Taking proper care of all your body parts should always be prioritized. If you don’t take care of the smallest body parts now, they might become a major cause of concern shortly. One such ignored body part is our toenails. Without proper care, the toenails can become a house for chronic infections, serious health problems, and a great source of pain.
A lot of times a person’s toenails can signal their overall health condition. For instance, a toenail fungal infection is a reason behind thickened yellow toenails. It can also signify the presence of lymphedema, psoriasis, lung problems, etc. In the same way, a brown spot under toenails can also occur due to several reasons.
Naturally, our toenails are white. Some low-quality nail polishes can cause casual discolorations. Apart from this reason, nutritional deficiencies, trauma, infection, etc. are some regular considerable reasons. But mostly, a black spot under the toenail can occur due to various reasons that are self-resolvable.
A proper toenail healthcare schedule can be followed with consistent care. But if the dark spot under the toenail does not vanish on its own, the reason could be very serious. And you need to get your toenail with the dark spot get checked in time.
What causes a Brown spot under toenail?
A dark spot under the toenail can be a result of the following causes:
- An Underlying Medical Condition: Some serious health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, anemia, or kidney disease can be a major cause of concern for the brown spot on the toenail.
- Melanoma: Melanoma is one of the most serious skin cancer conditions to date. A brown mark under a toenail or a dark misshapen spot anywhere on the skin can occur due to this condition. The spot can easily occur underneath nail beds too.
- Fungal Infections: Usually, fungal nail infections are categorized with white or yellow-colored nails. But sometimes, black toenails can also occur due to the debris being buildup under the nails. Fungal infections mostly thrive in areas that are moist and warm. And our toenails are quite vulnerable to such situations.
- Trauma: Toenail injuries might cause the blood vessels under a toenail to break off. This causes bleeding in the toenail usually visible as a brown mark or a dark spot under the toenail. Avoid wearing poor-fitting shoes as they can also cause trauma to the toenail.
How common is the dark spot under the toenail?
A dark mark under the toenail is quite a rare condition. Typically, this dark spot under the toenail occurs on the thumb. The dark spot is just an early stage of the underlying condition if any. Change in the shape, color, or size of the black spot under the toenail is yet another indication to visit the doctor soon. This uncommon skin condition occurs in several racial groups. Ignoring or leaving the dark spot untreated can result in a deadly condition in the future.
Which doctor should I visit to get my dark spot under toenail treated?
If you have noticed a black spot under the toenail, then it doesn’t necessitate the need to visit a doctor. The type of medical treatment will mostly depend on the initial cause of its occurrence. If you have already anticipated the cause from the above-mentioned ones, you can make out what will be the best decision. But if you cannot make out the cause, then visiting a doctor will be the best choice.
You can visit a dermatologist or a podiatrist to treat your dark spot under the toenail. He will accurately suspect the initial cause of occurrence of the dark spot, introduce you to any underlying health concerns, and guide you towards a primary doctor who will directly treat the root cause of it.
If your dark spot has been there for quite a while now, don’t worry! Getting in touch with a genuine doctor can save you.
Can the dark spot under your toenail cause any further complications?
An untreated dark mark under the toenail can spread further. It tends to spread throughout your feet and even to the other body parts depending upon the graveness of the underlying health condition of any. It brings along symptoms of permanent nail damage as well.
A lot of times people mistake a dark spot due to melanoma with a traumatized toenail condition. It is high time to visit the doctor in case the black spot under the toenail does not come out despite the toenail growing out.
How to treat a dark spot under toenail fast?
Most toenail fungal infections are treatable at home as soon as they come into notice. Various over-the-counter ointments, nail creams, foot creams, nail oils, nail overlays, etc. are available to maintain overall nail health. Only patients dealing with some severe conditions may require prescription medication for proper, fast and effective treatment progress.
If the brown spot on the toenail occurs due to an injury, the reason for its appearance is mainly due to broken blood vessels under the nail bed. The dark spot usually disappears on its own. No separate treatment is necessary. Nail oils that consist of necessary vitamins and minerals can be used to improve overall nail health in the long run.
A black spot under the toenail caused due to trauma is also self-resolvable. But in the rare case that the dark spot does not disappear as the toenail grows out, then it is best to visit the doctor to start treatment for the underlying cause as soon as possible.
Toenail discoloration is pretty common amongst diabetics. Follow proper medication offered by your doctor to ward off such signs and symptoms before they get out of your hands.
Three easy ways to treat a dark spot under the toenail are:
- Look for the root cause of the dark spot under the toenail
- Use the RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation) protocol to treat the toenail at home if the underlying cause is injury or trauma
- Take over-the-counter pain relievers if the need arises
A minor dark spot under the toenail will go away with tender care.
How to hide a dark spot under toenail for the time being?
We always want to look presentable. Well-maintained hands and feet also form part of a pleasing personality. It makes us look hygienic and helps in forming lasting first impressions. A dark spot under the toenail can ruin the beauty of your feet. Although it is part of our body, a natural phenomenon. But who wants to be judged for a toenail, right?
If you want a solution to hide the black spot on your toenail for the time being, then you can do so by investing in best quality nail paints that are free from harsh chemicals. Nude nail paints with good coverage and double-coat can help you hide the dark spot till the time it doesn’t go away for real. Nail dust collectors are also gaining popularity. Nowadays, nail oils also come packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. A proper nail health routine should be followed consistently to improve overall nail health.
Note: Avoid getting fake acrylic toenails or gel nails as they might worsen the current situation of the toenail if the underlying condition is due to trauma or injury. Let the toenail heal first and then go for artificial nail enhancements and applications.
How to maintain healthy toenails?
Pampering your toenails is key to maintain healthy feet. Especially if you’re diabetic or have any serious underlying medical condition. Add these simple tips to your daily feet or nail care routine to have beautiful and healthy feet without having to visit the salon for a pedicure.
- Cut Your Toenails regularly: Having short toenails will help them stay clean and at bay from any kind of infections, especially fungal infections
- Use a Quality Toenail Clipper: Toenail clippers are meant for toenail cutting specifically. Their unique design helps you cut the toenails in the perfect shape without any chances of injury
- Wash Your Feet Consistently: Try and wash your feet as soon as they get dirty and whenever possible. Such a habit will help your feet stay at bay from warts and fungus any day. Don’t be lazy with this tip! Wash your feet often.
- Cut the Toenails Straight and Then Shape: Prefer cutting your toenails in a straight shape and not the rounded one. You can then file the nails in a rounded shape. This trick helps avoid any jagged edges. Jagged edges are a major cause of ingrown nails.
- Handle the Cuticles with Care: Cuticles are basically the protective layer on your nail that keeps any infection at a healthy distance from your nail bed. Don’t unnecessarily push, poke, or cut your cuticles to cause a mess.
- Eat a Healthy Diet: Develop a habit of eating a variety of food. Eat vegetables, fruits, and a protein-rich diet to grow strong and healthy nails that can resist the test of time.
- Use Good Quality Nail Care Products: Prefer using good quality and high-end brands on your nails to avoid nail damage. Nail oils, nail polishes, and other nail care products should be made of natural, mild, and harm-free materials. Don’t apply just anything! Your skin is permeable.
These simple preventative tips can go a long way in reducing any toe or foot problems. If you have any further concerns, visit your doctor right away!