Home Health & Fitness 6 Toenail Colours that can Indicate a Health Problem

6 Toenail Colours that can Indicate a Health Problem


You always like to watch your hands and fingernails more than your feet and toenails.

However, you may like to do the opposite, i.e. focus on your toenails, if you come to know that toenails can reveal if there is a health problem.

Image Courtesy: modpodpodiatry.com.au

Here are some simple indications that toenails give and help you find about a health issue so that you can act fast before it worsens.

1. Green Toenails

This condition is known as chloronychia or green-nail syndrome and results from an infection.

Usually it’s caused by bacteria that flourish in wet and humid conditions, such as sponges, hot tubs or even tight-fitting footwear you’ve been using for long.

Scrubbing the nail won’t help because the colour would be under the nail. So, you should see a doctor instead.

2. Yellow Toenails

Yellow toenails are usually caused by a fungus. But this fungus is so common that you don’t have to see a doctor but can treat it with an over-the-counter antifungal cream.

If the toenail is yellow and thick, first file down its surface so as to allow the drug to reach the deeper layers.

But if this treatment doesn’t work, you’ll have to see a doctor, e.g. Sydney podiatry like ModPod Podiatry.

3. Black Toenail

If your toenail has turned black, there are high chances that there’s a bruise beneath the nail, known as subungual hematoma.

It can be caused from stubbing of the toe or shoes that cram your feet on the front side.

Actually the bruise starts as red, then turns purple, then brown and black at last when the blood pools and clots under the nail.

Such a black toenail may keep growing out in around 6 to 9 months or even longer.

However, black toenail can be caused due to some other reasons too though they are rare, such as:

  • Chronic ingrown nail
  • Fungal infection
  • Malignant melanoma, a serious kind of skin cancer
  • Some other health issue

4. White Toenails

If your toenail has become white or got powdery large patches, it may be because of a fungal infection, most probably something known as superficial onychomycosis.

Get a fungal nail infection treatment according to ModPod Podiatry as soon as possible. White superficial onychomycosis can spread throughout the toenail and can cause the whole nail to turn rough and flaky.