• Fingernails and toenails may actually provide clues to other underlying medical conditions. If you notice whitening of your nails combined with other symptoms, schedule a visit with your health care provider.


    Leukonychia is a disorder of the nails that causes straight lines of whitening. The whitening may occur across the entire nail or only on part of the nail, and may occur on one to all nails.


    Congenital leukonychia is present from birth but not necessarily hereditary. Congenital conditions are thought to develop during fetal development.


    Ingestion of heavy metals or arsenic may cause leukonychia and could be a sign of poisoning.


    Heart or liver disease may cause nail whitening, as well as malnutrition and vitamin deficiency.

    Other Causes

    Continual picking at the nails or nail beds may cause whitening. Injury, such as a smashed finger near the nail, may also cause the nail to whiten in streaks.



    National Institute of Health

  • Poison, medical conditions, picking or it can be congenital.

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