Caring for Fingernails


finger nails, hand showing thumb raised and four fingers,nail clippers clipping the nail of the pointing finger

Caring for Fingernails for someone elderly

I cut the finger nails of one of my clients today who has poor eyesight and arthritic fingers. This person has longish nails but they grow close to the finger tips. I used curved nail scissors, with the curve pointing upwards to remove the majority of the excess nail.Then I used an emery board to file them closer to the finger tip and smooth off.

I was alarmed to see the amount of accumulated “matter” under the nails and obviously removed this and advised on the use of a nail brush on a regular basis.The removed matter was a combination of food, skin and goodness knows what (use your imagination).

When providing personal care of this manner to an elderly person it is important to emphasise the importance of good hygiene whilst also not seeming to be critical or condescending.

Clean finger nails look nicer and prevent the chances of bacterial infections and stomach upsets.


Award-winning blogger and care columnist for Devon Life magazine, Caron also campaigns for recognition of the needs elderly people and their carers. Designer and creator of the award-winning Dementia Assistance Cards which are free to all, and helping thousands of people globally Caron is passionate and committed to making a difference

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