Fingernails and toenails are also considered “skin,” and like your skin and hair, are likely to change during pregnancy. Some changes you may like, some you won’t. Pregnancy hormones will help your nails grow faster. On the downside, your nails are likely to break, peel, become softer and more brittle, and form tiny grooves along the base of the nail. Some pregnant women feel their nails get stronger. To give your nails the special care they need during pregnancy:
- Take gelatin capsules – they’re safe during pregnancy.
- Cut your nails frequently and keep them short so they don’t get a chance to break unevenly on their own. If you’ve always loved your long nails, it may help to remind yourself that shorter nails make it easier to care for and caress the sensitive skin of your baby.
- Apply moisturizing and protective creams to your hands and nails at bedtime.
- Avoid nail polishes, which can damage your nails, and acetone-containing polish removal products, which may not only harm your sensitive nails but also give off potentially harmful fumes. If you must chemically treat and color your nails, do so outdoors, or at least in a well-ventilated room.
- Wear protective gloves when washing dishes, using household cleaners, and gardening.