If you’re pregnant and reading this, you probably know that there will be changes to your nails during pregnancy. The question is, what are those changes?
Well, we’ve got the answer! We’ve compiled our best tips on what to expect, what to do, and how to take care of your nails during pregnancy so that you can be prepared for anything!
What are the changes to your nails during pregnancy
We know that pregnancy can be a time of change, and it’s not just the baby!
Your nails may look a little different as you go through your pregnancy, but don’t worry—they’ll still be there to help you scratch that itch when you need them.
Here are some of the changes you can expect to see in your nails during your pregnancy:
During pregnancy, you’ll notice a lot of changes in your nails. The first thing you may notice is increased sensitivity. This is a normal side effect of pregnancy, and it won’t hurt or damage your nails. However, it’s still important to try to avoid things that could cause pain or discomfort while they’re growing out.
When you’re pregnant, your body works overtime and produces more blood than usual. That extra blood is what makes your nails grow so quickly! And because the extra blood flows through your body, it’s also strengthening them—your nails will be thicker and stronger than ever before.
Image Source: Pexels
Your nails may become brittle or crack easily during pregnancy. This is because your body produces more hormones that cause calcium to be pulled out of your nails, making them softer and more likely to break.
It’s important to ensure that you get enough calcium in your diet to help prevent further damage to these already-fragile nails.
Melanonychia, or dark vertical lines on the nail.
Melanonychia, or dark vertical lines on the nail, is a common side effect of pregnancy. It’s caused by increased estrogen and progesterone in your system, which causes your nail to grow faster than usual.
Reduced nail growth and/or ridges in the length of the nail
Your nail growth will slow down. You may notice ridges developing in the length of your nails, too. This is normal and nothing to worry about—it’s just a result of hormones and other factors during pregnancy.
Is nail changes during pregnancy common
Yes, nail changes are common during pregnancy.
While pregnant women can expect to experience many different physical changes, one that’s not always discussed is the change in nails. During pregnancy, nails tend to become more brittle and splinter easily, especially if you’re doing a lot of manual labor or spending a lot of time outdoors.
You might also see significant changes in the color or texture of your nails. Some women will notice their nails becoming paler than normal, and others will notice that their nails have become darker and more ridged than normal.
What causes the changes in nails during pregnancy
Hormones are to blame!
When you’re pregnant, your body works overtime to grow a human being. And the changes in your nails are just one of the many ways your body responds to all that extra work.
If you’re pregnant and have never had problems with your nails, now might be a good time to start paying attention and getting regular manicures or pedicures! You never know when they might start growing at an alarming rate or developing strange discoloration.
Can you do nails while pregnant
You can do nails while pregnant.
As long as you’re not using any chemicals, it’s perfectly safe to paint your nails while pregnant. Most salons and nail artists don’t allow pregnant women to get their nails done because of the fumes from the nail polish remover and the nail polish itself. The fumes in those products could be harmful to you and your baby if exposed to them for an extended period.
However, if you’re careful about using non-toxic products, there’s nothing to worry about! Safely painting your nails during pregnancy is one of the few ways to relax and enjoy yourself without worrying about harming your unborn child.
Image Source: iStock
What to do about brittle nails during pregnancy
You’re not alone if you’ve noticed that your nails are brittle and peeling.
Many pregnant women experience this during their pregnancies, but it’s not always due to the pregnancy itself.
The most common cause of brittle nails during pregnancy is anemia, which is caused by a lack of iron in the blood. Other causes include dehydration and hormonal changes.
If your nails are peeling or brittle, try these tips:
- Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated throughout the day.
- Eat foods rich in vitamin A and calcium, such as sweet potatoes and leafy greens like spinach.
- Avoid using nail products containing formaldehyde or other chemicals that can harm you and your baby.
What to do about dented nails during pregnancy
The best thing you can do about dented nails during pregnancy is to stop worrying about them. It’s normal to have a little nail damage during pregnancy, but it’s not something you should stress out over.
If you’re looking for ways to prevent your nails from getting dented in the first place, consider wearing rubber gloves when cleaning or doing yard work (you can find them at most drugstores). These gloves will protect your nails from getting damaged by chemicals or sharp objects.
If you notice that one of your nails has a small dent, don’t try to fix it yourself! Instead, see a professional manicurist and ask her or him for advice on how best to treat the problem.
What to do about peeling nails during pregnancy
If you’re experiencing peeling nails during pregnancy, don’t stress! Your nails will grow back—and they’ll be stronger than ever.
The good news is that you can do plenty of things to help your nails get through this phase. Let’s go over them:
- Be gentle with your hands
- Exfoliate gently (don’t scrub!)
- Use a nail strengthener
- Don’t pick at or bite your nails
What to do about nail growth during pregnancy
When you’re pregnant, your body works hard to keep you and your baby healthy. Your nails may be growing more slowly or breaking more easily than usual.
Here’s what to do:
- Keep them trimmed and clean. It’s not unusual for nails to grow more slowly while you’re pregnant—so don’t worry if they seem to take longer than usual to grow out.
- Wear gloves when doing things that might cause your nails to break or chip (like washing dishes). You can also use a buffer tool made for manicures and pedicures to smooth the surface of your nail after trimming it down with clippers, so it’s less likely to snag on something in the future.
- Apply moisturizer regularly. This will help keep your skin from drying out and cuticles from getting too dry and cracking on their own!
Image Source: iStock
What to do about hangnails during pregnancy
Hangnails are common during pregnancy, but they can be uncomfortable and painful. Here are some tips to help you deal with hangnails during pregnancy:
- Keep your nails short.
- Use a moisturizer on your hands daily to prevent dry skin and hangnails.
- Use a nail file instead of scissors or clippers, as these may cause injury to the skin around the nail.
- Wear gloves when doing housework or other activities that might damage your nails or cuticles.
What to do about white spots on your nails during pregnancy
When you’re pregnant, your body goes through many changes. It’s normal for these changes to manifest in some white spots on your nails during pregnancy.
Several factors can cause white spots on your nails:
- You’re dehydrated: Make sure you’re drinking enough water daily to stay hydrated and keep your body functioning at its best.
- You’re overeating salt: Try to reduce salt intake or avoid salty foods altogether. If you have trouble with this, consider buying unsalted snacks at the store to have an alternative when you crave something salty.
- You’re not taking good care of yourself: You might want to consider taking some time off from work or school to rest and take care of yourself while pregnant.
What to do about black spots on your nails during pregnancy
You might notice that the tips of your nails are turning black—and if you’re anything like us, that can be a little scary!
It’s nothing to worry about, though. The pigment in your nails is called melanin, which helps protect your nails from damage and stains. When you’re pregnant, your body produces more melanin than usual—which causes those black spots!
If you want to get rid of them before they fade away naturally, try rubbing lemon juice onto them (make sure to use a glass container, so you don’t stain anything). This will help break down the melanin and make it easier to wear away naturally over time.
What are the risks of manicures during pregnancy
Image Source: iStock
If you’re pregnant, you’re probably wondering if manicures are safe.
While there isn’t much research on the topic, here’s what we do know:
Manicures can be a risk if they involve a nail drill or if they hurt your cuticles. The most common type of manicure involves a nail drill to file down your nails. This is risky because it can cause infection in the nails, which could then spread to the bloodstream and affect your baby. However, this should be fine if you stick to buffing or polishing.
It’s also important to avoid getting cuticles cut too short or removing them entirely during pregnancy. Cuticles help keep bacteria out of your body and protect against infection. So even though you might be tempted to get rid of them because they seem unsightly, this is an unsafe practice during pregnancy.
What are the risks of pedicures during pregnancy
Pedicures are a great way to treat yourself and feel pampered, but they can come with some risks during pregnancy. The main risk is that you might get an infection from one of the instruments used during the pedicure, such as razor or nail clippers. If you have any cuts or abrasions on your feet or legs, bacteria will likely get into those cuts while you’re sitting in the pedicure chair.
Another risk is that your feet will be submerged in water for long periods. This can cause swelling and fluid retention in your lower legs, leading to preeclampsia if left untreated.
The final major risk is that you’ll be exposed to nail polish remover chemicals used during the pedicure process. These chemicals can cause irritation and allergic reactions if not properly applied or if they come into contact with your skin or eyes.
You should avoid getting pedicures if you have any open sores on your feet or legs; if this happens, let your doctor know so they can advise you on how best to treat the situation before it gets worse!
When to call the doctor about your nails during pregnancy
Your nails may start to change during pregnancy, and you may notice that they’re more brittle or swollen than they usually are. If you’re concerned about your nails, talk to your doctor about whether you should be concerned.
If your nails are brittle and cracked, but there’s no pain or infection, it might just be that your body is adjusting to the changes of pregnancy. But sometimes, a cracked nail can be caused by dehydration, so if this seems to be the case for you, ask your doctor about how to keep hydrated during pregnancy.
Nail fungus is also common during pregnancy because of hormonal changes in your body and increased moisture exposure due to frequent bathroom trips. Your doctor can prescribe medication for this condition if necessary.
Call your doctor immediately if you notice any redness or swelling around the cuticle area of your nail—this could indicate an infection or even something worse!
Republished with permission from theAsianparent Singapore
Here at theAsianparent Singapore, it’s important for us to give information that is correct, significant, and timely. But this doesn’t serve as an alternative for medical advice or medical treatment. theAsianparent Singapore is not responsible for those that would choose to drink medicines based on information from our website. If you have any doubts, we recommend consulting your doctor for clearer information.