Artificial nails have been known to have several adverse effects on natural nails. Side-effects including physical nail abuse, chemical reactions and the ever-dreaded bacterial or fungal infections have been reported by patient users. These beauty must-haves are no longer just for special occasions, and the increasing amount of long-term daily wear has caused doctors to cringe with concern.
Nail fungus thrives on warm, moist environments in which bacteria can grow. Often a gap will develop between the artificial nail if bumped or jarred. In some cases, the bond between the real nail and the artificial nail is stronger than the bond between the real nail and nail bed, causing the nail bed to tear away and expose space for an infection to occur.
Nail fungus may also occur when artificial nails are left in place for a long period of time. This occurrence is heightened when a nail salon uses tools which were not properly sanitized. If infection is a concern, be sure to get evaluated by a dermatologist if any common symptoms become visible.
Many are well aware of these concerns of infection and still opt to visit their nearest beauty salons on a regular basis for beautification services. If this is you, expert dermatologist, Dr. Eric Bernstein, strongly suggests bringing your own sterilized set of utensils in order to minimize the chance catching any fungus which may have contaminated the instruments prior to your visit.
As early as October 2002, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published a Guideline for Hand Hygiene in Health-Care Settings, which recommends that healthcare workers “not wear artificial fingernails or extenders when having direct contact with patients at high risk.”