What do white spots on nails mean?


White spots on the nails are called in medical language - leukochonia. Leukocytosis often occurs in the form of white dots or streaks, does not pose a significant threat to the organism and is only a cosmetic defect. In some cases, it may be a sign of a serious pathology that is hidden in the body.
What is leukocytosis?
A healthy undamaged nail has a translucent structure and adheres tightly to the skin (lodge) under the nail. Occasionally, an air bubble enters between the nail plate and the nail plate, causing the nail to separate from the skin. The result is spots of dotted or linear shape. But the question arises, where do these air bubbles come from? The reasons may be:
1. Trauma (injuries)
In this case, damage to the nail plate or its growing part (matrix) is observed. The most common causes of injuries are: tingling of the nails, hitting the table with the fingers when nervous, constant manicure, accidental and strong impact of a hard object on the nails (for example, with a hammer), wearing tight shoes (cause leukochonia on the feet).
Leukochonia under the influence of trauma is easy to detect. They are usually one or more round-shaped white spots that are unevenly placed on the nail. As the nail grows, it is possible to observe their slippage and gradual disappearance.
2. Poisoning or taking certain medications
For example:
• Taking sulfanilamide drugs. For example, synthetic drugs used to treat sepsis, bacterial infections of the skin and urinary tract
• Chemotherapy used in the treatment of tumors.
• Poisoning of heavy metals with lead or arsenic.
In these cases, the leukochonia is in the form of a long elongated white, located perpendicular to the growing line of the nail. This is why they are called linear (or transverse) leukochonia.
3. Systemic changes in the body
Disorders in the functioning of certain organs and tissues in the body can manifest themselves in the form of linear leukochonia on the nails. These include the following diseases:
• Iron deficiency anemia;
• Lack of zinc and calcium;
• Kidney disease;
• Heart failure;
• Liver disease, including cirrhosis;
• Hyperthyroidism - increased activity of the pancreas;
• Disorders of gastrointestinal protein absorption;
• Skin diseases: psoriasis or eczema;
• Early stages of nail fungal disease.
How to get rid of white spots on nails?
In most cases, it is enough to wait - the nail grows and the spots gradually disappear by themselves. However, in transverse leukemia, it is necessary to see a therapist, especially in the regular appearance of linear spots and observed in the nails of several fingers.
The doctor will determine the true cause of the leukemia and treat it. In the case of systemic disorders - the underlying disease is treated, at the expense of drugs - an alternative drug to the drug taken is selected.
It is not possible to get rid of white spots in a day or two, you have to wait a few weeks or months and wait for the nail plate to renew naturally.
For information: Nails grow an average of 1,5-3 mm per month. In healthy people, complete renewal of nails takes place manually - up to 3-4 months, and on the feet - up to 9-12 months.

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