Inflammatory Pain and Nail Fungus: Why Biting Cuticles Can Be Dangerous

Inflammatory Pain and Nail Fungus: Why Biting Cuticles Can Be Dangerous

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Natural protection is lost: biting cuticles is harmful to health
If you bite your cuticles, you risk hurting them. This means that natural protection against bacteria and fungi is lost. This can result in painful inflammation or even a nail fungus.

Important protective function is impaired
Chewing fingernails is common. Stress is usually the reason that the fingers automatically move to the mouth and nibble on them. But sometimes there are also banal causes such as boredom. While chewing is mostly harmless, it can also cause serious problems. This can also damage the cuticles, which have an important protective function.

Protection against bacteria and fungi
The cuticle has a protective function and protects the nail bed from external influences such as chemical substances, fungi and bacteria.

However, if this protection is damaged by nail biting and cuticle biting, such pathogens can penetrate unhindered and cause infection, inflammation or even a nail fungus.

Protection from chemicals in detergents or cleaning agents is then no longer adequate.

In the worst case, the whole nail can change.

According to experts, it should also be borne in mind that saliva has a corrosive effect. So if you keep your fingers in your mouth again and again, you risk attacking the skin.

Do not cut cuticles
To get rid of fingernail chewing, some people rely on bitter varnishes or plasters around their fingertips.

According to experts, however, it is usually more sensible to first find out in which situations the fingers move into the mouth at all - usually when the stress level rises - and then avoid them if possible.

Those who find their cuticles disturbing should not cut them off, according to dermatologists.

Although it does not grow back more if you cut it more often, it is gentler to push back the cuticles. Ideally with a fine wooden swab or damp cotton swab.

It is also recommended to regularly bathe your fingers in lukewarm olive oil. This nourishes the skin around the nail and prevents it from becoming cracked. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Mayo Clinic Minute: Fingernails are clues to your health (August 2022).