Home Nail diseases Causes, treatment and preventions of purple nails

Causes, treatment and preventions of purple nails

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Nails are generally colorless. However, they reflect people’s natural complexions, which can be pinkish or darker depending on the phenotype. The change of color in the nail can be the warning of the appearance of some condition in the organism.

Nails can acquire a purple color due to different factors, ranging from changes in eating habits or trauma that give rise to the appearance of a hematoma. If you see that your nails are of this tonality, you should go immediately to the doctor. He will be in charge of identifying the cause that is causing this color change.

Continue reading this article by FastlyHealto to find out why they get purple nails and what to do about it.

Causes of purple nails

Purple nails on your hands and feet can be due to different causes that can affect your health at a particular moment. Some of them are the following:

Purple nails from cold

Weather can affect blood vessels—cold causes blood vessels to contract as the body traps heat.

The purple coloration of the nails is produced, in this case, by the decrease in blood flow to the extremities.


When there is an iron deficiency, anemia is generated. The blood does not carry enough oxygen, causing a bluish or purple color to the fingernails.

Hematoma subungueal

The heavy blows on the nails of the hands and feet can make your color varies from purple to black.

A subungual hematoma may appear, which is bleeding that occurs under the nail after trauma, blow, or crushing of the same with a blunt object. The accumulation of blood between the skin and the pin generates its purple hue.

Tennis finger

Wearing tight shoes or suffering an injury while playing a sport, such as a game of tennis, can cause purple toenails, which are more common among athletes.

Circulatory disorders

Poor blood circulation can cause a bluish color because the body is not oxygenated enough and begins to accumulate CO2. In this way, the nails can turn purple.

Heart and lung problems

Purple nails can be due to heart or lung disorders. The alteration in question may be accompanied by other symptoms such as:

  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Chest pain
  • Palpitations

If that were not enough, lung diseases could also cause purple coloring of the nails. Among them are:

Raynaud’s disease

Purple nails and cold hands characterize this disease. It affects the blood vessels located in the hands and feet. When there is cold or stress, the blood vessels narrow, causing the skin not to have a good blood flow. For this reason, the fingers lose their natural color and take on a blue or purple color.

Severe anxiety

This type of anxiety can disrupt circulation. In times of high stress, the body can direct blood to the heart, legs, fingers, and toes, resulting in the nails’ bluish or purple discoloration.

Treatment of purple nails

If this is your case and you have purple nails, you should go to the doctor to indicate the treatment to follow since this will depend on the cause and the severity of the symptoms accompanying this alteration.

If the cause of purple nails is an infection, the doctor will recommend using antibiotic medication locally or orally, depending on the symptoms you present.

If the cause is Reynaud’s disease, the doctor will recommend maintaining body heat accompanied by skincare to control its appearance.

Often, purple nails disappear on their own without medical treatment. If, in your case, this does not happen, you should go to your trusted doctor.

How to prevent the appearance of purple nails

To avoid the appearance of purple nails, as far as possible, keep these recommendations in mind:

  • Avoid exposure to cold.
  • Apply heat and massage the extremities. With this, you will activate blood circulation.
  • If your hands are often cold, squeeze a rubber ball between them to warm them back.
  • Exercise daily to keep your heart healthy and with good blood flow.
  • Eat a healthy diet rich in fiber, fruits, and vegetables.
  • Apply relaxation techniques to control anxiety and stress.
  • If you are an athlete, wear loose-fitting, comfortable shoes.

This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Why do purple nails get, we recommend that you enter our Skin, hair, and nails category.

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