What Causes Waves in Fingernails Might Be Symptoms for Diseases

Waves in fingernails should not be ignored. It can be an early symptom of several disorders. Waves in fingernails can be followed by other symptoms, such as changing in nail color.

Here are several disorders that related to waves in fingernails.

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1. Onychomycosis or Nail Infection

What causes waves in the fingernails might be onychomycosis triggered by fungal infections called dermatomycosis. For those living in tropical countries, it is not surprising that we may be attacked by this disease. Hot and humid air increase the possibility of developing fungal infections. There are several factors about what causes waves in fingernails:

  • Aging.
  • History of diseases in the families.
  • Trauma.
  • Does not maintain the self-hygiene and the environment as well. Read also: dangers of not washing hands.
  • Hot climate.
  • Low immune system.

Infection causes waves in fingernails. In severe infections, the fingernails will seem paled or even thicker. The fingernails are potentially detached and then there will be sore under our nails.

Forms and Causes

There are four forms and causes of onychomycosis:

  • Candida onychomycosis. Candida will attack our nails and occurs because our hands are often soaked in the water.
  • Proximal subungal onychomycosis (PSO). It occurs when fungal penetration occurs in the nail plates through proximal nails.
  • Superficial white onychomycosis. The main cause is invasion of fungal in the superficial area of our nail plates causing white spots at our nails.
  • Distal subungal onychomycosis. The cause is Trichophyton rubrum and usually attacks nails and under nail plates. 

Wavy Nails Treatments

Onychomycosis can be cured either medically or naturally. Here are several ways to consider:

  • Surgical therapy. Doctor will usually take surgery using scalpel.
  • Systemic medicine, such as terbinafine, itraconazole, and fluconazole.
  • Tropical medicine, such as ciclopirox olamine, amorolfine, and bifonazole urea.
  • Lavender oil. It can be used to heal fungal infections in the nails by applying it in the nail for two or three times a day.
  • Soaking the nails in the warm water added with several drops of disinfectant. Put your nails for five to seven minutes then lift and dry it properly. Soaked the nails into the alcohol, and rub for 20 minutes. Do it twice a day: morning and night before sleeping. 

2. Lichen Planus

What causes waves in fingernails? It might be lichen planus.


There are several risk factors, such as:

  • Infection in Type C Hepatitis.
  • Several metal, chemical, or pigmented substances.
  • Influenza vaccine.
  • Type B hepatitis vaccine.
  • Ibuprofen included anti-inflammation non-steroid drugs.
  • Malaria drugs.
  • Several drugs for curing arthritis, hypertension, or other cardiac diseases.  

The Harmful Effects of Wavy Nails 

If not treated, there are two harmful effects, such as:

  • Erosive lichen planus – A long-term chronic disease and triggers ulcers causing uncomfortable to the person. Or worse, there might be burning sensation too.
  • Pigmentation in the skin – It occurs when the rashes caused by lichen planus are already clear and the infected skin area will change its color. It can cause the person becomes not confident with their appearance.

Wavy Nails Treatments

Drugs are given to ease the symptoms because it is known as incurable disease. In normal skin, this disease will last for several months or years and then automatically healed. There are several treatments to consider:

  • Retinoids. It is easily used because you only have to rub it into the infected area. Prohibited to pregnant women!
  • Corticosteroid. It can decrease the inflammation with doctor’s prescriptions and for short-term treatment only.
  • Acitretin. It is conducted if the lichen planus is already severe. There will be prescription and must not be consumed along with other drugs.
  • Radiation therapy. There are two types of radiation therapy: UVB and PUVA or psoralen and Ultraviolet A.
  • Non-steroid cream. It is usually used to decrease immune system activity so the rashes can be reduced.
  • Antihistamine. This drug can be used to ease the symptoms of itchy appeared in the skin.

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Wavy Nails Prevention

Lichen planus is not a disease that easily prevented but luckily, there are several things you can do:

  • Follow a healthy and balance dietary tips. Means, eat dishes with high nutrients, such as fruit and vegetables. Read also: dangerous foods for stomach.
  • Quit smoking. Smoking can be harmful for skin health.
  • Quit drinking alcohol. Drinking alcohol is also harmful for skin.

3. Psoriasis

The next thing what causes waves in fingernails is psoriasis and a long-term chronic disease. The symptoms are rashes, exfoliated, thicken, and scaly. Psoriasis also attacks our scalp, elbow, and lower part of the body such as back and knee.

What causes waves in fingernails?

Person with psoriasis will experience a changing in their skin cell for few days only. Then, it will lead to stacking of the skin cell and it makes the skin thicker. In normal cases, death skin cell will change to the new cells in few weeks.

There are several risk factors of psoriasis, such as:

  • The usage of certain drugs.
  • Skin injury.
  • Throat infection.
  • Family history. 

Wavy Nails Medicine

Treatment for psoriasis should be taken after the symptoms have been diagnosed.

  • Injection. Take it when psoriasis is already severe. When the immune system reaction is already high, injection will be conducted to decrease the reaction as well as the inflammation.
  • Drugs. It is taken when the symptoms are severe, such as acitretin, cyclosporine, and methotrexate.
  • Ointment. This medicine will be the first one to be given by the doctor and commonly kind of cream or ointment. It can slower a quick skin cell production. For mild to moderate disease, ointment will be given, such as dithranol, coal tar, calcineurin inhibitors, corticosteroid, and analog vitamin D.
  • Phototherapy. This method is commonly used as alternative but you cannot do this by yourself. Means, you have to do it under the doctor’s supervision because it involves the usages of Ultraviolet B and A for several minutes.

What causes waves in fingernails can be symptoms for nail disease. Therefore, it would be better to check up to ease the symptoms.

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