Looking after your nails and teeth

Cancer and treatment can have a big effect on your body. You might notice a change in your teeth and nails, so here are some tips so you can keep on feeling like you.


Brittle and ridged nails can be another effect of chemo. Keep them moisturised and once treatment finishes, your nails should become stronger again.

  • Try out a simple nail oil or non-perfumed hand cream which can be found in the health and beauty sections of most pharmacies and supermarkets
  • Use a water-based polish, or buff them instead for a nice shine
  • Avoid using fake or gel nails during treatment.

Dental care

One of the more miserable side effects of cancer can be the way it affects what’s going on in your mouth. If you have painful ulcers, one of the best things you can do to help is having a good oral hygiene routine.

  • Keep your mouth clean by brushing gently every morning and night, between meals if possible
  • Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and an interdental brush or floss to get between teeth
  • Cut down on the sugary drinks and food
  • See your dentist regularly and tell them about your treatment and if it’s affected your teeth.

Published June 2017
Next review 2020

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