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Toenails growing in "layers" that create horizontal lines, why?

Discussion in 'Ask your questions here' started by gilmoregirlz, Aug 22, 2010.

  1. Angie

    Angie Guest

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    I have had this same problem for years. Mine always happens when I paint my toenails for some reason. When I don't wear nail polish, they tend to go back to normal (takes a long time though). Then, just when I think it's safe to paint them again, the layers appear (and only on my big toes). Sooo....it is definitely a mystery. Nail professionals and docs don't seem to have an answer.
  2. KrispyB

    KrispyB Guest

    I am going on 10 years with this problem on both big toenails. I have tried going long periods of time wearing open-toed shoes, without toenail polish, and keeping the nails trimmed short. A few years ago, a dermatologist suggested the cause was trauma (dietary or physical). He said that, because of the slow growth of toenails, it can take a long time to see a new regrowth/layer, which makes it very difficult to pinpoint the exact cause. The dermatologist did not have any solutions except to hide the layers with toenail polish.
  3. Matteo

    Matteo Guest

    Hi i have the same thing (im 12) my nails started layering one would grow out then another would start to form and grow on top. I believe this came from me playing soccer for 4 years and constantly hitting my toes and injuring them. It doesnt hurt nor has it ever no one else in my family has gotten it. So i continue to just take care of them and file and cut them down they are not ingrown nor like Beaus lines, its sorta like how you might layer a cake but they grow outwards once they start to layer and grow.
  4. Betty Betty

    Betty Betty Guest

  5. Betty Betty

    Betty Betty Guest

  6. Betty Betty

    Betty Betty Guest

    This is so interesting! This also started happening to me just after a car accident. I assumed it was related to my brain using all the energy from the body to heal but it has been 14 months now and it hasn't gone away!
  7. Carey

    Carey Guest

    I started growing an extra layer on my big toe toenails 3 years ago after my thyroidectomy. The thyroid can affect nail health so I attributed it to that, but my thyroid levels have been in check so I really do not know what it is. As soon as it grows out, another layer starts, much to my dismay. I wear comfortable shoes, mostly open-toes sandals and no injuries to speak of. The podiatrist didn't know what it is either. I will have to live with it I guess. It could be worse.....
  8. Researcher

    Researcher Guest

    Actually Onychomadesis is a condition where without injury the toenail spontaneously dies and completely falls off.
  10. You know what? This is going to sound kind of weird , but I had the same kind of thick toenail on my big toe , and then my 2nd toe. For a few months , instead of putting lotion on my feet I used pine oil (yeah , like pine- sol). Do you know what? I noticed it started going away. But I stopped because I was using the pine oil for a rash I had on the same foot , which also went away. So now , I guess I will go back to the pine-sol. Give it a shot. What have you got to lose? Besides , at least your feet will smell good. I work as a paramedic , and obviously deal with a lot of seniors , and people who just don't take care of their bodies , and feet. Its important. I think we ignore our feet until something like this comes up.
  11. Deanna

    Deanna Guest

    Check your thyroid function
  12. Just came across this thread and felt I should leave a comment-- like most people who commented before me, I have been experiencing layered toenails for more than a decade now. This was most likely caused by trauma and cold feet (poor blood circulation). My dermatologist was of the opinion both toenails suffered trauma to that area, which I can confirm happened back in 2001. Why these layers disappear and then show up again? I am not entirely sure, but the doctor confirmed no fungal infection is involved, it is just a deformity in the way the nails grow. One ointment which help me get rid of the layers for long periods of times is called Emtrix. I highly recommend you look into it. Results can be seen after two weeks but it can take longer for the layers to completely disappear. Again, this is not a fungus as per medical observation, but the ointment does the work nonetheless (something to do with rearranging the nail formation/texture on the cellular level). I hope this info helps those who read this thread after my comment. God bless you all!
  13. I have had this same issue for at least 10 or 12 years and I just recently decided to try and figure out what it is and I believe I have solved it.

    I have the same issue described here by almost everyone else where about 1/2 of the toenail on both of my big toes grows thick and looks slightly yellow. The nail seems to grow thicker instead of growing out as fast as the others. You can see the layers and sometimes can separate them and peel a layer off if it cracks. I have always known that it is not a fungus because it always stays at the end of my toe, doesn't get worse, and has never spread to any other toes in all the years. I use the same nail clippers on all my toenails and fingernails and I would imagine that would easily cause it to spread if it was a fungus.

    I believe this exact same thing is happening to so many people because it is caused by the way we walk. When we walk, we are putting too much stress on the tip of our big toes for balance and this force is pushing the nail up off of the nail bed and also pushing it back into the toe somehow causing it to grow thicker in layers instead of just growing out. In my case, I know it is caused by how I walk, but I would imagine if you have improperly fitting shoes that put pressure on your toes and wear them a lot, it could cause the same problem.

    Another factor that I believe makes it worse is that I allow my toenails to grow too long. The longer toenail will create pressure sooner and probably work like a lever increasing the upwards pressure that separates the front of the nail from the nail bed. As long as I'm not in the shower, I always have socks on, and I don't really do anything where I would need to take my socks off in front of other people, so I don't cut my toenails as often. I probably cut my fingernails every week, but let my toenails go 2 or 3 weeks because I am lazy and nobody has to see them.

    A few months ago when I thought of this, I decided to try and change the way I walk and keep at least my big toenails shorter. When I walk, I try to remember to not putt too much pressure on the tip of my big toes and I cut them back fairly short about once a week. After a couple weeks, I started to notice that the amount of thick nail was getting less and less every time I cut them. Now, probably 2 or 3 months later, they are almost completely back to normal. The layers and lines are gone and there is almost no yellow color at all. I can still tell that they are slightly thicker, but you have to look very close. It is night and day compared to how they use to look and standing up, they look completely normal. There will probably always be a slight amount of trauma to the nail unless I can completely change the way I walk, but that probably wont happen.

    Give it a try for a few months and see if you have the same results I did. You have to really try and think about it every time you walk though. After a couple weeks of thinking about it, it will start to become a habit and you won't have to focus on it as much anymore. I am curious to hear if this helps other people that read this. You can post here as a guest without creating an account.
  14. Cheryl11111

    Cheryl11111 Guest

  15. B.O.

    B.O. Guest

    I've had this problem for at least 6 years, I only noticed it during a summer trip to the DR nearly 7 years ago. I have no idea when it started, but there's no pain (unless someone steps on it), and I went to a podiatrist and she took a biopsy which ruled out toe fungus. She also told me it was caused by trauma and "shaved" down my nail, however my nail still continued to grow upwards (in layers), rather than outwards. Now, it barely covers 1/2 of the nail bed and it looks the same as it did before. It's only on my left big toenail, the right one is normal. Does anyone know what this is or how to treat it?! I'm sick of it.

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