The term ‘pitting’ refers to shallow or deep depressions, holes, or pits in your nails. They may even look like white spots or nicks.
“Little pits scattered across the nail plate can result from any inflammatory skin disorder, the two most common being psoriasis and alopecia areata [when the immune system attacks hair follicles]. The same inflammation that causes hair loss in alopecia and rashes in atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, and lichen planus can occur in the nail.”
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF), 50 percent of people with psoriasis experience nail changes. If nail pitting is caused by psoriasis, you may also notice abnormal nail growth and/or discoloration. Eventually, the nail may even loosen and detach from the nail bed.
If you’re dealing with nail issues related to an inflammatory condition, we recommends making an appointment with us. While psoriasis-induced nail issues, in particular, can be challenging to address with topical medications, derms can inject corticosteroids into the nail bed. Cosmetic approaches like nail scraping, filing, and polishing can also improve appearances.