There are a series of reasons that prompt the habit of nail-biting. It has several downsides and among them is the difficulty of growing them back to normal.
On average, bitten nails take about three to six months to grow back to their original shape and get recovered. However, this time duration depends upon the severity of the bitten nails.
What are the side effects of biting your nails?
1. Fungal nail infection
With constant biting, the nail bed that lies underneath your nails gets more vulnerable and exposed to the bacteria present not only in the outside environment but also in your mouth.
It causes one of the most common skin infections named paronychia around the skin of your nails. It leads to swelling, pain, pus-filled lumps, and redness. Moreover, this infection can last for weeks.
2. Ingrown nails
Our nails consist of a layer called the matrix, responsible for the health and shape of our nails. And biting will damage that layer, which makes nails more prone to deformities and ingrown nails.
Plus, chewing the sides of your nails creates the perfect atmosphere for developing ingrown nails. It, too, causes pain, redness, and swelling.
3. Cuticle damage
Nail biting can also affect the nail cuticle. It is placed above and around the nails and is responsible to protect the nail and make it grow healthy. But, a damaged cuticle will degrade the quality of your nails and cause inflammation and redness.
How long does it take for nails to grow after biting?
Bitten nails take a longer time to grow back than regular nails. If there is no damage caused to the nail bed, your nails will become normal again and start growing back, but it will be a slow and lengthy process.
To entirely become normal, the nails take between three-six months. However, one can see minimum healing and growth results a few days after stopping the biting habit.
How can you grow out bitten nails?
1. Apply cuticle oil
Choose one that has essential oils as it will hydrate the weakened nails. It will penetrate into your nail plate and restore the nail’s natural oils. It will help to grow them back quickly.
2. Apply base coat
Bitten nails are vulnerable, so applying a hardener or base coat to nails will ensure an extra layer of protection and prevent infections.
3. Use natural nail products
When in the process of recovering and growing out bitten nails, avoid applying harsh chemicals to them. The nails are already weak, and using such chemicals will weaken them more.
4. Add protein to diet
For repairing the health of nails to grow them out, a well-balanced diet is essential. Nails mainly consist of a protein known as Keratin. Hence, consuming protein-rich foods will help in the repairing process. Otherwise, you can also have keratin supplements if you lead a busy lifestyle.