Toenails may appear to have little purpose, but they play an important role. Made from keratin — the same protein that makes up your skin and hair — your nails protect the soft tissue beneath them and keep the tips of your toes safe.

    Occasionally, due to trauma, infection, or other scenarios, you might lose a toenail (or fingernail). The good news is that nails grow back. It can take up to 6 months for fingernails to grow back and up to 18 months for toenails to regrow.

    Here’s a look at the stages of nail regrowth , including next steps if you lose a nail.

    Both toenails and fingernails grow slowly, with toenails taking longer to regrow.

    On average, it can take up to 18 months for a toenail to completely regrow, and about 4 to 6 months for a fingernail to grow back.

    The reason fingernails grow faster isn’t fully understood. But according to one theory, fingers receive more blood flow because they’re used more often, which likely contributes to faster fingernail growth.

    Although it can take months for nails to grow back, the rate of regrowth can be faster or slower depending on the scenario, as shown in the following table.

    After trauma

    Stubbing your toe or dropping an item on your foot can damage your toenail. Depending on the severity of the injury, your toenail might turn black and fall off.

    Toenail regrowth tends to be slower after an injury or trauma, taking anywhere from 6 months to 2 years.

    After fungus

    Toenails are susceptible to fungal infections because fungus thrives in warm, wet environments. Shoes and socks provide the perfect condition for fungus to grow.

    Toenail fungus is contagious, too, so it can transfer to your nail after visiting a nail salon or if you walk barefoot in a locker room.

    Symptoms of toenail fungus include yellow or dark discoloration, brittleness, and thickening of nails. Over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription products can treat nail fungus, but it can take 12 to 18 months for the fungus to grow out.

    After medical removal

    Surgical removal of a nail might be necessary with severe fungus, recurrent ingrown toenails, or when a large section of a nail is diseased or damaged. After medical removal, it can take up to 18 months for a nail to fully regrow.

    After psoriasis

    Psoriasis is a condition that causes itchy, scaly patches on your skin — it can also affect your nails. Symptoms of nail psoriasis include:

    • nail pits
    • discoloration
    • blood under your nails
    • nail separation

    Medications used to treat psoriasis (corticosteroids and biologics) and topical steroids might improve nail appearance. It can take 6 months or longer for your nail to grow out.

    Other factors that affect regrowth

    Other factors affect the speed of regrowth. For example, nails tend to grow slower in older adults and in colder climates. Nails grow faster in the summer.

    In addition, nails on a dominant hand tend to grow faster than nails on a nondominant hand.

    It’s also been noted that trauma or an injury increases the rate of regrowth, due to an increase of blood flow to the injured area.

    Overall health also has an impact on growth. Nail growth can slow down if you’re sick or malnourished. And since hormones affect regrowth, your toenails and fingernails might grow quicker during pregnancy.

    Nails grow from underneath your skin at the matrix , which is the root of your nail.

    New cells form in the matrix. And as these new cells grow, older cells move up and push through your skin. The cells on the surface die and harden, turning into nails.

    Here are tips for how to care for a damaged nail, and speed the healing process:

    • Apply a cold compress for up to 20 minutes to reduce swelling and inflammation. Wrap a cloth over an ice pack before applying to your skin.
    • Keep your nail elevated. This reduces blood flow to the injury, which can decrease swelling and bruising.
    • Take biotin supplements . These supplements promote cell growth, and help your body metabolize protein-building amino acids, thus contributing to faster nail growth.
    • Keep the wound dry and covered. The skin underneath your toenail is sensitive. Clean and dry your nail bed daily and cover it with a bandage. Change the bandage once a day.
    • Apply antibiotic ointment to the damaged nail to prevent infection.
    • If it hasn’t already, try to keep the nail in place until it is ready to fall off. This provides extra protection to the nail bed underneath.

    Nail trauma doesn’t always require medical attention. OTC anti-inflammatory drugs can relieve mild pain, and the nail will eventually grow back.

    You should call a doctor for hard-to-treat nail fungus, nail psoriasis, and other symptoms of an infection. Symptoms of infection include:

    • pain
    • discoloration
    • thickening of your nail
    • oozing
    • change in shape

    Toenails and fingernails protect your skin, but you might lose a nail due to trauma, fungus, or other reasons.

    Most nails grow back, although the rate of regrowth can vary from person to person. It might take several months or a year to grow back.

    If you’ve recently lost a nail, keep it clean, dry, protected, and most importantly, be patient.

    Can toes regrow?
    No, biologically your feet can't start growing again. The way your bones grow is through areas called growth plates that all young growing bones have within them. Growth plates are made of cartilage and are where your body adds new bone, lengthening your bones. more
    What is more important pinky toe or big toe?
    It probably is no surprise that your big toe is the most important when maintaining balance and bearing body weight. Your big toes bear just about 2 times the amount of weight as all your other toes combined! It still should not shock you that the pinky toes are the least important. more
    Why is there a gap between my big toe and second toe?
    Hallux varus is a deformity in the big toe joint that causes the big toe to angle away from the foot. This creates a gap between the first and second toes, which is why this condition is also called sandal gap. more
    Why is my third toe longer than my second toe?
    Brachymetatarsia is a condition where one of your metatarsals has a significantly shortened bone, causing that toe to be much shorter than the other four. The fourth metatarsal, located next to your little toe, is the most common toe to be affected. more
    What does it mean when your third toe is longer than your second toe?
    Morton's toe is the condition of having a first metatarsal which is short in relation to the second metatarsal (see diagram). It is a type of brachymetatarsia. A Morton's toe that is so severe the second and third toe appear longer than the first toe. more
    Is it better to walk heel to toe or toe to heel?
    The toe-heel pattern expends greater energy because it puts undue stress on the extensor muscles of the ankle, knee and hip. This finding suggests that the heel-toe pattern is the correct way to walk on your feet when you want to protect your muscles. more
    What does it mean when your second toe is bigger than your big toe?
    A Morton's toe otherwise called Morton's foot or Greek foot or Royal toe is characterized by a longer second toe. This is because the first metatarsal, behind the big toe, is short compared to the second metatarsal, next to it. more
    Should you walk toe to heel or heel to toe?
    The toe-heel pattern expends greater energy because it puts undue stress on the extensor muscles of the ankle, knee and hip. This finding suggests that the heel-toe pattern is the correct way to walk on your feet when you want to protect your muscles. more
    Why is my big toe smaller than my second toe?
    They're caused by an uneven distribution of pressure on the ball of your foot. This pressure imbalance occurs because the metatarsal (ball of the foot) beneath your second toe falls lower than the big toe metatarsal, which creates a deeper space between the first and second toe than between the subsequent toes. more
    What does it mean if your 2nd toe is bigger than your big toe?
    A Morton's toe otherwise called Morton's foot or Greek foot or Royal toe is characterized by a longer second toe. This is because the first metatarsal, behind the big toe, is short compared to the second metatarsal, next to it. more
    What does it mean when your middle toe is bigger than your big toe?
    They're caused by an uneven distribution of pressure on the ball of your foot. This pressure imbalance occurs because the metatarsal (ball of the foot) beneath your second toe falls lower than the big toe metatarsal, which creates a deeper space between the first and second toe than between the subsequent toes. more

    Source: www.healthline.com

    You may be interested in...

    What oil is used at McDonald's?

    What are the 3 categories of life skills?

    Who won best actor for Lord of the Rings?

    Do Birman cats talk a lot?

    Is it hard to get accepted for car finance?

    Do med students have fun?

    Can a friend invite me to USA?

    Which President went to Harvard Law?

    Who has the most kills in world?

    Who has the best UFC record?

    How do wrestlers hide blades?

    What is a good salary to get married?

    How do I remove my name from Early Warning Services?

    Where do most doctor prefer to steal?

    What happens when you drink cold water first thing in the morning?

    About Privacy Contact
    ©2022 REPOKIT