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How does cold weather affect the nails?

March 18, 2009

How does cold weather affect the nails?

Answer

The nail grows slower in cold weather and faster in warm weather because circulation is slower in the cold weather, causing a growth slow down. If there is damage to the matrix, the nail may be deformed (thickened, brittle, etc.). You will see the nail growing out from the matrix and may see some of these changes as the nail grows. I don’t believe cold weather alone will damage the matrix and cause the nail to be brittle, unless there is some other health condition or trauma that may have affected the matrix along with the cold weather. — Dr. Dennis Arnold is head of the International Pedicure Association.

What’s the cause of the pinkish-red oval area on the pad of my client’s toes?

I have a client who has a recurring problem with her fourth toes during the winter months. Both of her “ring finger” toes develop a pinkish-red oval area on the pad. Then a month later, when I see her again, the skin has become dry and hard like a callus, with the layers of skin peeling away to reveal a deeper, dark epicenter.  It’s extremely painful for her and, needless to say, we do not touch it. But it clears up in the summer when she’s wearing open-toed sandals, so I suspect it has to be due to the boots she wears in the winter. Plus she never puts lotion on her feet or uses a foot file in between visits. What do you think causes this?

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What are the big white spots on my natural-nail client’s nails?

I have a client who has been with me for about two years. She used to wear acrylic nails but has been a natural nail client for eight months or so. She has these white spots on her nails — big spots that are dry, but not flaky, right in the middle of the nail. I did try to buff them lightly but they do not come off or grow off. I had a new client come in last week who had the same on her toenails. She said it started after she had a pedicure done at another salon. Can you help?

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