Week of:
Sep 29, 2017

Nail health

Dear Alice:

I am curious as to whether the nail bed regenerates or not. I used to bite my nails, and slowly I've bitten off some of the nail bed as well, on all ten fingers. It has been two years, and the nail bed does not seem to grow back, and my nails grow according to the new shape of the nail bed. It makes my hands look somewhat ugly, to be honest.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thumbs down to nail injuries

Dear Alice,

I slammed my thumb in a car door and now the nail is about to fall off. I can see my flesh from underneath my nail and it looks all wrinkled and not very healthy. I am afraid that it won't grow back.

Is the skin going to hurt once the nail falls off?

Please let me know.

Thank you.

Toenail fungus

Dear Alice,

I think I might have a toenail fungus infection (onychomycosis). Should I purchase over-the-counter medication and try to remedy the situation on my own, or should I go directly to a podiatrist to evaluate this problem? I do have an excellent insurance and prescription policy!

Fingernails as health indicator

Dear Alice,

I've seen some info online, but can you suggest an authoritative/exhaustive source on what health information, if any, one might gleam from the condition of one's fingernails, i.e., ridges, indents, coloration, spotting, etc.?