There are so many reasons, otherwise known as factors, that may alter the normal growth rate of one’s nails. These factors can arise as a result of carelessness; it could be internal or external. It could even be both. Whichever way they may be, one thing is sure: they can hinder or favor the growth of nails.
In this article, we shall look critically into how nails grow, what we can do to improve nail growth, factors affecting nail growth, and the best way to deal with them. But before I do so, it’s imperative to know the back ends on which nail growth is hung.
It’s been said a thousand times on this blog that what you eat, to a large extent, is the bedrock of healthy nail growth. How accurate is this statement? Keep reading.
The food we hate to eat or fail to incorporate into our diet might be what we need for our nails to grow well. Food is a requisite for healthy nail growth and must be consumed for shiny-looking nails.
Besides that, not all food is right for your nails. There are some you should never consume, Never.
For example, food rich in vitamins, minerals, and protein keeps our body sparkly and helps to lengthen our nails and keep them in shape. Besides food, some other factors favor nail growth, which we will look out for later in this article.
But before we do that, let’s look at how nails grow.
Factors That Affect Nail Growth
We may not be too quick to notice how our nails are faring not until they start to split, brittle, or start looking pale. When such begins, we are only faced with reality and start taking necessary measures to combat such.
1. Poor circulation
When there is poor blood circulation to your nail region, expect slow nail growth. During circulation, the blood carries nutrients alongside oxygen to all body parts, which invariably helps nails grow faster.
2. ill health
ill-health is another factor that can hinder or affect nail growth. During illness, the body uses its available nutrient to combat the disease-causing organism, leading to slow growth.
4. Poor diet
When your body lacks essential vitamins, protein, or minerals, this can drastically affect how your nails grow.
5. Hormonal changes
Being pregnant can help increase hormone production in the body. During pregnancy, estrogen and progesterone are produced in the body in large quantity, which helps to speed up the rate at which nail grows in pregnant women.
6. Weather condition
During winter, the nail’s growth rate slows down a bit. This is because there is little or no circulation during this period. As one approaches summer, the rate increases due to more water intake.
When your nails are traumatized, there is bound to be slow nail growth. Trauma can lead to severe injuries to either the nail beds, which will invariably affect the growth rate.
Certain chemical like acetone nail polish remover is the leading causes of slow nail growth. This chemical contains harmful substances capable of hindering the rate at which nails grow and often causes them to become weak.
Taking certain medications can also affect the rate at which your nail grows. For example, taking chemotherapy medication can drastically affect your nail growth. If this is the case with you, you may want to reach out to your doctor and discuss your nail health plus other life challenges and get professional help anytime.
10. Location of the nail
The location of the nail on each finger is also a factor that affects nail growth. For example, the nail on the pinky finger grows differently than that of the thumb. So, this might affect how fast or slow your nails will grow.
How Fast Do Nails Grow?
The rate at which nails grow is dependent on various factors. Ideally, nails grow to an outrageous length of 3.5 mm a month. That of the toe usually takes longer to grow. Also, other factors like age, health, diet, and hormonal changes can determine the rate at which our nails grow.
The whole growth process of nails is quite a complex one to understand. Let’s break it down a little bit for your understanding. Usually, nail growth starts and ends with the nail matrix – the portion where new nail cells are formed or produced.
The whole processes start with the matrix. The matrix or nail root can be found underneath the cuticle. The cuticle is that tiny fold of skin that helps to protect new nail cells from bacterial or fungal infection. When these new cells are formed in the matrix, they push the old cells out, which harden alongside the new cells…
As they harden, they grow as nail plates from the cuticle and lay on the nail beds, which are richly supplied with blood vessels. As time goes by and new cells are produced in the matrix, the plates lengthen out to form the free edge – the free edge is the whitish part just after the nail bed.
6 Tips To Improve Nail Growth
If you’re serious about your nails’ health and growth, then you should stop putting your nails through stress. Below are just some ways one can improve his or her nail growth.
1. Practice good nail hygiene
The best way to improve one’s nails is to adopt the lifestyle of caring for them. Avoid using your nail as a tool – That’s not what they are meant for.
2. Avoid tooth and nail game
Try as much as possible to keep your hands far away from the reach of your mouth. Here are ways you can stop nail biting almost instantly.
3. Be nice to your nails
If you want your nails to grow well, you should always strive to make them happy.
One way you can do this is by;
- File them correctly: Nails are to be filed in one direction and not the other way around. Also, avoid using substandard nail files, which cause more harm than good.
- Keep them always moisturized: Moisturizing your nails (using moisturizers like L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream) helps keep your nails in good health and keeps them from splitting now and then.
- Use nail polish sparingly: Nail polish is the major cause of brittle nails, so limit how you use them.
- Stay clear from Acetone: Nail polish remover is another on the list of things you should try to minimize. If you must use one, you should go for those with vitamins.
5. Eat plenty of vegetables
Eating lots of leafy vegetables is undoubtedly one of the surest ways to improve nail growth. These veggies – Broccoli, spinach, and pumpkin are loaded with all the Vitamins your nails need for them to grow out well.
6. Always wear gloves
If you do a lot of house chores, like washing dishes and doing the laundry, then you should consider wearing rubber gloves. This glove not only prevents your nails from harsh chemicals, but they also help to limit your hands coming in direct contact with water.
What causes nails to grow slow?
There are many factors that can contribute to slow nail growth, including aging, certain health conditions, malnutrition, and certain medications.
What things can affect the growth of the nail plate?
Some of the things that can affect the growth of the nail plate include; poor health, aging, season, etc.
As you may have already known, nails can only go from good to worst once they’re not taken good care of. Taking care of them literally doesn’t take much and won’t cause us anything.
However, other factors such as ill health, hormonal differences, trauma, chemicals, weather conditions, and other activities can invariably affect how our nails grow.
Despite that, we can still adopt some things to improve our nail growth. One amongst them is to keep them moisturized with a moisturizer such as L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream.
Now that you know the exact factors affecting your nail growth, I urge you to take action and always imbibe the act of keeping your nails moisturized. Also, if this article has, in a way, helped you, kindly SHARE it with your friends using any of the below buttons.