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Calcium Deposits on Nails in Pregnancy

by
author image Rachel Nall
Rachel Nall began writing in 2003. She is a former managing editor for custom health publications, including physician journals. She has written for The Associated Press and "Jezebel," "Charleston," "Chatter" and "Reach" magazines. Nall is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at the University of Tennessee.
Calcium Deposits on Nails in Pregnancy
Consume enough calcium while pregnant to maintain your baby's health. Photo Credit zhaojiankang/iStock/Getty Images

Throughout pregnancy, your health and lifestyle are connected to your baby's. When you notice calcium deposits -- white spots -- on your fingernails, you may wonder what these spots mean and if they can affect your baby. Because calcium can affect your baby's development, it's important to be aware of what your fingernails could be trying to tell you.

Significance

Calcium deposits may appear as white spots or uneven whitened areas on the fingernail. The presence of these deposits can indicate a deficiency in calcium or another mineral, according to Nail Doctors, an informational website dedicated to nail health. If you experience a calcium deficiency, it’s possible your nails also may be very flexible because calcium gives the nails strength. If you experience calcium deposits, this can be a sign that you need to increase the amount of calcium in your daily diet.

Daily Requirements

Calcium is a mineral vital to your baby’s healthy development. This mineral builds bones and teeth in your baby. When you do not take in a sufficient amount -- which can be signaled by fingernail calcium deposits -- take steps to increase your daily intake. If you are older than 18, you should consume at least 1,000 mg of calcium per day, according to Baby Center. If you are 18 and younger, consume 1,300 mg of calcium per day.

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Calcium Sources

Treat your fingernail calcium deposits by increasing your calcium intake. Examples of good food sources include low-fat yogurt, ricotta cheese, skim milk, orange juice fortified with calcium, cheeses, spinach and tofu produced with calcium sulfate, according to Baby Center. If you choose to take a calcium supplement to increase your daily intake, remember that the body can absorb only 500 mg of calcium at a time. Spread taking calcium supplements throughout the course of the day to increase absorption. With time, this should help to reduce your calcium deposits.

Warning

Just as calcium deficiency can be harmful to your baby, excess calcium intake can be harmful as well, according to Baby Center. Too much calcium affects your body’s ability to absorb iron and zinc and can lead to kidney stones. You should not take or eat a total of more than 2,500 mg of calcium per day. If you experience constipation after consuming high-calcium foods or supplements, this can indicate you are taking in too much calcium.

Outlook

Calcium deficiency affects not only your baby and your nail health but also your health later in life, according to the March of Dimes, a nonprofit organization dedicated to infant health. If your baby cannot draw sufficient calcium from your daily intake, your body will begin drawing on the stored calcium in your bones. This can reduce your bone density -- an occurrence that can lead to osteoporosis, a condition where your bones break easily.

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