Nails are a very important and protective part of your body which are made up of layers of keratin. They are responsible for the protection of your toes and fingers. Your skin and hair cells are also made up of keratin and it keeps them from getting damaged.

It is very common for our nails to get damaged i.e. peel, break or split. However, science says that about 27% of the women suffer from the condition of brittle nails which is known as Onychoschizia. It can be an indication towards an underlying health condition.

Here is everything you need to know about the types of brittle nails, why they are getting brittle and how can you make it stop;

Types of Brittle Nails

According to researchers there are two types of brittle nails;

Dead and dry

Dry nails are the result of very low levels of moisture in contact with the nails. They are commonly caused by dehydration and frequent washing of hands and feet.

Soft and lifeless

Soft brittle nails are the result of a high level of moisture in contact. They are commonly caused because of excessive dipping of hands and feet in water, excessive use of detergents and household cleaners etc. they can also be caused by too much use of a nail polish remover.

why do nails become brittle


There are a number of other causes which contribute to a person having soft or dry brittle nails, a few of these causes are as follows;


Hypothyroidism is a health condition in which our body makes too less amount of thyroid hormones. Low levels of these hormones can cause hair loss, fatigue, constipation, headaches, depression and weight gain etc. this condition can be cured with prescribed synthetic thyroid hormones.


When people age, all of their body parts age with them. In older age toe nails get harder and thicker while the fingernails become more delicate, brittle and thinner.

Iron deficiency

Iron deficiency is a factor which leads towards a number of health problems. It happens when body does not get its required levels of iron intake. This leads to the low levels of red blood cell production. Iron deficiency can cause several problems in your body. Supplements are prescribed by the doctors to treat iron deficiency.

why do nails become brittle

Raynaud’s Syndrome

Raynaud’s Syndrome is a disorder in which the patient develops discoloration of fingers and longitudinal ridges on nails and a brittle texture due to lack of blood circulation. This disease is very painful for the patient.


Age is an irreversible factor in most cases the changes it brings about to your body, are not alterable and so is the case with the age-related brittle nails. However you can always take care of them in many ways to avoid the brittle texture, peeling and cracking.

Use a moisturizer which suits you

Lanolin rich nail conditioners are really good for smoothing out the brittle texture of nails. Look for other moisturizing hand lotions which include lanolin and alpha-hydroxy acids. Always moisturize your hands and feet after every wash making sure that you are directly moisturizing your nails as well. Do not forget to moisturize before you go to bed.

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Protection and pampering is the key

Whenever you do your household chores always remember to wear your gloves. Gloves will protect your hands and feet from the extreme effects of detergents or household cleaners which you are using. Avoid prolonged exposure to extreme dry and cold weather. Even if you have to, make sure to wear gloves.

Pamper your nails

Always use a fine emery board to file your nails. This can help shed the rough edges before they can get stuck in something and crack. Keep the length short to avoid any sort of damage. Longer nails can absorb harmful chemicals more easily as compared to short length ones.

If you feel like your nails are getting very thin by the day and break very easily, you should probably consult your doctor. These signs in some cases can be a sign of an underlying condition which should be checked in time.

Posted by:Aqeela Nawaz Malik

A free soul.

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