Around 4.4 million Americans are infected with chronic hepatitis and are completely unaware of their condition. New findings reveal that you may be at risk if you visit nail salons that do not utilize proper cleaning procedures. Luckily, there are a number of key signs to watch for in order to help reduce your risk of coming into contact with contaminated salon supplies.
With 95% of hepatitis B cases showing no symptoms, it is oftentimes a challenge to diagnose the disease. The concern is that the disease may go unnoticed until symptoms become extremely severe, oftentimes leading to near death. That is what happened to one salon customer named Nancye Swanson, who reports almost dying from hepatitis B after picking it up at a salon during a pedicure. As a result of improper cleaning procedures and re-using the same beauty tools, Swanson’s skin began to turn yellow and she developed flu-like symptoms.
Salons Reusing Beauty Tools, Spreading Hepatitis B
After examining the signs, her doctor told her that she had developed hepatitis B, and it was contracted while she was getting a pedicure.
Dr. Robert Gish, a clinical professor at UC San Diego, is assisting the Vietnamese government in halting the spread of hepatitis B through drafting a new health policy involving the cleaning procedures of beauty salons.
“A lot of these places use sharp instruments and they could be re-using those,” said Dr. Gish.
In order to protect yourself from salons not following proper cleaning procedures, there are a number of things you can do. Initially, it is important to ensure that your salon’s license is clearly posted — this is the first step in identifying your salon as a reputable and clean establishment. Secondly and most importantly, make sure that scissors and clippers are being disinfected after each use and only disposable files should be used. The same process should be used for the pedicure bath and each suction screen in the tubs. This is where the harmful bacteria is located. In addition, it is recommended you take your own polish.
It is important to be aware of the salon you frequently visit, and know that it is a clean establishment that follows proper cleaning procedures. Furthermore, it is always a great time to power up your immune system to fight deadly bacteria and viruses.