Every field of work entails a different set of risks, even professions that don’t seem all too dangerous to the casual consumer. For those who work in nail salons, there are a number of serious health hazards presented by many of the chemicals used on a daily basis that must be recognized. If you or someone you love works in a nail salon, it is crucial to take appropriate steps to protect your ongoing health from toxic exposure.

Depending on the salon’s focus, there are a number of very toxic chemicals that may be used in your workplace. Each location is required to maintain a relevant Material Safety Data Sheet for all of the various chemicals used, for the safety of employees. An MSDS contains basic information about each chemical, how to safely handle and store it, and how to respond if there is an emergency involving the chemical.

If you are a nail salon worker, there are a number of steps that you can and should take to minimize your risk of toxic exposure. Some of the most basic safety practices that are often overlooked include keeping your station and the salon in general well-ventilated, to ensure the safe circulation of fresh air. Similarly, you should always wear and use appropriate safety equipment, such as nitrile gloves and face masks to minimize your exposure to cumulative toxic exposure.

Still, even when taking proper precautions, you may become ill due to long-time exposure, or even a single incident of overexposure. If you have been injured at the workplace, it is wise to seek the help of an experienced attorney who can assist you in making the most of your worker’s compensation claim. An experienced attorney will fight on your behalf to see that you are not mistreated by your employer’s insurance provider, and that your rights remain protected.

Source: Occupational Safety & Health Administration, “Stay Healthy and Safe While Giving Manicures and Pedicures: A Guide for Nail Salon Workers,” accessed Jan. 20, 2017