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Onychauxis? What is it and how can a podiatrist help?

Onychauxic nails? Something you’ve probably seen but never heard of!

What is onychauxis?

Onychauxis refers to a thickened nail which can lead to changes in colour and texture of the nail.

What causes onychauxis?

There are many reasons why your nail may thicken over time, here are some common causes:

- Trauma or pressure: damage or pressure to the nail can result in the nail thickening to protect itself, similar to the skin developing callus. It can often occur due to stubbing the toenails, poor fitting footwear or other types of trauma/pressure.

- Fungal infections: nails can thicken due to fungal infections of the nail bed. This results in discoloured, thick and friable nails.

- Age: as we age, nails can naturally thicken.

- Medical conditions: some medical conditions can cause onychauxis, these can include psoriasis, diabetes, poor circulation etc.

What can you do to help?

- Take care of your nails, cutting them straight across

- Wearing adequate fitting footwear to protect them from shearing forces/pressure

- Avoid trauma, easier said than done, but be mindful of your feet! They get you through a lot!

- Seek an expert opinion such a seeing your local podiatrist if your nails are starting to change or becoming difficult to manage.

What can a podiatrist do to help?

- Onychauxic nails can be difficult to manage at home so why not have your nails cared for by a podiatrist.

- Podiatrists use nail clippers effective for cutting through thick and tough nails

- We have equipment that can reduce the thickness of the nail and at times help to resolve the onychauxis over time.

- We can assist in diagnosing the cause of the thickened nails and set you on the right path to resolving/managing the issue.

- At times, the nail may become too painful and thick to manage conservatively and can be removed entirely under local anaesthetic.

Stop being embarrassed by your thickened nails and see your local podiatrist today! Click below or call 1800 778 316.

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