THE EFFECTS OF WARM WEATHER ON YOUR DRY SKIN

THE EFFECTS OF WARM WEATHER ON YOUR DRY SKIN

THE EFFECTS OF WARM WEATHER ON YOUR DRY SKINWe all look forward to the warm touch of the sun’s rays on the skin, especially after winter. However, basking in the sun and endless outdoor activities can make your dry skin sensitive to the effects of UV rays. Dry skin (Xeroderma) is genetic. It produces very little natural oil, leaving it feeling or looking:

  • Stinging and raw, sensitive to the touch
  • Itchy, irritated, and painful
  • Rough patches and cracks
  • Flaky and red
  • Tight and rough

WHAT HAPPENS TO THE SKIN UNDER HOT WEATHER

As the temperatures become hotter, so does the heat become unbearable. Heat causes the skin to perspire, causing the skin to produce more oil (sebum) to protect itself. As a result, the pores dilate and may increase the appearance of pimples and acne for those with oily skin.

The sun’s heat may also affect the outer layer of the epidermis (top skin layer), known as the stratum corneum, which acts as the skin barrier. This barrier comprises lipids and dying or dead skin and has a layer of protection that prevents harmful toxins from entering the body. If it gets damaged by the sun’s rays, it results to dry or irritated skin. This is why applying sunscreen is essential to keep the skin hydrated, moisturized, and protected from sun rays.

DEHYDRATION

Warm weather increases water loss from the body and skin, leading to dehydration. This can lead to skin irritation, sunburn, and cracks on the lips. Dehydration can be caused by sun exposure, air conditioning, diet, or repeatedly wiping the face. The skin also loses moisture from the inside, making it itchy, dry, wrinkled, and dull.

If you are dehydrated, you may feel lightheaded and confused, and your tongue and mouth will also be dry. The best solution for dehydration is taking a lot of water to moisturize the skin inside and out. Carry a bottle of water with you and keep sipping at half an hour intervals. Take fruits like watermelon and other healthy juices suitable for the skin. Taking water also helps in eliminating toxins, unclogging pores, and helps keep the skin soft and smooth. Minimize coffee and alcohol consumption.

Humectants also help moisturize the skin by forming steam that gets vented into the air, resulting in a humid and moist atmosphere that helps improve dehydrated skin. Avoid harsh soaps and facial scrubs, especially gritty ones, since they can further irritate the skin. Some products in the market may help seal and moisturize the skin and form a protective barrier to reduce damage from environmental factors.

HEAT RASH

Sweat, dust, and heat can clog or block the sweat ducts, leading to a heat rash. This traps perspiration beneath the skin, causing blisters or bumps that can irritate the skin. Heat rash can also lead to very itchy skin. The rash develops from humid or hot weather conditions. Once the heat cools down, the rash usually goes away, but severe forms of heat rash may require medical attention from a skincare expert to rule out skin disorders.

If you sweat a lot, ensure you keep the skin clean by bathing twice daily using anti-bacterial soap or gel and keep the skin dry. If your skin is irritated, you can rub ice cubes to cool it down. Creams also help in clearing the irritation.

SUNBURN

Sunburn occurs when the skin is exposed to UV (ultraviolet) rays causing damage to your skin. This causes red patches, and your skin may feel warm to the touch. The skin may flake or peel off after a few days. To avoid sunburn, don’t expose yourself to the sun. Always wear sunscreen with SPF 30 and above on your face, arms, legs, and neck before leaving the house. Ensure you reapply sunscreen at least every 2 hours. If you are swimming or sweating excessively, then it should be applied more frequently. It is advisable to wear clothes which cover the skin as much as possible such as wide-brimmed hats and long sleeves.

HYPERPIGMENTATION

It can be caused by hot and humid weather or inflammatory skin conditions like acne or eczema. UV rays trigger the production of melanin pigment in the skin’s melanocyte cells. Heat directly affects the skin, causing the blood vessels to dilate, which triggers inflammation. This inflammation causes the melanocytes to produce more pigments leading to hyperpigmentation.

To prevent hyperpigmentation, keep the skin as cool as possible and actively protect your skin from the sun by wearing and reapplying sunscreen, seek shade, and use topical antioxidants such as SkinCeuticals Phloretin Serum every morning. The antioxidants in this serum reduce inflammation caused by the sun’s UV rays and infrared (heat) rays. Topical prescription and cosmeceutical creams can improve skin tone and treat hyperpigmentation. Severe cases may require laser and skin rejuvenation treatments.

PREMATURE AGING

Spending too much time in the hot sun disrupts the skin moisture barrier reducing its elasticity. It also leads to low antioxidant levels thus raising protein levels that destroy collagen. This may lead to early signs of aging, fine lines, and saggy skin. Using skin rejuvenating treatments can help restore your skin’s youthful appearance.

UV RAYS DAMAGE

UV rays change the skin in several ways. The sun’s rays darken the skin, making it appear freckled. Excessive UV rays also may cause swelling, wrinkles, pigmentation, and premature aging. To prevent this, minimize the time spent outdoors. Always wear a water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 50 for extended outdoor activity. This helps protect the skin against harmful UVA and UVB rays.

HOW TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR SKIN DURING WARM WEATHER

Maintain good hygiene because warm and wet heat breeds bacteria. Use an oil-based removing cleanser to control excess sebum if your skin is oily. Avoid harsh soaps and cleansers as they tend to dry out and irritate the skin.

Wear a good quality broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 50 whenever you are outdoors. Always moisturize your skin while it is still moist from the shower, and avoid hot showers or baths since they may dry your skin further.

If your skin has been severely damaged by the sun, seek medical treatment as soon as possible. For more information please contact The Pearl Dermatology.

Common Reasons for Facial Redness

Common Reasons for Facial Redness

Have you been experiencing redness on your face? Your skin can temporarily flush for various reasons like strong emotions, acne, sunburn, or hot flashes. Persistent flushing could be an indication of an underlying medical condition. Without a dermatological examination, it may not be easy to determine what is causing the redness on your face.

What Is Facial Redness?

Facial redness occurs when tiny spidery blood vessels beneath the skin dilate or expand rapidly, filling with more blood and making the skin appear pink or red. The skin appears flushed noticeably across the cheeks and chest.

Read on to find out the common causes of facial redness.

  1. Rosacea

Rosacea is a skin condition that makes the blood vessels in the face swell and become visible. It causes flushing or blushing easily, which comes and goes or never fades. It is characterized by pus-filled bumps, swollen eyelids, dry eyes, or thickened skin on the nose.  Anyone can develop rosacea, although it is common in women with fair skin between 30 and 50 years.

The cause of rosacea is unknown, but it may be due to heredity, environmental factors, or an overactive immune system. It is commonly triggered by:

  • Sun exposure
  • Stress
  • Certain medication
  • Heat and cold
  • Spicy foods
  • Some skin or hair products
  • Helicobacter pylori (an intestinal bacteria)
  • Alcohol
  • Exercise
  • Emotions

Rosacea has no cure, but treatment can relieve and control the symptoms.

2. Seborrheic Dermatitis

This common skin condition affects the scalp, nose, eyebrows, chest, and ears. It causes an itchy rash, red skin, and scaly patches. It is caused by yeast or an irregular response of the immune system.

Risk factors include medical conditions like Parkinson’s disease, HIV/AIDS, some cancers, depression, and some medications.

Seborrheic dermatitis is treated with antifungals to lower yeast levels and subsequently reduce inflammation and redness. Medicated shampoos, creams, or ointments may also be applied for a short time.

3. Eczema

Eczema is a chronic skin condition characterized by red, dry patches or rashes that can appear anywhere on the body, including the face. The rash is itchy, inflamed, and not contagious. Eczema is common in infants and young children.

Eczema is caused by a genetic condition affecting the skin’s ability to protect itself from allergens and bacteria and has no cure. Prescription drugs, stress management, food allergy treatment, and skincare help control and manage the condition.

4. Contact Dermatitis

The condition develops when the skin comes into contact with an irritant or allergen, causing a red rash commonly on the face. Triggers include harsh chemicals in cleaning products or detergents, soaps, hair dyes, lotions, essential oils, fragrances, poison ivy, poison oak, and latex.

If it is not easy to figure out what is causing the rash, consult a dermatologist.

5. Medication

Some medications, like chemotherapy drugs, relax the blood vessels in the face making it look flushed. Other medications cause a sunburn-like reaction when the skin is exposed to the sun. Additionally, prolonged use of steroid cream can cause the skin to react.

To get rid of the redness, check the information about the medication or review them with your doctor to get an alternative treatment.

6. Acne-Related Redness

Acne is a common skin condition whereby hormonal changes cause the body to produce excess sebum or oil. The excess oil traps dirt and bacteria in the skin’s pores leading to painful, pink or red bumps, skin thickening, whiteheads, and inflammation. Treatment helps the symptoms to subside and includes antibiotics, gels, or laser therapy.

7. Sun Damage

Sunburn is caused by prolonged exposure to the sun’s UV rays which causes the skin to become red and inflamed. It affects any part of the body that has been exposed to the sun, including the face. Always wear sunscreen and protective clothing to prevent sunburn.

Various conditions can cause facial redness. It is essential to consult The Pearl Dermatology to get a diagnosis if you have been experiencing redness for over two weeks.

How To Use Vitamin C

How To Use Vitamin C

How To Use Vitamin CIt doesn’t matter if it’s in your skincare routine or if you simply enjoy eating oranges, Vitamin C is a vitamin that has become a staple of many health routines. However, knowing what Vitamin C does and how to use Vitamin C isn’t always easy. If you want to get the most benefits from this Vitamin and avoid any side effects, you need to know how to use it right.

Vitamin C is one of those things that are just plain good for you. It can help with various issues, from keeping your skin healthy and glowing to easing sore muscles.

What is it?

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid and L-ascorbic acid, is a vitamin found in various foods and sold as a dietary supplement. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin. It is not stored in fat cells throughout your body like many other vitamins and minerals. Therefore a daily intake is required to maintain healthy stores.

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps prevent free radicals from forming in your body and causing issues such as inflammation and disease. It also plays a role in collagen production, which allows you to keep your skin looking healthy and young.

It’s also the most crucial nutrient necessary for the growth, development, and repair of all body tissues. It’s involved in many body processes, including collagen production, iron absorption, proper immune function, wound healing, and maintenance of cartilage, bones, and teeth. Vitamin C is also one of the top antioxidants in the body.
It’s found naturally in fruits and vegetables, which we eat, and it’s also commonly produced synthetically to be used in skincare products such as moisturizers, toners, and most often serums.

Why it’s great:

Vitamin C effectively treats everything from acne scars to dry skin to stretch marks to wrinkles! It’s even been used to treat sunburns because it helps protect against UV rays.

How to Use Vitamin C

Vitamin C should be part of everyone’s skincare routine—regardless of age or skin type. Being an antioxidant, Vitamin C protects the skin from damaging free radicals caused by UV exposure. It’s also vital for the formation of collagen, which helps maintain firmness and elasticity.

Vitamin C must be correctly formulated for it to be effective, or else it may not have any effect or can even cause harm. Many forms of vitamin C are available, but L-ascorbic acid is the most effective. It absorbs quickly and remains effective longer when correctly formulated and packaged to avoid exposure to light and air.

However, Vitamin C is a highly delicate and unstable molecule, which makes using it correctly key to getting its full benefits. Here’s how to use it right:

Choose your formula wisely

You want your vitamin C to come in a serum or cream rather than a cleanser or toner. These products are rinsed off too quickly for the vitamin C to have any lasting effect. Be sure to get the best product for your skin type.

Choose the right product for your skin type. If you have dry skin, look for a serum with hyaluronic acid, which gives extra moisture without clogging pores. If you have oily skin or are acne-prone, look for a gel-based serum that won’t clog pores.

Store it properly

One way to tell whether a vitamin C product is of good quality is to see whether it comes in packaging that protects it from light and air, which degrade the ingredient’s effectiveness. Pump bottles are best, followed by tinted bottles that protect the serum from light. Glass jars allow too much air to get in.

Dark packaging is necessary because vitamin C degrades fast when exposed to sunlight. If stored correctly, a well-formulated product will stay potent for at least six months — ideally in a cool, dark place (but not in the refrigerator).

When to apply Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an essential part of any skincare routine, but how do you incorporate it?

For starters, there’s the debate about whether to use it in the morning or at night. Some say that morning is ideal because you are exposed to the sun and the free radicals. Others would argue that nighttime is best since vitamin C is already depleted and your skin rejuvenates at night.

However, there’s no right or wrong answer—it all depends on what works best for you!
Regardless of when you choose to use it, using a product with vitamin C will help protect your skin from damage caused by pollutants and sun exposure.

But we do suggest using ascorbic acid (the pure form of vitamin C) in the morning since it can be powerful stuff on sensitive skin! And when used at night, we suggest using a more gentle form of vitamin C.

Either way, make sure to use a serum with vitamin C before applying your moisturizer—and don’t forget the sunscreen during the day!

Still, suppose you want the benefits of vitamin C at night. In that case, You can also pair vitamin C products with other serums such as hyaluronic acid or retinol for an even more significant effect.

Potential Side Effects of Using Vitamin C

Vitamin C is highly concentrated and potent enough to affect the skin’s pH levels. Vitamin C is best used in concentrations between 5% and 15% and should be applied once daily after cleansing in the morning or night.

Keep in mind that vitamin C is highly acidic, which may lead to skin irritation. To avoid any irritations, test a small area of your skin before applying it to your face. If you notice any redness or itchiness, then stop using the product immediately.

Vitamin C serums may cause skin irritation. A person who experiences this might want to lower the amount of serum they use to once per day or once every few days.

Vitamin C serum also causes skin sensitivity to sunlight. Using sunscreen as part of a daily skincare routine when using Vitamin C serum is essential.

Vitamin C serums can be expensive and less cost-effective than creams or lotions containing Vitamin.

Conclusion

Vitamin C is the most popular ingredient in skincare products. And while there’s no doubting the effectiveness of Vitamin C, it’s important to remember that products come in varying strengths. If you want to get the best results possible, it’s necessary to use the correct dosage and application schedule. Be sure to read the packaging on your vitamin C product or contact The Pearl Dermatology if you have any questions about how to use your skincare serum effectively.

Different Ways to Reduce Dark Circles

Different Ways to Reduce Dark Circles

Different Ways to Reduce Dark CirclesThe skin beneath the eyes is extremely sensitive, and it needs a lot of care. Dark circles are one of the most common problems that most people face today. No matter how much makeup you apply, these circles will not go away unless you treat them from the inside.

Dark circles typically occur because of heredity, allergies, stress, and illness. Other common contributors include lack of sleep, a poor diet, and dehydration. Certain medical conditions such as eczema and a hormonal imbalance can also contribute to their formation.

There are multiple causes of dark circles under the eyes including: swelling, puffiness, increased melanin, thin skin, genetics, loss of volume, deep set eyes, shadows, allergies, and/or lack of sleep. Our dermatologist can help diagnose your reasons for under eye circles and create a custom plan for you.

In this post, you will learn about some remedies that can help in reducing dark circles.

Treat Your Allergies

Many people suffer from seasonal and environmental allergies that cause nasal congestion, leading to dark circles under the eyes. If you also have allergies that trigger nasal congestion, try taking an antihistamine or decongestant to reduce symptoms like sneezing and a runny nose. You can also try using over-the-counter antihistamine eye drops to reduce eye redness and swelling that may be causing your allergic shiners.

Get Adequate Sleep

Fluid retention from lack of adequate sleep causes puffiness and dark circles under your eyes. Try to get seven to eight hours of sleep each night. You may also want to limit your alcohol intake before bedtime since having even one drink can disrupt your sleep cycle.

Cucumber

Cucumber is a natural skin toner and has soothing properties that can reduce the appearance of dark circles.

Cut one cucumber into thick slices. Place the slices in a bowl of cold water and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Remove the slices from the fridge and place them on your closed eyelids for 10 minutes. Do this daily for a few weeks until you completely get rid of the problem. You can also use cucumber juice or cucumber paste instead of cucumber slices.

Cold Press

Soak two cotton pads in chilled rose water or green tea and place them on your eyes for about 15 minutes. This will help in constricting the blood vessels and thus reduce dark circles. You can also use ice cubes wrapped in a muslin cloth but make sure not to apply ice directly on your skin as it may cause some damage. Repeat this 2 to 3 times a day to eliminate dark circles.

Caution: Do not use a cold compress if you have an eye infection.

Vitamin E Oil

Vitamin E is another nutrient that’s good for the skin, and many natural beauty products use vitamin E oil to treat dark circles and wrinkles. You can buy it from any pharmacy or health food store, but it’s important not to apply undiluted oil directly to the skin because some people are allergic to it. Instead, mix a few drops with coconut oil or olive oil and rub gently into the eyes with your fingertips until fully absorbed. Repeat once daily as needed.

Cold Tea Bags

Teabags are a great way to get rid of dark circles. Tea contains tannins, which are natural astringents that reduce swelling and constrict blood vessels to help reduce darkness and redness around your eyes.

How to use tea bags to reduce black circles;
Steep two black or green tea bags in hot water for 5 minutes. Remove the tea bags, cool them in the refrigerator for half an hour, and then place them over your closed eyes for 10-15 minutes. Repeat this daily until you see improvement.

There are many ways to reduce dark circles. It’s only a matter of finding what works best for your skin type, and when you take the right steps, you can get instant results to minimize their appearance—quickly and easily. One thing’s for sure: these efforts are well worth it since dark circles are a significant problem that can make even your most perfect makeup look less than stellar.

We offer multiple prescription and cosmeceutical skincare products which can address the individual reasons for your dark circles. For example, some products can be used to improve increased melanin in the skin, swelling, and/or puffiness.

For patients with under eye circles due to volume loss, treatment options include off-label usage of injectable hylauronic acid fillers placed under the eyes. In patients with extensive volume loss, fat transfer and/or blepharoplasty may be needed.

Most patients with increased melanin, called hyperpigmentation, under the eyes will see improvement with the above treatments. For those with more resistant cases, we recommend a series of treatments with nonablative, fractionated lasers with one of our board certified dermatologists. These lasers create microscopic channels of heat under the skin surface to boost collagen, thicken the skin, and create a bridge to allow the increased pigment to be removed.

For more information, contact The Pearl Dermatology today!

Skincare Routine for The Spring Season

Skincare Routine For The Spring Season

Skincare Routine For The Spring SeasonSpring is the ultimate time for a fresh start! Your outlook in the future is more optimistic, and the smell of blooming flowers is in the air. But there’s more to this exciting time of year than new beginnings: It’s also prime season for your skin to break out!

A change in the seasons can be hard on your skin, and spring is no exception. In fact, the change between winter and spring can be some of the hardest months on your skin — it’s cold, dry, then warm and humid, all within a few weeks.

As the seasons’ change, so should your skincare regimen. The winter season has finally ended, and it’s time to put away those heavy creams and ointments. That means that your skin will need some extra attention and TLC. Therefore, it is important to follow a skincare routine for the spring season.
Here are essential tips for your skincare routine in the spring season.

Exfoliate Regularly

Exfoliating the skin is crucial in any skincare routine, especially before the warmer months arrive. The drier winter air can leave skin looking dull and flaky. Exfoliating helps slough off dead skin cells that have built up from the colder weather. This prepares your skin for the new season ahead.

Exfoliating can help remove dead skin cells and reveal smoother, brighter skin. In addition, exfoliating promotes cell turnover and collagen production, resulting in healthier, younger-looking. Choosing a mild exfoliating product is also important to avoid irritating your skin. However, over-exfoliating can be detrimental to your skin, be sure not to overdo it.

Wear Sunscreen

Use the right cleanser

A good cleansing routine will help your skin look its best by preventing breakouts and removing dead skin cells. You may have used a creamier cleanser during winter, but as the weather warms up, you need to switch to a lighter formula that won’t clog your pores.

A gentle cleanser will cleanse and refresh your skin without stripping away natural oils. In the spring, you’ll want something that feels light and hydrating but won’t leave behind any residue on your skin.

If you have oily or acne-prone skin, consider using a cleanser with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to help clear blemishes. A glycolic acid exfoliating cleanser can be helpful for those with dry or aging skin.

Switch your moisturizer

During the winter months, most people use a thicker cream or ointment to create a barrier against the cold air outside, but you may find you need something lighter in the spring. Switching to a lotion or gel-cream formula will help prevent clogged pores that lead to breakouts.

Be sure to moisturize twice daily after cleansing your face in the morning and at bedtime before you go to sleep. You need to keep your skin hydrated but not over-moisturize so it stays healthy and glowing.

That means you need to choose the right moisturizer for your skin type. The three main types of moisturizer are:

Lightweight lotions are great for normal or combination skin because they feel light on the face and don’t clog pores.

Creams: Heavier than lotions, creams tend to work best for dry or mature skin by acting as a barrier against moisture loss.

Oils: Oils are best for oily or sensitive skin because they’re generally hypoallergenic, which means they’re less likely to irritate.

Hydrate

Most people believe that dehydration only happens during the summer months because of the hot temperatures outside. However, this is not true! Dehydration can occur at any time of year as long as heat is involved.

Keeping hydrated is key to healthy skin all year round, but it’s important during the spring months when allergies and colds can leave you feeling dehydrated. We tend to drink less water during the winter months because we are not as thirsty or hot. As spring arrives, be sure to drink plenty of water so that your body is properly hydrated. Plus, drinking water can flush out toxins that may be causing blotchy or inflamed.

Eat fresh fruits and vegetables

Clean your makeup brushes

You must clean your makeup brushes, especially after using heavy makeup during the winter season. When you use a dirty brush, they will be full of bacteria and transfer all that dirt on your face, clog your pores, and cause breakouts.

Clean your makeup brushes and sponges. If you’re using a foundation brush, clean it once a week. If you’re using a beauty blender or other sponge, wash it every few days.

Exercise regularly

Exercise improves blood circulation, bringing oxygen and nutrients to all body parts. Regular exercise is great for the skin because it gets the blood flowing and helps carry nutrients and oxygen to the cells. However, after a workout, you should be careful since sweat can clog pores and create blemishes.

If you’re not a gym rat, you may be tempted to abandon your workout routine during the spring, especially if the weather is favorable. A better idea: Try to squeeze your exercise into the morning before starting your day. That way, it won’t be so easy to skip.

Final Thought

Take care of your skin more during this time of year. You can’t stop the cold, windy days that often accompany spring, but you can take extra precautions to protect your skin from the elements. By doing so and paying close attention to the products you’re using, you can ensure that this spring is enjoyable—and skin-friendly.

For more information please contact The Pearl Dermatology today!

The Importance of Skin Cancer Screenings

The Importance of Skin Cancer Screenings

The Importance of Skin Cancer Screenings

What is skin cancer?

Skin cancer is a word that refers to a malignant growth on the skin that has the potential to spread if not removed. Skin cancer is caused by ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or tanning beds.

In the United States, skin cancer is the most frequent type of cancer. Basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, or melanoma are diagnosed in around 3.5 million people each year. Numerous others have precancerous lesions that may develop into cancer. However, skin cancers can be cured if detected and treated early.

Skin cancer screening tests

Skin cancer screening is crucial for the early detection of melanoma and other skin cancers. Skin cancer screening tests are the most effective approach to identify melanoma and other types of skin cancer on the body.

People with a family history of skin cancer, who live in sunny areas, who got a blistering sunburn as a child, or who have fair skin may benefit from having their risk of developing melanoma or other skin cancers assessed. If your doctor determines that you have a family history of melanoma or live in a high-risk area for skin cancer and plan to spend time outside this summer, you may need more frequent tests.

The doctor will inspect all regions of your skin, including any exposed areas, during a skin cancer screening exam. There are two primary forms of skin cancer examinations: visual and physical.
Visual examinations examine your skin for worrisome patches, moles, or lesions using a magnifying lens. Before you leave the office, the doctor may take photographs or take samples from worrisome areas.

  • Since melanoma can grow anywhere on the body, doctors recommend undergoing a whole body visual examination and physical examination every year, even if you do not have risk factors for developing this type of cancer.
  • Melanoma is the most dangerous form of skin cancer.

    If melanoma has not gone beyond the skin by the time it is identified, it has a 90% five-year survival rate. However, if cancer spreads to other parts of the body, that percentage reduces to 15%, according to the ACS.

    The good news is that routine screenings can detect melanoma early — even before cancer develops symptoms.

    While the majority of persons with melanoma have a history of sunburns or tanning bed use, neither of these factors is required to develop this deadly form of skin cancer. Unfortunately, some melanomas do not appear as expected. That is why dermatologists recommend that you have your moles routinely evaluated by a physician who specializes in skin cancer screenings.

    If you detect an unusual spot on your skin — or anything that is not normal for you — call your doctor immediately.

    Determining your skin cancer risk

    You may be at an increased risk of developing skin cancer if you:

    • Are over the age of 40
    • Have moles on your body
    • Have suffered from one or more severe sunburns as a child or adolescent
    • Regularly spend time outside
    • Routinely indoor tan
    • Have fair skin
    • Are predisposed

    Skin cancer testing can save a person’s life. Early detection allows patients to receive essential therapy in a less invasive manner, preserving more good skin.

    The greatest way to avoid skin cancer and reduce your risk of non-melanoma skin cancer is to consult a dermatologist regularly. Recognizing it early is beneficial. In the meantime, feel free to visit our Pearl Dermatology blog frequently with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have.

    Reducing Eczema Flare-Ups This Winter

    Reducing Eczema Flare-Ups This Winter

    Winter is here which can be great for warm nights by a fire, cozy clothing, and enjoying the great outdoors. But for those with eczema, it can also mean fighting off flare-ups. Going from cold outdoors to dry indoors often can irritate your skin leading to acute symptoms of eczema. Fortunately, we are here to help you reduce your risk of flare-ups this winter.

    Eczema

    Eczema is a skin condition that affects millions of Americans. Often diagnosed in early childhood symptoms can range from mild to severe. Symptoms of eczema include dryness, itchiness, rashes, scaly patches, and blisters on your skin.

    There are different types of eczema, but your dermatologist can help you determine which specific type you have.

    Atopic dermatitis is a common type of eczema that can leave your skin dry, itchy, and irritated. Sometimes cracks or bumps filled with fluid may also occur and increase your risk of developing an infection. Symptoms can even become severe making it difficult to sleep and significantly impact daily life.

    Why Can Eczema Worsen During Winter?

    During the winter, the air outside can be cold and dry with low humidity levels both indoors and outdoors. Often, in the winter months, it can be difficult for your skin to stay hydrated on its own. These factors can make your skin dry and irritated leading to a flare-up.

    Reduce Flare-Ups This Winters

    Eczema affects each patient differently and may be triggered by various factors making it difficult to predict. However, we believe that the following tips can help to reduce your chance of flare-ups this winter.

    Avoid Rapid Temperature Changes

    Even people without eczema may experience dry or itchy skin during the winter early in the morning or towards the day. This is often due to the sudden changes in temperature such as when you enter a warm dry house after a cold day outside or vice versa.

    For those with eczema, by avoiding dramatic temperatures you can reduce your risk of a flare-up. Keep rooms at constant, comfortable temperatures that are not too warm. Use layers of blankets instead of one thick layer so that you can throw off layers if you overheat.

    If you are in the snow or get wet, be sure to change out of your wet clothes as soon as you get someplace dry. The cold and damp clothing can make your eczema worse and encourage fungal growth.

    Be Mindful of Fragrances

    Scented products such as soaps, detergents, lotions, body washes, cosmetics, and perfumes can irritate and dry out those with sensitive skin. If you have eczema-prone skin, it may be best to choose products that are fragrance-free or formulated for those with sensitive skin.

    Consider Your Clothing

    If you have eczema, it is important to consider your wardrobe choices during the winter. Wool, polyester, and some synthetics can cause your skin to become irritated. Instead opt for layers of cotton, silk, and cashmere.

    By wearing multiple breathable layers instead of a single layer of clothing, you can stay comfortable inside and outside.

    Remember to cover exposed areas including your hat, neck, chest, and hands when you go outside.

    Humidifier

    A humidifier can help restore moisture into the air and combat winter dryness. Place several humidifiers around your home so that your skin doesn’t get too dried out or irritated.

    Be sure to clean out your humidifier every few days and change the water often to avoid bacterial or fungi growth and keep your air clean.

    Moisturize

    Moisturizing is important all year round, but during the winter you may find you may need to moisturize more often throughout the day or use “heavy” duty products such as ointments or thick creams compared to lotion. Keep travel-sized products in your car or bag so that you can reapply anytime you feel dry.

    When shopping for moisturizers for your face and body, look for ingredients that will offer lasting hydration. Products with petroleum jelly, shea butter, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, squalene, and dimethicone can be hydrating products for patients with eczema. For itchiness, use a cream containing hydrocortisone. Always check with your dermatologist about which products are safe and appropriate for you and your children.

    Don’t forget to protect your lips as well! Licking them may add temporary moisture but dries out your lips even further. Instead, use a balm!

    Shower Smart

    Hot showers might seem like a good escape from the cold weather, but hot water can strip away your protective oils and cause further dryness and inflammation. Instead, bathe or shower in warm water. For children, limit bath time to under 10 minutes.

    Remember to moisturize after patting yourself dry with a soft towel.

    Light and gentle exfoliation can help to remove dead skin and allow for your moisturizer to penetrate better, but patients with eczema should be careful when exfoliating. Use gentle wash clothes as aggressive body scrubs and chemicals can irritate and further dry and harm your skin.

    When To Visit Your Dermatologist

    If you notice unusual changes in your skin, we always recommend scheduling an appointment with your dermatologist so that we can diagnose the cause and provide you with an appropriate treatment plan. Even though signs of itching, trouble sleeping, inflammation, and redness may be symptoms of eczema, they may also be symptoms of an underlying condition. With a professional diagnosis, we can get you on the road to healthy and clear skin once again with the right treatment and products.

    For more information on eczema and how we can help you or to schedule an appointment, contact Pearl Dermatology today.

    Taking Time to Care for Your Skin This November

    While we continue to transition into cooler weather, you may notice some changes in your skin. Dryness, irritation, redness, or maybe even some new signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles. As dermatologists, we are skincare experts and here for your every need. This month is National Healthy Skin Month, and a great time to think about your skin’s health and how to have glowing, hydrated skin all year round so you can keep looking and feeling at your best.

    Invest in Your Skin

    We all have different skin types, needs, and concerns so invest in your skin by learning about it! If you are unsure what your skin needs, schedule an appointment with us so we can evaluate your skin’s health and guide you towards products that will work wonders for your skin. Often, it can be easy to grab the cheapest product off the shelf, but in skincare, you often get what you pay for. Allow us to create a customized skincare routine with selected products that can help you to reach your goals of treatment and heal your skin so that you can feel and look radiant.

    Wash & Moisturize Daily

    Self-care is important not just for your physical health, but also emotional and mental. Aside from washing your face twice a day with warm water and a mild cleanser, showering or bathing daily using a soap or body wash formulated for your skin type can keep your skin clean and healthy. Keep in mind that your skin’s needs change with the seasons, as it gets colder and dryer you may need to consider products with more moisturizing ingredients. We also recommend washing after exercise, sweating excessively, and swimming.

    Practice good shaving techniques, wet your skin and hair to soften the area, and use moisturizing shaving cream, lathering it well on your body before shaving in the direction of hair growth. Rinse after every stroke and change blades after several uses. These tips can minimize your risk of irritation, razor bumps, and ingrown hairs.

    After you shower or bathe, apply a moisturizing ointment, cream, or lotion immediately after washing to help trap in remaining moisture to your skin. Ointments and creams can be more effective at times compared to lotion and are good to use before bed.

    Protect Your Skin

    The sun’s intense UV rays can lead to early signs of aging such as wrinkles and fine lines as well unwanted changes in pigmentation like dark spots. By using sunscreen daily, you can protect against the sun’s harmful rays and lower your risk of developing skin cancer. Apply sunscreen all year round. The American Academy of Dermatology highly recommends an SPF of 30 or higher with UVA protection. Be sure to reapply every four hours if you know you will be outside for a while. Sunglasses and protective clothing such as long sleeves and pants can also go a long way in protecting your skin from the harsh rays of the sun.

    Conducting monthly self-examinations of your skin is another great way to protect and maintain your skin’s health. Use a full-length mirror to check your front, back, and sides with your arms raised. Be sure to scan over your forearms, underarms, palms, and elbows. Don’t forget to check your legs, toes, and soles of your feet. A hand mirror can help you examine other areas such as your neck, scalp, back, and buttocks.

    Look for any asymmetrical shapes, uneven skin, spots with bumpy borders, different colored areas, or spots that might be changing in size, shape, and color. We know it may seem like a lot, but it is important to check regularly and look for any changes in your skin.

    Treat Yourself

    You may not think we care about cosmetic treatments, but cosmetic dermatology is still dermatology! Take time this month to treat your skin with one of our amazing treatment options. Chemical peels, photofacials, microneedling, laser therapy, soft tissue fillers, and skin tightening are just a few of the services we provide to give you better-looking and feeling skin.

    Lower Your Stress

    Excess stress can increase your risk of breakouts, unwanted blemishes, and acne. A healthy lifestyle will lead to healthy skin. A well-balanced diet accompanied by regular exercise can help to lower your stress levels while fueling your skin’s needs. Getting consistent sleep, staying hydrated, taking vitamins, and practicing stress relief techniques such as mediation, journaling, and yoga can also lower your stress levels and lead to fewer stress-related breakouts.

    November is also a great time to schedule a screening and have your skin evaluated by a medical professional. During your appointment, we can look for any irregularities and answer any questions or concerns you may have about your skin or skincare products. By visiting us annually, we can monitor your skin for changes or signs of cancer. For more information on how to keep your skin clear and healthy, contact The Pearl Dermatology today.

    Treating Warts

    Treating Warts

    Treating WartsThough not considered a medical emergency, warts are a common ailment. Some warts may even cause pain and negatively impact your quality of life. At our office, we are proud to provide several treatment options to help you get you on the path towards clear skin once again.

    What are Warts?

    Warts are benign or non-cancerous skin growths that develop when your skin becomes infected by a strain of the human papillomavirus (HPV). The virus can penetrate your skin through a small cut or scrape. The virus triggers extra cell growth and creates a raised bump, where the skin becomes thick and hard.

    Warts are contagious and are typically passed through direct skin-to-skin contact but can also be spread by touching contaminated surfaces. The hands and feet are the most common areas where warts develop but can appear on other areas of the body as well. Anyone can get warts, however, children and those with weakened immune systems can be at an increased risk.

    Common Types of Warts

    Warts are often skin-colored, but can appear darker in hues such as brown or grayish black. Some are raised and rough like a callus, while others may be flat and smooth. You may notice small black dots on the wart, commonly known as wart seeds, which are small, clotted blood vessels.

    There are several kinds of warts. The type of wart you have depends on where it develops on the body and what it looks like. Common types of warts include:

    • Common Warts – These warts often appear on your hands, fingers, and around the nail area. They are often small rough bumps.
    • Filiform Wart – Filiform warts grow on fingers as long threads and can grow and multiply very quickly. They are generally painless. If they develop in a sensitive area such as skin folds, they may cause itching, irritation, bleeding, and soreness.
    • Flat Warts – Flat warts can appear anywhere on the body including the face and tend to grow in large numbers. They are smaller and smoother than common warts, about the size of a pinhead.
    • Genital Warts – Genital warts are caused by a strain of the human papillomavirus (HPV) that spreads through unprotected sexual activity. For men, genital warts can develop on the penis, scrotum, and anus. Women can develop genital warts on the outside of the genitals but also within the vagina and on the cervix. You can also develop genital warts in the mouth or throat. These warts may cause itching or discomfort as well as bleeding during intercourse.
    • Plantar Warts – Plantar warts form on the soles of your feet, around the heel, or ball of the foot. They tend to grow in clusters and often callus over. Plantar warts are often flat or grow inward due to pressure. Standing or walking for long periods can become painful when you have plantar warts.

    Diagnosis

    In many cases, we can determine whether you have a wart or not by examining the area and growth. However, in some cases, we may need to perform a skin biopsy to be certain. During a biopsy, a small piece of the wart is removed and sent to a lab to be analyzed under a microscope.

    Treatment Options

    Some warts may disappear without needing any treatment at all or with at-home remedies. Please schedule an appointment if you notice any suspicious growths or if your warts begin to hurt, interfere with daily activities, or start to rapidly increase in size or spread. We are proud to offer several wart removal treatment options. During your consultation, we will discuss what treatment options are best for your situation.

    • Cryotherapy – Using liquid nitrogen, your doctor will apply the chemical to your wart. This causes a blister to form as the cells are burnt and the blood supply cut off, killing the infection. After a week or so, the dead skin will slough off. This treatment can be painful like a minor burn, so your doctor may recommend administering a numbing agent to the area.
    • Electrocautery – With electrocautery, an electric needle is used to remove the wart surgically. Both the virus and the wart are treated. Before the procedure, the area is numbed.
    • Laser Therapy – Laser removal is a more highly effective, minimally invasive, and speedy treatment option. A high-powered laser cuts off the blood supply from the wart while eliminating the virus from your body. After treatment, the wart dies and sloughs off within a week.
    • Salicylic Acid – Similar to chemical peels, salicylic acid works by removing layers of your wart at a time. This topical medication is a stronger dose than products that can be bought over-the-counter.

    Depending on the severity of your wart or warts, multiple treatment sessions may be needed to completely remove the wart.

    If you know someone who has a wart or if you have one, avoid touching it as it spreads easily from direct contact. Wear footwear in public showers, locker rooms, decks, and gyms as these are popular breeding grounds for bacteria and viruses. Remember to wash your hands often. Keep your warts covered until you can come into our office for your consultation. For more information on warts and our treatment options or to schedule an appointment, contact The Pearl Dermatology today.

    Back-To-School Skincare Tips

    We know that this upcoming school year will be different from the years before. Some are returning to classrooms with masks while others continue with virtual studies. Whatever the school year looks like for you, we are here for all your skincare needs and want to make sure you and your skin are happy and healthy.

    Schedule An Appointment

    We recommend patients come in annually for a dermatology exam. We are happy to provide you with a full-body exam to check any moles or other suspicious spots on your skin. Bring any questions or concerns you may have about skincare and how to have healthy skin. Don’t hesitate to bring up anything that might concern you, as often a quick check can help diagnose any spots or areas you may be worried about.

    Another benefit of scheduling your exam before the start of term is even if you aren’t suffering from breakouts, a routine check-up can help you to start the year out clear and fresh. We can help you determine your skin type or type of blemishes and acne that have been bothering you lately. After your exam, we can discuss what beauty and cosmetic products are right for you and your needs.

    Make A Routine

    Even if your day is extremely busy with classes, work, or extra-curricular activities, it is important to take time out of your day to care for your skin. Creating a good skincare habit is crucial to having youthful, glowing skin. Your routine doesn’t need to be complex, contain expensive products, or take hours to complete. We can help you find a routine that works for you and your lifestyle.

    Do your best to stick to a routine. Though it won’t always mean you’ll have crystal clear skin, regular skincare habits can help you avoid painful blemishes and breakouts.

    Be sure to check your products regularly, as cosmetic products do have expiration dates. It is very common for eye makeup and lip products to grow bacteria that can become harmful, so be sure to toss out products past their date and never share products.

    Don’t Pop

    Though it can be tempting to pop a pimple, especially before a big event, popping your pimples can lead to scarring and may spread acne-causing bacteria leading to more breakouts. Instead, wash with a good cleanser and use topical ointments to reduce the size. They won’t magically disappear overnight. It takes time for products to work, but you should quickly notice a reduction in redness and swelling. By using products regularly, you can also fight off future breakouts and pimples.

    Exfoliate

    Exfoliation is a key to healthy skin as it works to remove dead cells, bacteria, and debris from the surface of your skin and keep your pores clear. However, it is important not to use an exfoliator that is too rough or to exfoliate too often as it can irritate, damage, and dry out your skin.

    If you have sensitive skin, we may recommend only exfoliating once a week while others may be able to do so twice. During your consultation, we can discuss which types are right for your skin type and goals. Always moisturize after exfoliating.

    Rest

    During sleep, your body works to refresh and repair any damage accumulated throughout the day so that you can awaken ready for the day. Your skin is the same! Make sure you give your body time to rest. Studies show adults should sleep 7-8 hours a day, and growing children need even more.

    Choose Warm Water

    Even though hot baths and showers sound relaxing and inviting, the harshness can be too much for your skin. The temperature of the water can upset your skin’s balance by stripping away oils that keep your skin hydrated and healthy. It can also lead to inflammation, redness, dryness, and itchy skin. Instead, we recommend using warm water and moisturizing right afterward to lock in hydration.

    Reduce Your Stress Levels

    Unmanaged stress can lead to forgoing good habits such as getting enough sleep, eating a balanced diet, or remembering to follow a skincare routine. Though we know school and work can be overwhelming, it is important to try to be mindful of your stress levels for both your health and skin!

    With summer over, start the year off right by scheduling an appointment with our office. A healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, adequate sleep, and a regular skincare routine can make sure your skin is hydrated, glowing, and beautiful this year. For more information on our skincare tips or to schedule an appointment, contact The Pearl Dermatology today.