Why do toenails keep falling off?

Last Update: April 20, 2022

This is a question our experts keep getting from time to time. Now, we have got the complete detailed explanation and answer for everyone, who is interested!

Asked by: Elenor Hintz
Score: 4.6/5 (49 votes)

It's usually caused by an injury, fungal infection, or psoriasis. However, chemicals, certain medications, and serious illness can also make your toenail fall off. Once your toenail falls off, it can't reattach itself and keep growing. You'll need to wait for the new nail to grow back in its place.

Should I be worried if my toenail falls off?

Detached toenails are usually safe to remove, and they will typically grow back within a year and a half. A detached toenail can result from an injury or infection. Fungal infections or injuries may require additional medical attention to help ensure the toenail grows back properly.

What illness causes your toenails to fall off?

A nail fungal infection, known as onychomycosis, is one of the most common reasons that toenails detach from the nail bed and fall off.

How do I stop my toenail from falling off?

Trim your toenails straight across (instead of rounding them off) and keep them even with the edges of your toes. Make sure your shoes are a thumb's width longer than your longest toe. Wear steel-toed boots or shoes if you work in an area that increases your risk of having something heavy fall on your feet.

Why toe nails are falling off?

The two most common reasons for a toenail falling off are injuries and fungal infections. We'll start with injuries. Sometimes the precipitating cause is obvious—say you dropped a heavy book on your toe, or stubbed it on a sturdy table leg. However, more often small impacts over time are the principal problem.

What To Do if Your Toenail Falls Off

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What medication causes toenails to fall off?

Drugs that can cause onycholysis and photo-onycholysis include:
  • Psoralens (photochemotherapy or PUVA)
  • Doxycycline.
  • Thiazide diuretics.
  • Oral contraceptives.
  • Fluoroquinolone antibiotics.
  • Taxanes.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Captopril.

Can stress make your toenails fall off?

Brittle, peeling nails also are a common side effect of stress. “Sometimes patients with nail problems are not aware that their habits or tics from being stressed out or nervous are at the root of their problem,” said Dr. Mayoral.

What does Onycholysis look like?

Nail lifting (onycholysis) is the spontaneous separation (detachment) of the fingernail or toenail from the nail bed at the end of the nail (distal) and/or on the sides of the nail (lateral). The appearance of nail lifting may resemble a half-moon, or the free edge of the nail may rise up like a hood.

Should I let my toenail fall off naturally?

If you have a damaged toenail, you might be tempted to remove it yourself. But while damaged toenails sometimes fall off on their own, it's not a good idea to force that process. Removing a damaged toenail yourself could lead to serious complications that end up making matters worse.

Do toenails grow back after fungus?

There are two ways to do it: Permanently, so it never grows back (and then you won't have a toenail anymore), or you can let it grow back in. Sometimes it grows back in as a healthy nail, and sometimes it grows back with the fungus.

Can diabetes make your toenails fall off?

Diabetes can also restrict circulation to your feet, which creates the right conditions for fungus to grow and your toenail to fall off. When fungus grows untreated on your foot, it can sever the connective tissue between your toenail and your foot. And eventually, that causes to your toenail falling off.

How do you treat Onycholysis?

What is the treatment for onycholysis?
  1. Clip the affected portion of the nail and keep the nail(s) short with frequent trimming.
  2. Minimise activities that traumatise the nail and nailbed.
  3. Avoid potential irritants such as nail enamel, enamel remover, solvents, and detergents.

What can cause Onycholysis?

The most common cause of onycholysis is trauma. Even slight trauma can cause onycholysis when it happens repetitively — for example, the daily tapping of long fingernails on a keyboard or counter. Onycholysis also can be caused by manicure tools that are pushed beneath the nail to clear dirt or smooth the nail.

How do you help toenail grow back?

Soak your foot in a combination of 1 tsp (5 g) of salt and 4 cups (1 L) of warm water for 20 minutes, 2 or 3 times each day, for the first 3 days after you lose your toenail. Cover with a fresh bandage. Ensure the nail bed is kept dry and clean until the nail bed is firm and you see signs of the nail growing back.

How do you know if your nail bed is damaged?

A person should see a doctor if:
  1. any jewelry is difficult to remove from the injured finger or toe.
  2. pooling blood covers more than half of the nail bed.
  3. pain from the injury is severe.
  4. bleeding does not easily stop.
  5. any cut is deep.
  6. the nail is cut, torn, or detached from the nail bed.
  7. the finger or toe has an usual shape.

Can your toenail grow back if it comes off?

After a nail separates from the nail bed for whatever reason, it will not reattach. A new nail will have to grow back in its place. Nails grow back slowly. It takes about 6 months for a fingernail and up to 18 months for a toenail to grow back.

How do I know if my toenail fungus is dying?

Top 5 signs your toenail fungus has gone nuclear
  1. Nail color changes. If your nail turns white and chalky or yellow, it's not a good sign. ...
  2. Nail position changes. If your nail starts to curl downward or upward, it's time to be concerned. ...
  3. Nail texture changes. ...
  4. Nail smell changes. ...
  5. Nail sensation changes.

How do I get my toenail to reattach to the nail bed?

Reapply petroleum jelly, and cover with a fresh adhesive bandage. Keep the nail bed dry, clean, and covered with petroleum jelly and an adhesive bandage until the nail bed is firm or the nail has grown back. Apply a new adhesive bandage whenever the bandage gets wet.

Why would a nail not grow back?

If the nail bed or matrix was damaged, the nail may grow back with a rough or abnormal shape. In some cases the nail may not grow back at all. There may be damage or a cut to the nail bed. This may need to be repaired.

Is onycholysis serious?

Onycholysis is when a person's nail or nails detach from the skin underneath. Although not a serious health condition by itself, onycholysis can be a symptom of a potentially serious illness. It is important for a person to understand what onycholysis is and what it may mean so they can make informed medical decisions.

What is the difference between onychomycosis and onycholysis?

Onychomycosis is a fungal infection of the nail unit [1]. Subungual thickening or hyperkeratosis can occur under the nail plate, resulting in onycholysis or lifting of the nail bed. Onycholysis, specifically is the loss of plate-bed adhesion. Onycholysis does not by itself signify onychomycosis.

What vitamin deficiency causes nail separation?

Iron deficiency can also result in brittle nails, onycholysis and onychorrhexis.

What do nails look like with anemia?

Anemia is a condition where your body lacks enough hemoglobin, a protein that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. While fatigue is the leading sign of anemia, this condition can also show itself through brittle or spoon-shaped nails — called koilonychia.

What are Covid nails?

COVID nails are nail changes that happen a few days or weeks after a COVID-19 infection. They're either a sign that the infection stressed your body, or they could be a rare symptom of the infection itself, depending on your symptoms.

What do renal failure nails look like?

Kidney disease

Ridged nails: Also called koilonychia, rough nails with ridges can exist in the presence of kidney disease. These nails are also frequently spoon-shaped and concave, and they can point to iron-deficiency anemia.