Many of us have seen a dermatologist for various reasons, whether it was acne, psoriasis, eczema, warts or a mole check. A dermatology appointment can be a very satisfying experience and help you tackle multiple problems. There are several tips that I, as a dermatologist, would like to share with you so that you can optimize your visit.
WHY DO I NEED A DERMATOLOGIST?
After completing their 4 year medical degree and an internship, dermatologists receive 3 more years of training dedicated to your skin, hair and nails. Dermatologists dedicate their skills and energy to treating many common conditions of the skin including acne, rashes, rosacea, psoriasis, warts and several forms of skin cancer. Dermatologists can use their skills to diagnose possible problems that can range from minor to life threatening. When dealing with concerning skin condition, it is beneficial to your health to see a medical doctor who specializes in these conditions and can provide safe and effective treatment from right inside the office.
Whether you are exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays or an indoor tanning bed, tan skin is a sign that your skin has been damaged. As this skin damage builds, you increase your risk of many skin conditions including several types of skin cancer.
The sun is good for many things like providing light, helping plants grow and warming the earth. One thing the sun is not good for, is your skin. The sun’s ultraviolet A (UVA) rays are responsible for wrinkles, age spots and tans. Ultraviolet B rays (UVB) are known for causing sunburns. Both types of UV rays can cause skin cancer. These rays reach the earth every day, even on cloudy days UV rays can damage the skin in many ways. It is important to stay protected when in the sun as UV rays have lasting effects that many times don’t catch up to you until later in life.
One of the most dangerous effects of sun damage is skin cancer. Skin cancer may not always present as an irregular looking mole. There are several different types of skin cancer that everyone should be aware of. These include:
We love to see our children thrive and grow; however, some of you have noticed that your kids have itchy skin … to the point that they cannot stop scratching themselves!
While we can’t tell exactly who will develop eczema,
there are predictive factors that we can rely on.
Why is my child always itchy and scratching herself? Your child could be suffering from a condition called childhood eczema, also known as a topic dermatitis.
Acne can be merely an annoyance, or it can plague your life. Millions of teens are afflicted with acne; which can range from a breakout here and there, to the cystic and scarring variety. It can negatively affect self-esteem and be so severe to even cause depression. There comes a point when you don’t even want to look at yourself in the mirror, nobody talks to you, and you know it hinders your chances of succeeding at almost everything. When did the last homecoming queen or king have bad acne? You no longer want to leave the house – I can’t begin to imagine how difficult life would be.
As we approach the summer months, we revel in the outdoor activities we’ve been deprived of and missing all winter long. We have gone through the long season without much sunshine, and now is our chance to go outside every day during the long summer days to enjoy all the outdoor activities we love.
On the weekends, we like to go up north and spend time at the lake – boating, riding jet skis or fishing. Many of us like that “healthy glow” we get from spending time in the sun. Our children enjoy playing sports such as soccer, tennis, football and baseball, among many others.
When you think of someone having a mole on their face, you may envision a “beauty mark” like Marilyn Monroe’s or Cindy Crawford’s. Other people associate moles as a characteristic of witches or villains – raised and unsightly. In popular culture, heroes and heroines are usually associated with clear, smooth facial skin while villains are portrayed with facial moles, scars or blemishes. Regardless, moles are common and most of us have at least a few.
The medical term is nevus (plural is nevi). They are a collection of our pigment producing cells called melanocytes. An average adult has anywhere from 20-40 moles on their body. Those with lighter-colored skin usually have more.
Many of us are chronically sleep-deprived. We tend to cut back on sleep to meet the ever-increasing demands on our time. But have you thought about the consequences of cutting back your sleep time? How does it affect your overall health and quality of life? Does it affect how your skin looks? Let’s take a quick look at the stages of sleep and what each one represents.
Sleep is divided into Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and non-REM (NREM) stages. NREM is further divided into transition to sleep (Stage I), light sleep (Stage II) and deep sleep (Stage III). Deep sleep accounts for 20 percent of our total sleep time and in this stage, we can hardly be awakened.
For many people, the thought of undergoing surgery is terrifying – so, My City Wellness “scrubbed in” to get up close with two talented local physicians as they performed state-of-the-art procedures. Our sincere thanks to doctors Bishr Al Dabagh, MD, FAAD and Marc Silver, MD for their gracious cooperation in creating this special section.
Bishir Al Dabagh MD, FAAD
PROCEDURE/SURGERY: Mohs Micrographic Surgery
CREDENTIALS: A board-certified dermatologist and a fellowship-trained Mohs surgeon focusing on the treatment of skin cancers, he graduated with Honors from the University of Michigan-Flint, attended medical school at Case Western Reserve University. He then trained in dermatology at Duke University and finished a Procedural Dermatology fellowship at the University of California – San Francisco.
FACILITY: Michigan Dermatology