Soft Nails

Illustration of soft nails by different nail breakagesSoft nails that keep breaking or tearing are most commonly caused by genetic factors, changes in sex hormone levels at menopause, alcoholism and sometimes persistent infections of the nail bed by a fungus or bacteria. There is no direct link between most cases of nail softening and bone softening (osteoporosis), but a link is possible with the rare condition osteomalacia in which osteoporosis and soft nails occur.

A diet high in calcium may help the problem slightly, but nail hardening lacquer is probably the best treatment. The fact that so many nail hardening products are available in beauty shops will give some idea of how common this problem has become.

(Last modified: 17th Oct 2014)

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