Many patients question if pedicures are “podiatrist approved” - the answer is simple - yes, but with precautions to keep you safe and healthy. Read our tips below regarding safety issues and if you're using a commercial salon to perform your pedicure, do a little research before booking an appointment. Getting a pedicure today can involve much more than just painting your toenails - paraffin wax, massage, callus removal, masks and ingrown toenail removal.
What should you know:
First, verify that the nail technicians at the salon you use are certified by the state (licenses and photographs should be visible upon entering establishment.) Also, make sure the instruments the technicians are using and the foot bath you place your feet in are appropriately sterilized to kill germs. An autoclave is the only true way instruments are sterile. Instruments should be sealed in individual packs with an indicator strip and disposed of after using. UV lights and bins with solution do not properly clean instruments and rid them of bacteria from other individuals. We recommend finding a salon with an autoclave or bringing your own instruments.
Second, it is illegal for razors or blades of any sort to be used toe cut calluses or thickened, dry skin. Unfortunately, many places today continue to do so. If you have painful corns, calluses or wounds of any sort a medical professional should evaluate and care for. You should also never get a pedicure with an open wound of any sort.
Third, you might be tempted to shave your legs before getting a pedicure - don't. If you scrape or nick the skin prior to a pedicure, it provides an entry point for bacteria. This places you at higher risk for a foot infection.
Fourth, cuticles should not be cut as they protect the inside of the body from the outside world. Instead, technicians should push back cuticles and scrape away excess buildup. The use of a cuticle oil on a weekly basis will also decrease the buildup noted.
Fifth, nail technicians are not equipped nor properly trained to manage ingrown toenails. Seek professional care if you are having any pain before or as the result of a pedicure to prevent an infection.
Sixth, paraffin wax can harbor bacteria and fungus if hands and feet are being dipped into the basin. If you have circulatory or sensation issues such a neuropathy you are also at risk for sustaining a burn.
Lastly, gel manicures and pedicures are quite popular - make sure your nail salon has proper protective gloves and socks to protect your skin from the UV light. If you notice any suspicious freckles or moles seek the evaluation of a professional.
Our office in Manhasset offers a Medi-Spa to provide our patients safe manicures and pedicures. For more information on pedicure precautions and to schedule your appointment contact our office today.