially if they are shaped like little dots) are called leukonychia punctata, which means "white spots on the nail". But no need to fret over it, in most cases it is entirely harmless, many adults may develop these spots and it is no sign of a serious health condition. 

Why are there white spots on the nails? // Photo: Shutterstock

We have always attributed these spots to a lack of calcium. But this has not been proven and it is now considered that the spots are nothing more than secondary marks to small bumps on the nail, specifically in the matrix, which is precisely where the nail begins to form.

It may be due to manipulation of the nail during a manicure.

In most cases it will not even be possible to remember when you hit a nail; it may be due to manipulation of the nail during a manicure, some trauma in people who bite their nails, etc.

Leukonychia punctata do not need any treatment

As the nail grows, the spots will move with it to the outside without the need for any intervention. No nail polish or cosmetic product will make those spots disappear.

No nail polish or cosmetic product will make those spots disappear.

They can, however, be attributed to more serious conditions such as an allergic reaction to some nail product, fungi -especially on your toenails-, mineral deficiency -zinc-, or psoriasis. While these symptoms exist, they are very rare, so be sure to consult a doctor if you notice persistent white spots on your nails. You won't probably need to visit a doctor, but if you are anxious, the treatments are very effective and short-term.

On the other hand, if you think that they are due to small trauma, just be more careful to avoid injury or stop the behavior that you suspect is responsible for the damage and in the meantime you can cover the spots with some nail polish!

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Cathy Mason

Cathy has spent most of her professional life discovering homemade beauty remedies, old and new. Using her extensive knowledge of natural ingredients, Cathy will provide expert advice on how to tackle everyday skincare problems with straightforward natural lotions and potions. + info

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