If you have diabetes or psoriasis, you may have received conflicting information about getting manicures to the point where you have passed up one of your favorite indulgences. Read on to learn more information about how you can still get pampered at the nail salon in spite of your medical condition and what you might want to tell your nail technician:
Psoriasis and Manicures
Many people with psoriasis can be self conscious about their hands if their condition has affected their nails. Psoriasis can cause pitting and cracking of the nails, because there is damage to both the nail bed (the skin under the nail) and the nail matrix (the part of the nail under the cuticle area).
Sometimes nail technicians are hesitant to treat customers with psoriasis because they are not sure how to proceed or because they believe, incorrectly, that psoriasis is contagious. If your technician is not familiar with your condition, be sure to reassure them that you cannot communicate psoriasis to anyone else, as it's an autoimmune disorder. Also, it's perfectly fine to have a manicure, as long as it's gentle.
Advice for Your Manicure If You Have Psoriasis
Keeping your nails trimmed short is probably best if you are experiencing the effects of psoriasis on your hands, because the nails can't withstand being worn long. Clip or file the nails down gently, then buff them or apply a coat of clear polish to improve their appearance and uniformity.
To protect the nail matrix, your nail technician should refrain from clipping or pushing back the cuticles. They should also avoid any forceful cleaning underneath the nails, where the nail bed could be vulnerable.
If you have psoriasis, you may also suffer from psoriatic arthritis. If your nail salon offers a mild hand massage, this may make your hands feel better and relieve some joint pain. Be sure to tell the technician if anything hurts, however.
Concerns with Diabetes
If you have diabetes, there are two major concerns when getting a manicure. First, poor circulation can result in even small wounds becoming ulcerated or infected. Second, you may have diabetic neuropathy--loss of feeling in your peripheral extremities, including your hands, a big issue for many diabetics. A tiny cut could go unnoticed and turn into a serious medical problem.
Before getting a manicure, it's a good idea to consult your physician to find out what you should and should not do at the salon. Your nail technician will want to know about your level of diabetes control and may even ask for a doctors note to explain.
Manicures for Diabetics
When in doubt at the nail salon, always err on the side of caution. Avoid cuticle trimming or any other procedures that could cut the skin. These could cause future infection or precipitate bleeding problems if you are on anticoagulation therapy, like aspirin or warfarin.
You should also avoid hot paraffin treatments, as you could burn yourself and not even realize it. If your skin is fragile, make sure your technician avoids any overly aggressive rubbing, such as with massage or the application of moisturizing lotion.
Filing is preferable to cutting the nails, to avoid the risk of injury. A coat of clear polish makes your nails look nice while still allowing medical professionals to check your capillary refill time--a basic component of checking vital signs, especially if your have circulatory issues.
Diabetes and psoriasis are often reasons why people stop getting manicures, but they don't have to be. Follow the tips above, and consult your health care provider. Then share your information with your nail technician. Not only will your manicure benefit, it just might make it easier for the next person they serve with the same condition.Share