Treating yourself to one of life’s simple pleasures should not result in pain. Sadly, when that simple pleasure is a manicure or pedicure at a nail salon, pain, discomfort, and other health problems can follow you home in the form of nail fungus.
Nail fungus is a common condition, especially toenail fungus. The reason it is so common is that fungus is highly contagious and easily transferred from people and objects. This includes the technicians giving mani/pedis and the tools they use to give them.
Nail fungus may cause your nails to become discolored, thick, brittle, and separated from the nail bed. Fungus is a living, growing organism, which means that it may take some time between the time you come into contact with the fungus and the time symptoms become visible.
The Problem With Nail Salons and Fungus
Millions of women (and men) get their nails treated in professional salons every year. Most come into the salon and leave the salon with no problem and beautiful, healthy nails. But the sheer volume of people who go to nail salons means that some of these people may unknowingly bring nail fungus into the salon. Those folks sit in chairs and are treated with brushes, towels, and tools, all of which will be used over and over and over again. The manicurists doing their work may also serve scores of customers in a day.
All of this sharing means that nail fungus and nail salons often go hand-in-hand – unless proper hygiene, washing, sterilization, and sanitation is used which can keep the risk to a minimum. However, it can be difficult to know whether a given salon is doing what it should be doing to keep nail fungus from growing and spreading.
How to Choose a Safe Nail Salon
In some places, including here in South Florida, it seems like nail salons are as ubiquitous as Starbucks. With so many salons offering substantially similar services, the choice of salon often comes to down to price, convenience, atmosphere, and customer service. When it comes to safety and hygiene, most folks may assume that all of these professionals and their facilities are meeting their obligations and maintaining a clean and healthy environment.
But that is not the case.
So, how can you know whether the salon you are considering is up to snuff? Here are a few simple steps you can take to minimize the likelihood of acquiring nail fungus from your manicure or pedicure:
- Do your research. Check to see that the salon and its staff are licensed. In Florida, manicurists and pedicurists must be licensed by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. You can look up licenses here. Also, look at consumer reviews or complaints online to see if others have had health issues with the salon.
- Ask questions. Call or visit the salon and ask them about their hygiene protocols and the efforts they make to minimize fungus and other hazards. Try to find a salon that uses an autoclave to disinfect tools and instruments and that requires its technicians to wear latex gloves.
- Y.O.T. Bring your own tools to the salon and have the technician use those instead of the ones they share with other customers.
JAWS podiatry: Hollywood, Florida Foot and Ankle Specialists
The experienced and skilled podiatrists at JAWS podiatry in Hollywood, Florida offer the highest degree of care in a welcoming, comfortable environment. Please contact us online or call us at (954) 922-7333 to schedule a consultation.