Why you should treat your feet to this…
If you’re like me, you love all the pampering that comes with a good pedicure. You also know that you’ve got to be selective about whom you choose to do the honours because if you’re not careful, a lot of ugly can result from prettifying your feet.
It’s been well documented that the rapid rise of cut-price nails salons across Spain has not been met by a commensurate increase of health and safety scrutiny, for instance, nail bars and salons are not regulated, which means that health and safety inspections are left to the sole discretion of local councils. It’s enough to make you think twice and instead putting your feet in the hands of a true professional. Yes, I’m talking about a medical pecicure or podiatrist.
Why podiatry isn’t just for the elderly
It’s tempting to associate “podiatry” with “old people” and the many foot problems that come with ageing. But over the last several years, podiatrists have had a surge of younger patients who have contracted fungal and bacterial infections from nail salons. Karin, podiatrist at HappyFeet in Coin – Malaga, says she treats a few such clients each week. “It’s absolutely huge,” she marvels.
Ingrown toenails caused by improper cutting and infections from skin that gets nicked when toenails are clipped are among the other unfortunate cheap-pedicure casualties. What really concerns her, however, are the dangers we can’t see – specifically, hepatitis and HIV, which can be transmitted by instruments that have been in contact with blood and have not been properly sterilized before use. “Hepatitis and HIV are extremely contagious,” “It’s not taken seriously how easily these things can be transferred. A fungal infection is physical – you see the symptoms quite quickly. You’re not going to know you’ve got hepatitis until months afterwards.” The risk of infection is high.
A reputable podiatrist will sterilise all instruments to kill bacteria, viruses, fungi and spores. To remove calluses “ I use sterile blades that are individually wrapped and thrown out after each use,”
You’ll also receive medical analysis with advice on the causes of your calluses, corns or bunions and recommendations for solutions.
A medical pedicure will set you back around 24 – 35 Euro.
What is a podiatrist pedicure like?
I visited Karin’s sparkling pracktice to find out. After reviewing my medical history, she physically examined my feet. Then, after emphasising that she prefers the term “foot treatment” to “pedicure”, she got down to business.
After clipping and cleaning up my toenails, she retrieved a fresh scalpel and began deftly scraping the skin on my heels, the soles of my feet and around my toenails with a touch so gentle, I barely felt it. Next, she buffed off my toenail polish and filed the nails down with a water drill – a bit like the one at the dentist – and, finally, she massaged my feet using Medical Foot Cream, which she calls “the best thing I’ve seen on the market for dry skin in 14 years.”
I’ve had many pedicures over the years and I’m not exaggerating when I say that my feet have never looked and felt so good. And my toenails were a revelation – clear and pink, like never-been-painted virgin nails! Karin recommends giving the toenails a break from polish one week out of every month to let them breathe and, prior to her treatment, this would have been novelty to me – like leaving the house in pyjamas. Now, I was proud to go au naturel!