What is hangnail?

17 01 2010

A hangnail or agnail is a small, torn piece of skin near a fingernail or toenail. Hangnails are usually caused by dry skin or (in the case of fingernails) nail biting, and may be prevented with proper moisturization of the skin.

When attempting to remove a hangnail, additional skin may be painfully ripped off of its attachment if not broken properly. This may lead to a painful infection called paronychia. Therefore, hangnails should usually be cut using nail scissors or a nail clipper; biting them frequently makes it worse. People with a hangnail should be careful to cut it all off and rub hand lotion into the cuticles two to three times a day.

The term “hangnail” is misleading, as a hangnail is not an actual part of the nail. It is dead, dried skin, not nail, the latter being mostly made up of keratin, a tough fibrous protein. It can, however, also include a bit of nail, hanging loose from the rest of the body of the nail, attached to the nail bed.

Home treatment for a hangnail

A hangnail is the strip of skin that separates from the side of the cuticle. Simple home treatment can help prevent problems with hangnails.

  • Do not pull at or bite off a hangnail. This may cause the skin to rip.
  • Clip off the hangnail neatly with sharp, clean cuticle scissors.
  • Massage hand lotion or cream into your cuticles 2 to 3 times each day.

We are selling lemon cuticle oil stick @S$8. This will help with hangnail too when applied daily. please refer to “Items for sale” page for the detail on how to order.

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