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Home / Nails / White Spots on Toenails | Leukonychia, Causes, Diagnosis & Treatment

White Spots on Toenails | Leukonychia, Causes, Diagnosis & Treatment


What are the leukonychia totalis white spots on the nails?

Leukonychia or white spots on the nails:

The white spots on the nails are referred as leukonychia. It is white discoloration that appears on our nails. The white spots can be either leukonychia totalis in which the whole nail gets white or leukonychia partialis in which a part of nail gets white as small white dots. Partial leukonychia can be punctate, transverse or longitudinal. This partial discoloration may appear on the entire nail if the condition gets severe. Transverse white spots appear are white bands or lines on the nails while punctate discoloration appears as white dots or small spots on the nails.

Spots on the toenails:

Spots on toenails occur due to fungal infection. Sports persons who wear joggers are more likely to develop such spots on toenails. Similarly, people in cold areas who wear warm shoes or joggers may develop spots on toenails due to fungal infection as fungus develops in the warm damp moist environment. Wearing socks on wet feet right after taking a shower in winters will cause fungal growth and thus spots on toenails

Causes of white spots on the nails:

The white discoloration that appears on the nails is due to various factors either physical or chemical. Females apply nail paints which contain sharp chemicals that damage their nails causing an allergic reaction and thus spots on the nails. Any physical injury to nail may disrupt nail matrix that will lead to whitening of nails. Excessive knocking of nails, slamming a door, trauma from footwear (arsenic or lead poisoning), nephrotic syndrome (renal failure or damage to kidney nephrons), chemotherapy, infection caused by herpes and leprosy, excessive biting of nails, nutritional or dietary deficiency (most commonly vitamin, protein, zinc or iron deficiency) and frequent use of manicure, etc. are some other factors that can cause white spots on the nails.

Diagnosis of white spots on the nails

Have a thorough medical checkup by a specialist doctor including blood tests, examination of liver, heart and kidney and inspection of malnutrition to avoid serious hazards.


White Spots on Nails
White Spots on Nails

Treatment of white spots on the nails

If you have a habit of nail biting, then stop this habit to avoid white spots on your nails. If your doctor diagnoses any dietary deficiency, then improve your diet. Take fruits, meat, milk, eggs, cheese, soya beans, salmon, nuts, etc. in the case of vitamin, calcium or protein deficiency. Your doctor may prescribe vitamin rich tablets too. Avoid excessive manicure and use of nail paints. Change cosmetic’s brand time to time to avoid an allergic reaction. Take antibiotics during infection. Common home treatments can recover this without any complications. 


For treating spots on finger nails, you have to moisturize them regularly. Moisturize your finger nails with nourishing hand lotion at least twice a day (just before sleep). Clip the white part that grows beyond the nail base. Tea tree oil and orange oil are very beneficial in treating spots on fingernails. Vinegar has antifungal properties, so soak your nails in it to resist fungal growth. Rub garlic cloves and lemon slices for spotless nails. 

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