There are so many ways that we expose our nails to harsh conditions. We wash dishes and expose them to chemicals. We grip pens and door handles, we carry around a lot of stuff, and we arrange the dining table and subject them to a lot of pressure.
Under these circumstances, the nails can easily crack and break and the experience can be painful indeed. Here are some tips in preventing the nails from breaking and if they are broken, how to treat them:
If the nail is broken, then you must cut them quickly to avoid any further breakage. If the nail is short, then the chances of any more breakage are considerably reduced. If the breakage causes tearing of the skin, then clean the wound and quickly apply bandage. This will keep the break from extending any farther.
To prevent breaking of nails clip them straight instead of rounding the edge. The nails with a round edge can grow inwards and can cause cuts in the finger that way also. Due to the curve of the nail, the nail can get caught in fabrics etc and the chances of breakage are higher. Whenever you are working around the house, do not forget to wear gloves.
It is suggested that if you have to work in your garden that does not require the use of water, then you should wear thick cotton gloves. If you have to wash dishes, then you should wear vinyl gloves with thin cotton gloves underneath. The cotton glove acts as a cove for the long nails and also absorbs the sweat from the hands while you are working.
One of the ways to prevent breaking of nails is to make them less brittle. This can be achieved by massaging the nails with petroleum jelly or a hand cream that contains 10% urea. Application of these creams makes the nails softer and more flexible. Therefore they are able to get stretched to a limit and hence the chances of breakage are reduced. Avoid the use of nail polish remover. It has got solvent agents that make the nail dry and hence more brittle.