Curiosities: How long do your nails grow per day and why?

By Eddy Montilla.

If you have children, you have noticed how often you cut their nails and, on the contrary, you cannot remember the last time you cut yours. That means age plays an important role when it comes to nail growth. But it is not the only one: health conditions, good diet, and other factors are involved too. In general, nails grow 0.01 millimeter per day in adults. This process, however, is not homogeneous. For example, fingernails grow faster than toenails and, if you are left-handed (as I am), your nails on the fingers of your left hand will grow faster and vice versa.

As for the second question (why?), observe your nails. The visible part of them are on the skin, but the growing part is coming out from under it. The root of the nails is located in a place called matrix (it bears no relation with the movie at all). Your fingernails and toenails are both basically composed of cells, to be more specific, of keratin, which is a protein that forms not only your nails in this case, but also feathers, hair, horns, etc. In the matrix, cells are born, grow and dye by the time you see them as nails (this explains why you do not feel pain when cutting them.). Since cells are growing there constantly, new cells push out the old ones that finally get packed and come out, turning into those nails that a lot of women usually treat with the utmost care.

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