At this time of year women love to go to nail salons or spas to get pedicures. And I don't blame them. It's a relaxing, wonderful treat to have an expert rub your feet and paint your nails. Unfortunately not all nail salons are very scrupulous when it comes to cleaning their tools or having a sanitary foot soak. Some spas have special tubs that fill with water but contain tubing that can't be cleaned.
The last thing you want from a relaxing pedicure is a nasty bacterial or fungal nail infection.
As a Seattle podiatrist, here are my recommendations to increase the likelihood that your toenails will stay beautiful and fungus free at a salon.
Find out what kind of whirlpool they use for soaking your feet. It must be the pipe-less kind such as Sanijet to ensure there is no tubing that can't be cleaned.
Ask if nail implements are cleaned in an autoclave. Autoclaves are used in medical practices to clean their instruments using steam and pressure to eliminate any germs. Many salons use liquid disinfectants, but these only work if they are left to soak for at least 20 minutes.
If you can't check out the cleaning procedures ahead of time, bring your own nail implements so you are guaranteed they are sanitary.
Never allow them to cut your cuticles. Your cuticles are meant to protect your nails from bacterial or fungal invasion. Cutting them takes away that protection.
Make sure that your technician cuts your nails straight across, to prevent your toenails from becoming ingrown.
Finally, if you have diabetes or have a compromised immune system you need to avoid nail salons altogether. Nail infections can turn into ulcers and can be potentially life threatening.
If you have fungal toenails, call us today at 206-368-7000 for an appointment. You can also request an appointment online.
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Seattle foot and ankle specialist, Dr. Rion Berg offers foot care for patients with bunions, heel pain, diabetes, fungal toenails, ingrown nails, and surgical solutions when needed to residents of Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Shoreline, Lake Forest Park, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and other surrounding suburbs.