Why Your Fingernails Split In The Middle

Fingernails Split

Why are my nails splitting vertically?

There are many reasons your fingernails may split down the middle.

One common reason is that you are not getting enough nutrients in your diets, such as iron and zinc.

If you have a vitamin deficiency, it can also cause your nails to split.

Age may also be a factor, as older nails tend to be drier and more brittle.

If you are exposed to harsh chemicals or use excessive amounts of hand sanitizer, this can also cause your nails to split.

Occasionally, nail splitting can be a sign of a more serious health problem.

In this post, we’ll tell you all about why your fingernail split down the middle and how to prevent it from happening.

Keep reading to learn more!

Why are your fingernails split in the middle?

1. Malnutrition

Are you not getting enough nutrients?

If you are not getting enough nutrients in your diet, it can cause your fingernail to split down the middle.

Inadequate amounts of iron and zinc have been shown to result in brittle fingernails that easily split.

If your nails are brittle, try harder to get more vitamins and minerals in your diet.

Good sources of iron include dark green leafy veggies, clams, oysters, beef, turkey, and chicken liver.

Foods higher in zinc include seafood, beef, lamb, pork, chicken, and yogurt.

2. Vitamin C Deficiency

One common cause of fingernails splitting is vitamin deficiency.

Specifically, a lack of vitamin C can lead to this problem.

This is because vitamin C is needed for the formation and growth of your nails.

If you are not getting enough of this nutrient in your diet, your nails will be more likely to split.

You can prevent this from happening by eating foods that are high in vitamin C.

Some good sources of vitamin C include fruits such as:

  • Oranges
  • Strawberries
  • Pineapple
  • Vegetables such as broccoli and cauliflower.

3. Lack of Moisture

If your nails are constantly exposed to dry air, this can cause them to split.

This is because lack of moisture makes your nails more brittle and prone to breaking.

Try using a moisturizing cream or oil on your hands and nails regularly.

If you live in a dry climate, you may also want to consider using a humidifier in your home.

4. Fungal Infection

It’s not a secret that fungal nail infections can cause your nails to split.

Not only that, but this condition can lead to other problems such as discoloration, thickening, and separation of the nail from the nail bed (onychomycosis).

If you have a fungal infection, you can treat it by applying an over-the-counter antifungal cream or by taking an oral antifungal medication.

5. Protein Deficiency

Protein is needed for the formation of new cells.

This includes new nail cells, which grow at a rate of about 1 mm per month.

A lack of protein in your diet can cause your nails to become thin and brittle.

If you notice that your nails are getting thinner, try to eat foods that have a high-protein content.

Some good examples include meat, fish, dairy products, and nuts.

6. Folic Acid Deficiency

Folic acid is another nutrient that is important for nail growth.

Without it, your nails may become dry and break easily.

You can get folic acid from leafy green vegetables such as spinach, turnip, collard greens, and broccoli.

Legumes include lentils, black beans, and kidney beans.

You can also buy it as a supplement.

7. Psoriasis

Psoriasis causes red scaly patches on the skin.

It can also cause the nails to become pitted and discolored or even lift up from the nail bed.

There is no cure for psoriasis, but topical treatments and oral medication can help control it.

If you have psoriasis, see your doctor for treatment.

8. Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a condition in which your thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones.

It can slow the growth of your nails, which can make them brittle, leading to splitting in half or peeling.

Also, curved nails with swollen fingertips are often seen in people who have thyroid disease.

If you think you may have hypothyroidism, talk to your doctor about getting a blood test.

9. Age

Age can cause your nails to split.

This is because the skin around them tends to get thinner with time, which makes it more fragile.

As you may know, aging also slows down the growth of nails.

As a result, older people are more likely to have nails that are short, thin, and brittle.

How to prevent your nails from splitting

Consider these simple tips:

  • Keep your nails trimmed short and filed smooth
  • Apply a thin layer of oil or moisturizer to your nails and cuticles every day
  • Use a good quality nail polish and topcoat
  • Don’t bite your nails or use them as tools
  • Wear gloves when you’re doing chores that might damage your nails
  • Get regular manicures/pedicures to keep them healthy and strong
  • Drink plenty of water to keep your hands and nails hydrated


Now you know why your nails split in the middle.

If they are brittle, thin, or dry, you may want to try these simple tips.

Otherwise, you should visit your doctor to determine the cause of splitting nails and get a treatment plan.

Why Your  Fingernails  Split In The Middle