Q&A

What effect does cold weather have on the nails?

Q.

What effect does cold weather have on the nails?

A.

Cold weather can wreak havoc on your client's hands and nails. Special care must be taken during the winter months to combat the nail-related problems associated with this time of year. Some of the nail conditions you are likely to see include brittle nail syndrome, bacterial infections, and Raynaud's Phenomenon. (For information on brittle nail syndrome, fungal infections, and bacterial infections, please see the individual questions.) One consequence of cold weather is decreased circulation to the fingers and toes, which can result in Raynaud's Phenomenon. It may cause fingers to become discolored, alternating from red to white to blue and is often painful. Wearing gloves is recommended for people who have this condition because gloves keep the fingers warmer, thus improving blood flow to the nail area. If the symptoms become severe, do not improve, or continue to get worse, then your client should see a dermatologist.

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