Pedicures: A Podiatrist Shares When Should You AVOID Them

Pedicures are a wonderful way to treat yourself, and high on the priority list for many women who enjoy wearing sandals during the warm summer months.  However, care needs to be taken when decided where and if you should get a pedicure to avoid complications.

How to Pick the Perfect Place to Get a Pedicure

No matter how good the deal is, avoid getting a pedicure at a location that doesn't seem quite 'right'.  If you're questioning the sanitary practices of a place as you walk through the door, just walk back out- it's not worth the risk.  Likewise, follow these guidelines:

1. Ask them not to use bubbles or the whirlpool feature in the foot bath/soak.  Those little jets can harbor nasty fungus and viruses, which could leave you with a case of toenail fungus or plantars warts.  Every salon should run a santitation cycle between clients to avoid this problem, but some may not run it long enough to be effective.  

2. Make sure that metal tools are sterilized between each client.  The tools should be soaking in a disinfectant, much like they would at a hair salon.

3. Ask the pedicurist to cut toenails straight across to avoid a trip to the podiatrist to treat ingrown toenails.

When You Should Avoid Pedicures

While most people can get a pedicure whenever they feel like it, there are some who should avoid pedicures.  We've detailed out some scenarios where individuals should avoid seeking a pedicure below:

1. Diabetic foot issues:  if you have neuropathy or diabetes, reconsider getting a pedicure, particularly any that involve filing corns and calluses.  People with diabetes should always go to their podiatrist for foot related issues to avoid infection & ulceration associated with diabetic foot complications.

2. If you suspect you have toenail fungus:  if your toenails are thick, yellow, raised, or otherwise not normal looking, you likely have toenail fungus.  You absolutely MUST avoid pedicures if you have a skin or nail fungal infection. It's highly contagious, and will spread to others at the pedicure salon you go to- that may even be where you picked it up in the first place!

3. Immune compromised:  because there's potential bacteria, fungus, and viruses in pedicure salons, those who have compromised immune systems should refrain from going to get a pediicure.

4. After injury and/or when the nail is falling off:  runners and athletes injure their toes frequently due to the level of abuse their feet taken during exercise, and sometimes that causes an injury to the nailbed that may make the nail fall off.  If the nailbed is DAMAGED and sensitive, you should avoid getting a pedicure.  If the nail has already fallen off and is beginning to regrow, you're in the clear.

If you have foot pain caused by injuries or infection contact our podiatrist office in Southfield MI for a foot exam. 

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