You visit a pedicure salon to get eye-catching digits and some relaxation in the process. But you could be picking up something else - a fungal infection.
According to a research published in the Journal of Chemical Health and Safety, 52 percent of the participants who visited a salon three times a year experienced fungal infection symptoms, such as whitish to yellow discoloration, distorted shape, and dark coloration of nails.
Podiatrists at Foot Care Specialists, PC are dedicated to helping you remain healthy by reducing your chances of getting infections. We’ve gathered eight tips to help you avoid getting fungal infections during your next visit to any pedicure salon. Continue reading to learn more.
Scope out your salon
It’s important to pre-screen your pedicure salon first to make sure the instruments used are thoroughly cleaned using hospital-grade disinfectant and sterilized.
Therefore, visit your pedicure salon early. As you’re waiting for your turn, watch and see what the person giving the pedicures does. Ensure they use new instruments for each client, then clean and disinfect their tools thereafter.
If you can’t tell, please ask about the cleaning procedures employed. Most hospitals use autoclaving process to sterilize surgical tools. If they use it, you’re good to go.
Be careful with open wounds
If you have an open wound on your foot, don’t put it into a bath or bowl. Additionally, salon technicians should not cut or tear your skin during a pedicure. Microorganisms in foot bowls or bath can penetrate through a cut and cause infections, warns the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Sometimes during a pedicure, the skin may get cut. If you put it inside the bowl, naturally occurring bacteria from the legs can get inside the cut and can cause an internal skin infection.
Get the right tools and procedures
It’s prudent to ask your podiatrist to avoid cutting toenails too short. According to a study published in the Journal of Physical Biology, too much trimming can result in infections, such as ingrown toenails, pincer nails and spoon-shaped nails.
Also, some pedicure salons use rough tools that resemble metal files or cheese graters to remove calluses, dead or dry skin. Such tools can tear the skin making it susceptible to microorganisms that can cause fungal infections. Soft tools, such as brushes or sandpaper, are highly recommended because they’re softer on the skin.
Bring your own pedicure kit
Since most salons allow clients to bring their own personal tools, you can carry your pedicure kit. Remember to soak them in ethyl alcohol or run them through the dishwasher at a high temperature at home. In addition, make sure they are sterilized at the salon.
Double check the nail polish
Keep in mind that the brush inside your preferred polish at your salon has probably touched hundreds of other toes. If you relish the spontaneity of choosing a polish from a salon’s offerings, avoid the half full or worn out bottles. If they’re half full or worn out, you can imagine how many times the brush has been dipped back after touching other client’s nails.
Forego the cuticle trim
Cuticle trim is a pedicure procedure that removes the top layer of skin under the toenail before applying polishes. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, this step often removes a protective layer, leaving your skin vulnerable to any germs in the polish or on the tools used, especially if you get cut.
If you must get the cuticle trim, request for a swab of alcohol before the procedure and after. You can also request your podiatrist to push the skin back instead of removing it so that you can still get a smooth line of polish below your nail.
Check for certification
A certified pedicure salon means that the facility met the health, safety, education, and other qualification requirements. Although demanding credentials may sound strange, you should be able to see updated certifications at various workstations. In some cases, the certifications are displayed by the register or in the waiting area.
Consider foot care in a podiatrist’s office
Foot care for people fort a high risk of infection should be done in a podiatrist’s office. These include people suffering from immune problems, heart disease, poor circulation, diabetes, and those undergoing chemotherapy. Individuals with these conditions don’t heal like others and often don’t realize when they are cut because these diseases can cause numbness.
Do you want to learn more about fungal infections in a pedicure salon or get a pedicure treatment? Call Footcare Specialists, PC to request an appointment with one of our podiatrists in Dedham and Quincy, Massachusetts today.