Do Vertical Ridges on Nails Mean A Vitamin Deficiency?

Having vertical ridges on your nails can be unpleasant but are they a cause for concern? You have access to important clues about your health right at the tips of your fingers. Conditions ranging from stress to kidney and thyroid disease can cause changes in your nails. Vertical nail ridges, which are fairly common, extend from the cuticle to the tip of your nail. While vertical nail ridges may sometimes reveal a nutrient deficiency, they commonly occur as a normal sign of aging. Just like your skin, hair, and bones, your nails undergo changes as you age.

But if you are still concerned about your health through your nails here are the best 5 things to know about vertical ridges on nails vitamin deficiency


Deficiencies That Show Through Nails

A deficiency in vitamin A, or the minerals calcium and zinc may cause ridges to appear on your nails.

  • The recommended intake of vitamin A for adults is 700 to 900 micrograms per day.
  • The recommended intake of calcium is 1,000 milligrams. Women over 50 need slightly more, about 1,200 milligrams, to help guard against bone loss.
  • The recommended intake of Zinc for adults is 8 to 11 milligrams of zinc each day.
Symptoms Your Nails are Showing Medical Course

Brown Vertical Ridges or Stripes



Brown vertical stripes may be a sign of melanoma. While you may think the deadliest type of skin cancer always shows up as a mole or dark spot, it can actually start in the nail. Get any brown pigmentation on your nail checked out by a dermatologist.

Horizontal Ridges

Deep horizontal ridges or depressions, known as Beau’s lines, are more alarming. They indicate something caused the nail to stop growing temporarily. Horizontal ridges could indicate trauma to the nails or an underlying health condition. Get those checked by a doctor.

Nail Care



Taking proper care of your nails is your first line of defense: Moisturize them by applying nail oil, vitamin E oil, coconut oil, or olive oil to your nails. This will help prevent ridges from forming in the first place.

Nail Polish

Going without nail polish keeps drying chemicals off your nails, prevents the staining that some polishes cause, and allows sunlight to reach your nails which can improve their overall health and appearance of your nails

Most of the time, ridges in fingernails are normal signs of aging. However, it’s important to pay attention to fingernail ridges and other nail changes. These might be the first signs of a serious medical problem.