What to Do if You Experience Nail Tenderness

The Nail Unit
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Are Your Nails Suffering?

Your hands take a lot of abuse at work, and that includes your fingernails.  If you are regularly shampooing customer’s hair and using various hair products without gloves, your fingernails are really taking a beating, not to mention they are potentially at risk of being exposed to a fungal or bacterial infection.

Being in and out of water can make your nails feel soft for a short time, but really only until they are dry.  There are a number of medical conditions that are more common in individuals who do wet work and have to wash their hands a lot.

If your nails are experiencing any change that associated with tenderness or discomfort which does not reverse quickly, it might just cosmetologist ,cosmetologist resume ,licensed cosmetologist ,cover letter cosmetologist ,cosmetologist salary ,salary of cosmetologist ,cosmetologist pay scale ,cosmetologist clipart ,resume for cosmetologist ,famous cosmetologis ,medical insurance ,medical insurances ,medical question  ,medical ,medical questions ,medical devices ,medical conditions ,medical software companies ,medical condition ,hair styling set ,hair ,beauty advisor skills  ,beauty consultant skills ,natural hair growth ,haircuts for thin hair  ,hair growth ,hair style ,hair care ,hair styles  ,hair loss treatment ,barber ,barber shop ,barber shops  ,barber school    ,hair stylist   ,fashion stylist,celebrity stylist,hair stylist resume,fashion stylist jobs,stylist games,fashion stylist houston, hair loss treatment,hair loss,hair loss product   ,best hair loss product,hair loss treatments, hair loss protection,   female hair loss,to prevent hair loss,cause hair loss,

be time to talk to your doctor about it and see if there is a problem and how to best deal with it.  One of the things you want to avoid is developing ongoing tenderness and discomfort as well as a deformed nail.

Is It a Fingernail Infection?

There are two types of infections that can afflict the fingernails: bacterial and fungal.  Treatment varies according to the specific cause of the infection, which is a matter for your doctor to investigate and decide.


bacterial nail infection

Bacterial Nail Infection

Bacterial infections can also lead to tender and sore nails.  This type of infection frequently develops around the folds of the nails causing the areas to become puffy, reddened and sensitive to the touch. The medical term for this type of infection is called paronychia.  There is an acute form that develops suddenly and in addition to the symptoms mentioned above, there can be drainage of pus from the affected nail folds.  On occasion, this infection can cause the nail to turn a greenish color which is usually a sign that bacteria called pseudomonas might be present.

Chronic paronychial infections cause the skin around the nails to become puffy, darkened, and sometimes separate from the nail which tends to become thickened and discolored as well.  Susceptible individuals such as diabetics can develop secondary yeast infections mixed in with the bacterial infection in chronic cases.

It’s important to make sure all equipment and work surfaces are cleaned quickly and thoroughly, and that any little cuts or nicks you get on your hands are cleaned and covered to minimize the risk of developing a secondary bacterial infection.


Fingernails can suffer from four different types of fungal nail infections.  The most common is distal subungual onychomycosis, which frequently is due to the same fungus that causes athlete’s foot and ringworm.  The nail can actually start to crumble, become yellow, and sometimes thickened with this condition.  It is contagious, stubborn to treat and can be spread via warm, moist surfaces.  This is far and away the most common fungal nail infection, and it poses a real threat to barbers and hair stylists.

The second most common type of fungal nail infection is white superficial onychomycosis. It features white spots on the nails that will develop into a chalky powder if left untreated.  The good news is that this fungal infection responds well to treatment.  

Proximal subungual onychomycosis is fairly rare, and it causes the skin at the base of the nail to thicken and become whitened and chalky as well.

Candida onychomycosis is a type of yeast infection that can occur in the nails as mentioned above in association with paronychia, but it is fairly unusual.  It causes the nail to become tender and even painful in the paronychial areas, which sets it apart from other fungal nail infections.

Sore, tender nails can make work a misery, and really hands and nails with any sort of infection should not go near your clients.  The first line of defense is keeping everything meticulously clean and sterile, even when under pressure from impatient clients or colleagues.

But if you do develop any sign of an infection, such as tender nails, use antiseptics, vinegar in water soaks and topical antibiotic creams or ointments.  If these don’t work, call your doctor to get relief before it gets worse.  Your physician might prescribe oral anti-yeast or anti-fungal medications for several weeks up to several months to clear the infection completely.  Then it will be necessary to protect your hands at work to prevent the problem from occurring again.

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