Fingernails

How often do you look down to study your fingernails? It might be smart to pay a bit more attention to the health of your fingernails, as sometimes strange marks can appear that may be cancerous.

For those who regularly attend manicure sessions, your manicurist can tell a lot about your health, and it is wise to speak to them once in a while about the state of your nails so you can avoid serious health issues. Oftentimes, cancers like melanoma (a common form of skin cancer) can cause dark lines on the nails that can be confused with a calcium deficiency, blood blisters, or strange hereditary marks.

Recently, a manicurist encountered a client whose nail had a dark line on it. “She had a straight dark vertical stripe down her nail. She said as soon as she sat down, ‘I need a color dark enough to cover this stripe.’ I did not want to frighten her, but I told her she needed to see her doctor immediately!” said manicurist Jean Skinner in a Facebook post shared by Reader’s Digest. Now Skinner is using the photograph of the nail to raise awareness of the condition.

Sometimes changes in the nails are not cause for concern; however, it doesn’t hurt to be on the safe side and take into consideration any odd changes that may indicate a serious disease. If you notice a dark mark under your fingernail that you don’t know the cause of, bring the spot to the attention of your doctor immediately.