Nowadays, people get their haircuts done by visiting barbershops. Many now consider it ‘uncivilised’ to employ the use of razor blades for this purpose, especially when one is a “big boy”. This however comes with a potential danger, which can be life-threatening.
There has recently been a rise in the number of recorded cases of Hepatitis B in Nigeria. This, and a host of other viruses like HIV, can be transmitted through the sharing of sharp objects like the clippers used in salons. Although the risk of transmission of blood-borne diseases through haircuts are likely to be low, there is still a need for us to protect ourselves and ensure maximum safety.
However, the situation of things in most of our salons, especially the local and/or cheap ones is appalling. Most of them do not sterilise their instruments before barbering new customers. This places these customers at risk of contracting various deadly viruses, especially if an infected previous customer had a cut during the process.
What should you do when next you intend to visit your barber?
Tell the barber to sterilise his instruments properly before barbering you. A better advice is that you should procure a personal clipper and carry it along anytime you visit the salon. This greatly reduces your risk of contracting diseases through this route.
If you suspect that you might have been exposed to any of these diseases, try to get tested immediately. You may also be able to get post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) for HIV. If taken within 72 hours of exposure, it can stop HIV from spreading in your body.