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    ALL ABOUT NAIL INJURIES AND NAIL DISEASES

    The forthcoming text is based on expert knowledge and public articles from e.g. Netdoktor.dk, Sundhed.dk and Knowledge Center for Allergy. If you have the slightest doubt as to whether you may have contracted a nail disease, nail damage or allergy, you are advised to contact your doctor for specific advice and guidance on treatment.

    When doing nails, there will always be a certain risk of becoming acquainted with nail diseases and/or nail changes. Some nail changes are natural and harmless, while others are important to take care of. Nail damage, nail diseases and allergies can to a certain extent be self-inflicted by incorrect nail technique or lack of knowledge in the field. Therefore, it is extremely important to obtain the most basic knowledge about the use of nail products and handling inappropriate conditions.

    In this material, some of the most common nail diseases and injuries have been collected. But the individual reader has a responsibility to seek further knowledge himself, since the material here is far from completely comprehensive. In case of doubt, as mentioned, you should always contact your own doctor for concrete advice and guidance.


    Overfiling
    Over-filing is a condition where too much has been filed (or scraped) on the natural nail, whereby one or more of the nail layers have been removed. This gives rise to redness, tenderness and, in extreme cases, wounds on the nail, if the filet has gone all the way down to the skin.

    Mild cases of over-filing conditions appear as red areas on the nail that are extremely painful. The red color occurs because the nail is filed so thin that you are very close to the skin under the nail. Product can be applied on top of light conditions of overfilling. This will even seem like one
    protective membrane over the exposed area. Severe cases of overfilling conditions appear when the fillet has been filed all the way down to the skin. This is extremely painful and there is an increased risk of infection and permanent damage. It is important that product is never applied to areas where there is a hole down to the nail. Instead, the nail should rest until the wound has healed and the area has completely grown out with the nail.

    Within overfilling modes there is also a mode called "Rings of fire". Rings of fire is the same as the conditions mentioned above, but is shaped like the rounding of the cuticle, because the condition has arisen in connection with, for example, PREP of the cuticle, or when the transition from the natural nail to the nail product has been smoothed by filing.

    In general, it is very important to be careful when filing near the natural nail – especially if you use an electric nail file. When doing file work near the natural nail, it is recommended that you only use buffers and file on grit 180 or above bits that are intended for filing on the natural nail.


    Crack in the middle of the nail plate
    A break in the middle of the nail plate is a condition where the nail is broken in an area of ​​the nail that is stuck to the skin. By its very nature, the condition can be very painful, and it is therefore important to treat it correctly. The condition can be divided into the following two categories:


    1) Crack in the middle of the nail while wearing the product
    If a crack in the middle of the nail occurs while wearing nail product, the reason is often that the shape of the nail is built incorrectly. Thus, there are no points of strength that the nail can be supported by, which leads to an increased risk of the nail breaking in an inappropriate place. If you experience that a nail breaks in the middle of the nail while you are wearing product, you must remove all product as far as possible. As the wound naturally does not benefit from exposure to Fast Acetone Remover , the product must be filed off. It can be extremely painful, and it is therefore recommended that you do it as gently as possible. The most optimal is to use an electric nail file with a fine to medium bit (or sanding bands), as a manual file will create a lot of movement and thus more pain. However, it is extremely important to spare the natural nail by avoiding filing directly on the nail and the wound. When as much product as possible has been removed, the natural nail must be cut as short as possible to avoid further stress. In addition, the nail must be kept at rest without the application of new product, and normal wound treatment and care must be performed until the wound has healed and grown out with the natural nail.

    2) Crack in the middle of the nail caused by thin or brittle nails
    If a crack in the middle of the natural nail occurs without nail product on, the reason is often that the nail is thin, fragile or has a previous injury. This can both be congenital or have arisen due to e.g. dry nails, too rough a nail technique, over-filing or incorrect removal. If this condition occurs, product may only be applied if there is no hole all the way down to the skin. If there is a hole all the way down to the skin, the natural nail must be cut as short as possible to avoid further stress. In addition, the nail must be kept at rest, and general wound treatment and care must be carried out.

    Greenie (pseudomonas)
    Greenie is a very common condition where the nail has a greenish/brownish spot after wearing nail product. It doesn't look nice, but fortunately is completely harmless.

    Greenie is caused by a soil bacterium called pseudomonas. Pseudomonas is found everywhere in our environment, for example in the forest floor, in the soil of the garden, in the potted plants of the house, in the soil residues on our purchased vegetables, in the air around us and so on. Therefore, we are exposed to the bacteria on a daily basis without it doing any harm.

    The problem arises if the pseudomonas bacterium gets optimal living conditions, which it gets when it is in dark, humid and oxygen-poor areas. This can, for example, be in the cavity that occurs between the natural nail and a nail product that has lifted off the nail. As the bacteria lives and multiplies, the area of ​​the nail will slowly become discolored. The color will go from a yellowish color to a greener color and finally a brownish stain. The longer the bacteria has lived, the darker the color of the nails will be.

    The greenie bacteria dies as soon as it gets oxygen. If you notice a greenie-infected nail, it is therefore important that ALL product is removed from the natural nail so that oxygen can penetrate there. The nail is then disinfected well, and product can be applied again. However, it cannot be emphasized enough how important it is that ALL product is removed before building a new nail. If there is even the slightest remaining pseudomonas bacteria on the nail, it will still be able to multiply further.

    Greenie is therefore easy to treat by going through the following procedure:

    1. Remove ALL product from the nail. The green/brown area on the nail itself must NOT be filed away, as in that case you risk doing file damage to the natural nail. Instead, it must grow out with the nail. Once all the product is removed, the bacteria will come into contact with oxygen and sunlight, which will kill the bacteria. Although the green/brownish color can still be seen, the bacteria will no longer be able to live and multiply.

    2. Disinfect the nails by cleaning with a disinfectant liquid. Then wash your hands thoroughly and clean your nails with Cleaner+ .

    3. Disinfect all the nail tools that have been in contact with the greenie bacteria. If one's file and brushes cannot be disinfected, they must be thrown away.

    4. Carry out a careful PREP and make sure the nails are completely dry. New product can then be applied.

    Nail plate lifting (onycholysis)
    Nail plate lifting (onycholysis) is a condition where the nail plate detaches from the nail bed (skin). Nail plate lift is typically seen at the tip of the nail and/or on the sides and appears as a white area under the nail.

    Nail plate lifting can occur for natural reasons such as blows, shocks, breaks or conditions such as psoriasis or eczema. However, it can also occur if you have carried out an overly harsh nail technique such as over-filing, incorrect construction of an extension, if you have used a tip that does not fit the size, or if the product has been forced off the nail. Thus, it is generally all the situations where you have been too hard on the nail.

    With minimal nail plate lifting, product can still be applied. The product can even act as a patch or a protective layer. However, it is important to point out that you must be extremely gentle with the nail and ensure that you do not cause further discomfort.

    If the condition is extreme, it is recommended to give the nails a break from products until they have grown out and are healthy again. Carefully cut the nail short, treat the nail with oil several times a day, and be careful NOT to clean under the nail with instruments of any kind. The more rest the nails can get, the faster they will return to normal.


    Nail fungus (onychomycosis)
    Nail fungus (onychomycosis) is a fungal infection of one or more nails. It occurs most frequently on toenails. The infection often starts on the outside or on the side of the nail and in the later stages spreads all the way over the nail.

    Nail fungus is feared by many because the fungal spores are highly contagious and difficult to get rid of. The sooner you get treatment for nail fungus, the easier it is to get rid of it. It is therefore extremely important that you contact your doctor immediately if you discover the infection. The doctor will inoculate/scrape the nail and send it for analysis for fungal spores and will be able to initiate the correct treatment such as
    antibiotics against fungus. A fungal infection cannot be cured with various over-the-counter creams/liquids.

    Nail fungus thrives in dark, moist and low-oxygen environments, which is why the condition is far more frequent on toenails, which are wrapped in shoes and socks all day, as opposed to hands, which are free and exposed to daylight and oxygen. But once the fungus has found its way to the fingernails and is closed off with nail product, it quickly infects/spreads to the surrounding nails. Therefore, nail fungus is often seen in outbreaks on several nails at a time. This also applies to the toenails. Nail fungus is usually seen as discolored, deformed and thickened areas on the nails. The fungus is often experienced as smelling foul and can be painful. Once again, it is important to emphasize that you should always go to your own doctor if you suspect fungus.


    Nail splinters (hemorrhages)
    Nail splinters (hemorrhages) are small, vertical, brownish streaks that look like splinters in the nail. The small splinters occur because the small blood vessels down in the nail bed are exposed to a trauma such as a shock or blow. The splinters can also occur with incorrect and rough nail technique such as over-filing or incorrect removal. Nail splinters are completely harmless, but they can be painful.

    You may continue to wear the product if you experience nail splinters. In fact, the product can act as a band-aid and, on top of that, protect against new trauma. If the nail splinters have arisen due to
    for heavy-handed nail technique, one must, however, be careful in the future to treat the nails more gently.


    Pinched nail (hematoma)
    A pinched nail will appear with a blue/purple/black stain underneath the nail. The plaque appears on the basis of a bleeding where it has been pinched or suffered a blow. A pinched nail is not dangerous - it is just painful and not very attractive. If you pinch a nail, it just needs to rest. The nail will heal itself and the bleeding will grow with the nail.

    Inflammation (paronychion)
    Inflammation is a common condition that can occur in the nail root, in the nail folds or in the skin around or under the nail. Inflammatory conditions can occur for various reasons. It can be both because of bacteria or because of disturbed skin as a result of excessive nail treatment. Do not work on an inflamed nail or apply product. This can worsen the condition, both during application and during removal. If inflammation is felt, the area must be kept clean and care must be taken to give it rest until it is fully healed. If the condition becomes so bad that it is very painful, red and swollen, it is recommended to contact the doctor for proper treatment.

    Damage to the nail matrix or lunula
    If damage occurs in the matrix (the area 1-2 cm above the cuticle), this most often shows up as permanent damage to the overlying layer of the natural nail. It could, for example, be a notch or a groove in the nail, which is permanently there for the rest of your life, because you e.g. has pinched the finger or bumped it hard against something.

    If there is damage to the lunula (the white semi-arch on the nail), which contributes to the deeper nail layers, this damage will often appear in the form of splintered nails, which constantly split, splinter or break in a certain place.

    Unfortunately, there is no treatment for damage to the matrix and lunula. All you can do is get to know the damage and find out what nail products work depending on the extent of the damage.

    Psoriasis
    Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease in which the cells of the epidermis divide faster than normal, and where there is also an inflammatory reaction (inflammation) in the epidermis and dermis. This creates visible scales and redness in the skin. Psoriasis can also appear as reddish areas on the nails or small dots and/or grooves in the surface of the nail plate. Bad cases of psoriasis can also lead to nail plate lifting.

    You can build artificial nails even if you have psoriasis - as long as the nail plate does not lift excessively from the nail bed. However, it is important to be aware that people with psoriasis may experience adhesion problems and that it cannot be guaranteed that the nails will last for a long time. In addition, you must be aware that the nails of people with psoriasis are often more sensitive than those without. Therefore, there is a greater risk of experiencing conditions such as nail plate lifting (onicolysis), haematomas, splinters or brittle nails after using nail products. It is therefore recommended to always be extra gentle and pay attention to correct nail technique and structure if you suffer from psoriasis.

    Contact allergy
    Contact allergy is an inflammatory condition in the skin that can occur through contact with skin irritants or allergens. It often manifests itself in eczema in the form of redness, swelling, itching as well as small bumps and blisters that can eventually become sores. If you experience an allergic reaction, it is important that the product is removed as soon as possible. If you are in any doubt as to whether the allergic reaction requires treatment, you are advised to contact your own doctor .

    Why does contact allergy occur?
    Contact allergies are caused by chemical substances that penetrate the skin and
    affects the immune system. The substances that can cause allergies are called allergens. Allergens can be metals, preservatives, perfumes, dyes, essential oils, plants or other substances that occur in completely normal consumer products such as jewellery, cleaning agents and cosmetics – including nail products. Most people are therefore in daily contact with products that contain allergens.

    There are several different factors that are decisive for whether a contact allergy actually occurs. Quite roughly, they can be divided into product, environmental and genetic factors.

    The product-related factors consist of, among other things, of how allergenic the ingredients/allergens in a nail product are, how high a concentration of the allergen one is exposed to and the frequency and duration of contact with the allergen. The environmental factors consist of, among other things of the extent to which you are in contact with other allergens or skin irritants in your everyday life. The genetic factors consist of, among other things of whether you have a congenital tendency to eczema (atopic eczema or childhood eczema) or other allergies.

    The combination of the product, environmental and genetic factors is decisive for how high or low the risk is of getting a contact allergy.

    When does contact allergy occur?
    The first time a person is exposed to a chemical to which he or she develops an allergy, the person experiences no symptoms. The first time, the chemical substances simply penetrate the skin and activate the so-called T cells, which will next time recognize and attack the chemical substance.

    It is therefore only the second time that the person who is exposed to the substance will experience the allergic reaction. The second time, the previously activated T cells react and try to neutralize the penetrating substance. It is in this process that an allergic reaction occurs. The communication between the cells takes time and therefore the skin reaction will usually only appear 18 to 48 hours later.

    What can you do yourself to avoid contact allergies?
    Fortunately, there are several things you can do yourself to protect yourself against the risk of contact allergy:

    1. Choose products carefully
      There is a difference in how allergenic ingredients are, and it is therefore not without significance what one's products are made of. Nail products from The Gel Collection are 21FREE, which means that they are free of 21 types of substances with unwanted chemistry – including hema, di-hema, parabens, mehq and others. At the same time, the products have been developed in such a way that the concentration of the unavoidable allergens is reduced - without compromising on durability and quality. We would therefore claim that it is the best alternative on the market if you try to avoid as much unwanted chemistry as possible.

    2. Ensure complete curing
      Nail products only pose a risk of allergy when they are in liquid form. The reason is that the molecules, which otherwise penetrate the skin, change to solid form when they are hardened. Once they have changed to a solid form, they cannot penetrate anything – not even the skin. In the event that you have not ensured that the product is fully cured, you will therefore be exposed to exposed allergenic molecules over a longer period. In addition, the allergenic molecules will potentially be swirled around the body with the nail dust when you file the product off. It is therefore important to ensure a perfect curing every time - So make sure that you have a lamp of good quality and that it lives up to the products' specifications.

    3. Avoid liquid product on the skin
      For the same reason as above, it is important to avoid liquid product on the skin. The exposed allergenic molecules can penetrate the skin in a relatively short time, and it is therefore important to have the product removed as soon as possible if the accident is over. This is done easily and effectively by scraping off the excess product with a rose stick or a Micro Wipe Stick saturated with Cleaner+ .

    4. Follow the product's instructions
      Based on EU legislation, all cosmetic products (including nail products) have had an external safety assessment carried out. The conclusion of the safety assessment is, among other things, taken on the basis of the product's instructions. If you deviate from the product's instructions, you may therefore risk exposing yourself to the product's allergens beyond the accepted safety level.

    Despite doing your best, there are never any guarantees against contact allergies. Some probably develop contact allergies more easily than others and can have an allergic reaction even when exposed within the framework of the safety assessment, without environmental influence or genetic tendency to allergies.

    However, it is important to remember that the risk of developing a contact allergy is very small. You should therefore not be afraid of allergies, but of course have respect for the fact that nail products are chemicals that must be used correctly.