Did you receive a gift certificate for a professional pedicure during the holiday season? Are you planning to treat yourself during the new year? Most salons are clean and safe, but the risk of unattractive, unpleasant infections is real. Bacteria, viruses that cause plantar warts, and toenail fungus are all transmitted through poor public hygiene.
With a bit of education and some care, you can minimize your risk of infection. Here are some steps that James M. McKee, DPM, FACFAS recommends you follow:
- Begin by looking around the salon when you enter. Employees’ licenses should be posted on the wall and must be up to date. Don’t be fooled by fancy décor. The facility itself should look clean and tidy. Employees without customers should be cleaning foot basins, emptying trash cans, and sweeping the floor clean of debris.
- Nail technicians should keep customers safe by using new, disposable protective items such as surgical gloves and foot bath liners for each customer.
- Germs can enter the body through small nicks and cuts in the skin. Don’t shave your legs before a pedicure. The nail tech won’t mind a bit of stubble.
- If possible, invest in your own tools and bring them with you to your appointment. It’s the best way to avoid contamination.
- If you don’t want to purchase your own tools, double check that the nail salon uses proper sterilization techniques. Tools should be stored in a glass jar filled with a turquoise-colored disinfectant. This is preferred to less effective UV sterilization techniques.
- Be sure that the nail tech trims our toenails with a clipper, rather than a scissors and that he or she trims straight across to prevent ingrown toenails.
- Never allow the nail tech to use sharp blades around your feet. Cuticle nippers and callus-removing graters can create the small cuts that invite infections to enter your body.
When left unaddressed, foot infections are not only unattractive, but they can also lead to greater foot health problems. If you have a concern about the health and well-being of your feet, ankles, and lower legs, the best thing to do is to see a podiatrist right away. Dr. James M. McKee brings decades of specialized education and experience to each patient visit. He will carefully examine your feet, accurately diagnose any current or potential problems, create an effective treatment plan, and provide thorough aftercare. Click here or call 410-224-4448 to schedule your appointment at Podiatry Group of Annapolis, P.A.’s comfortable and convenient Solomon’s Island Road in Annapolis, MD office today.