Tracy Roberts, 33, of Rockville, Md. has her toes nibbled on by a type of carp called garra rufa, or doctor fish, during a fish pedicure treatment at Yvonne Hair and Nails salon in Alexandria, Va. on Thursday July 17, 2008. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) ORG XMIT: VAJM101Do you have dry peeling skin or calluses on your feet? If a few state there is a new and controversial treatment currently offered by pedicurists—not podiatrists. Just like any regular pedicure, your feet are place in a tank of water, but instead of a pumice stone or razor used on your rough spots, tiny “doctor fish” swim around sucking the dead skin off the bottom of your feet. The fish have no teeth, so the procedure is completely painless, but perhaps ticklish for some. If you are feeling adventurous, this may be a therapy you are willing to try! Your skin consists of two layers: 1. Outer epidermis 2. Inner dermis. The epidermis grows from the inside out and at the outermost levels the skin cells are dead. These dead skill cells act as a barrier to the outside world and eventually will shed away. The fish take advantage of this normal function and eat away at the dead outer layer. This results in skin that is softer, smoother and more cosmetically pleasing. So, whoohoo, softer feet!... But is it safe? Some state cosmetology boards, including Florida, require tools be sterilized between uses. Since it’s impossible to sterilize fish, unless you want to add a snack after your pedicure, the fish are banned. For now you will need to leave Jacksonville, FL to receive such a treatment. However, if after receiving a pedicure at any local nail salon in the area, and your feet just don’t seem the same, the First Coast Foot and Ankle Clinic is here to help.
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