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One Grandmother asked: Is it safe for children to use nail polish or does this increase their likelihood of developing fungal nails?

Dr Karpati replies: I want to calm your fears about this. Fungal toenails in children is so very rare!   In fact, in North America the likelihood of your child developing nail fungus is less than 0.5%, with adolescents over 10 having a greater chance than those under 10!

The wonder of children is how quickly they heal when they get hurt and the stronger immune system they have just by the nature of their youth.  As we get older, our bodies are less capable of fending off these dermatophytes (the primary "bugs" causing onychomycosis).  In the cases where onychomycosis is diagnosed in children, it would not surprise me that they or someone in their family has a history of chronic Athlete's foot (tinea pedis), or one of the family members has severe onychomycosis.  Even then, it is hard to "catch"!   Does this mean I would take my daughter to any nail salon in town to have her nails done?  Anyone who has read my Southern Living article on this topic knows the answer to that!  Simply NO WAY. This has everything to do with hygiene on the part of these salons we go to!  However, taking their feet for a treat to a reputable salon where true care is taken to use a new soak tub for every client and where care is taken to sterilize their instruments?  I wouldn't hesitate a bit!  

I am the mommy of a 5 year old princess and she LOVES to do this!  It makes her feel pretty special and allows some of that precious (and calm!)  "bonding" time.  I will tell you that I like to use Dr. Remedy Nail Polish.  The tea tree oil and garlic bulb extract both have anti-fungal properties. Princess gets what she wants and hey, you do too!  Happiness all around!