Posts for category: Skin Care
Mole Removal: What to Expect
Worried about that mole? A mole is a dark spot or irregularity in the skin. Everyone is at risk of skin cancer and should keep an eye on their skin and moles. Simply thinking about having a skin mole removed might send shivers down your spine, but sometimes it’s necessary for your health. For example, if a biopsy is cancerous, removing the mole can help to stop any cancer from growing more. But many individuals also have moles removed for cosmetic reasons.
What Causes Moles?
Skin moles occur in all races and skin colors. Some individuals are born with moles. Most skin moles appear in early childhood and during the first 20 years of a person's life. New moles appearing after age 35 may require medical evaluation, and possible biopsy. Some moles appear later in life. Sun exposure seems to play a role in the development of skin moles. People with high levels of exposure to UV light tend to have more moles. However, moles may also occur in sun-protected areas.
How Is It Done?
Mole removal is a simple kind of surgical procedure. Your doctor will likely choose one of two ways: surgical shave or surgical excision. Surgical shave is done more often on small skin moles. After numbing the area, your healthcare provider will use a blade to shave off the mole and some tissue underneath it. Stitches aren’t usually required. During the surgical excision procedure, your doctor will numb the area. He or she will use a circular blade or scalpel to cut out the mole and some skin around it. The doctor will then stitch the skin closed.
Can a Mole Grow Back?
There's a small chance that a mole can grow back after mole surgery, although there's no way to predict whether this will happen. It's important to understand that no surgery has a 100 percent cure rate. Some mole cells may remain in the skin and may recur in the same area. Some skin moles are more aggressive than others and need closer follow-up and additional treatment.
Are There Any Risks?
Risks of mole removal methods include infection, rare anesthetic allergy, and very rare nerve damage. Follow your doctor's instructions to care for the wound until it heals. This means keeping it covered, clean and moist. The area may bleed a little when you get home, especially if you take medications that thin your blood. It's always prudent to choose a doctor with appropriate skills and experience with these removals. This will lower the risks associated with this procedure.
Take charge of your health today. Regular self-skin examinations and annual skin examinations by a doctor help people find early skin cancers. If you need a mole check, find a dermatologist near you and schedule your annual skin cancer screening.A simple skin cancer screening could save your life.
Discover helpful acne-fighting tips and trick to achieve clearer skin.
You’re trying to find the right way to get your acne under control, right? Well, there are certainly so many options out there that it can be a bit daunting. First and foremost, if you are just starting to deal with acne then you may want to tackle the issue from the comfort of your own home before turning to a dermatologist for help.
At-Home Treatment Options
The first line of defense is usually to try an over-the-counter acne cleanser or topical cream that contains an active ingredient such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. It’s important to be patient when it comes to seeing results. No acne product will work overnight. In fact, it can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks of consistent use before you start to notice results from commercial acne products, so don’t give up on a product too soon.
Other tips to follow include:
- Cleaning your smartphone with disinfectant wipes at lease once a day (imagine just how much bacteria your phone picks up everyday).
- Washing your face twice a day, once in the morning and at night before bedtime, and immediately after sweating.
- Being gentle with your skin. Harsh scrubs and being aggressive won’t get rid of acne; it will actually just make it worse.
- Using cosmetic products that won’t clog pores (look for words like “non-comedogenic” or “oil free”)
- Leaving acne alone (do not pick acne or try to extract it yourself, as this can lead to scarring)
- Washing pillowcases regularly to get rid of pore-clogging bacteria
When to See a Dermatologist
If you are having trouble getting your acne under control after weeks of trial and error, or if your acne is severe and painful then it’s time to enlist the help of a dermatologist who will be able to provide you with more effective strategies for getting rid of your acne. After all, there are different things that can cause acne and it’s important that your skin doctor figures out what’s causing your acne so that they can create the right treatment plan for you.
Dermatologist-Approved Acne Treatment Options
Depending on what’s causing your breakouts, a dermatologist may recommend these treatment options:
- Topical treatment: Prescription-strength cleansers, ointments, and creams containing glycolic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinoids can target and eliminate acne.
- Topical or oral antibiotics: Antibiotics can reduce inflammation and kill the bacteria responsible for acne.
- Oral contraceptives: If you are dealing with breakouts that occur around your menstrual cycle then hormonal fluctuations could be causing your acne. There are certain types of birth control pills that have been FDA approved to fight acne.
- Isotretinoin: More commonly referred to as Accutane, this powerful oral medication is used for those dealing with severe cystic acne that can lead to deep scarring. This is often recommended when other treatment options haven’t been effective.
Have questions about getting your acne under control? Then it’s time to consult with a dermatologist.
Microneedling is an exciting cosmetic procedure for achieving more youthful looking skin. By smoothing fine lines and wrinkles, and firming and toning the skin, microneedling can help you appear refreshed. A dermatologist can help you decide if microneedling is right for you. At SkinMD, Dr. Ellen Jacobson is your dermatologist for microneedling in Nashville, TN.
What is Microneedling?
Microneedling is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure for dramatically improving the appearance of skin. It can be used to minimize the appearance of scars (including acne scars), wrinkles, fine lines, pigmentation, and various signs of aging. The procedure involves the use of extremely small needles on the skin, which helps stimulate collagen and elastin production. Collagen and elastin both help smooth and firm the skin for a more youthful and toned look. SkinMD uses the Collagen P.I.N., a handheld pen containing 36 motorized microneedles. Depending on the skin condition, different glides can be applied during the procedure to augment the results. Peels can also be applied after the procedure for an even more extreme effect.
How Can Microneedling Help Me?
It can be used to treat several different skin concerns on all types of skin. Microneedling can minimize the appearance of scars, brown spots and pigmentation, as well as reverse certain signs of aging. It can also be used to smooth fine lines and wrinkles, as well as firm and tone the skin to give you a more youthful and refreshed appearance.
How Soon Will I See Results?
Most patients undergo three to six sessions to achieve the desired results. Visible results are typically noticeable after the second microneedling treatment. The skin smoothing results become progressively better with subsequent treatments. Maximum results can be observed approximately three months following the last microneedling treatment session as that is the turnover time for collagen production.
Is Microneedling Painful?
Microneedling is a minimally invasive procedure that involves a slight prick to the skin. Most patients do not experience any pain during microneedling procedures, as topical anesthesia is applied before the procedure to reduce discomfort. However, the slight needle prick can be mildly uncomfortable for a small number of patients. Additionally, patients should expect 5-7 days of pink and peeling skin. Patients at SkinMD will be given a post procedure kit with each microneedling session.
Microneedling can help you achieve skin that is smoother, firmer, and more toned. For microneedling in Nashville, TN schedule an appointment with Dr. Jacobson by calling SkinMD at (615) 279-5656.
Could those rough, white bumps actually be Keratosis Pilaris?
If you are dealing with rough patches of skin on your body, then you may be dealing with a condition known as keratosis pilaris. While this is a fairly common and nonthreatening dermatological issue it can be hard to effectively treat. Luckily, most cases of keratosis pilaris go away by the age of 30. However, find out everything you need to know about this condition and how to manage your symptoms properly.
Are you noticing any of these symptoms?
- Rough, scaly patches that are sometimes itchy
- White or red bumps that look like acne
- Bumps on the arms, legs, cheeks or butt
- An increase in symptoms during the winter
If you’ve said “yes” to any of these symptoms above, then your bumps may be the result of keratosis pilaris. Luckily, this isn’t a serious condition and often won’t require treatment. However, some people feel embarrassed by how their skin looks. If this is the case, then consult your dermatologist.
Keratosis Pilaris Treatments
There is no one treatment that effectively helps those with keratosis pilaris. However, your dermatologist might recommend a medicated exfoliant, a retinoid cream or gel, or laser treatment. While using these medications may improve the look of your skin, if you stop taking this medication there is a significant chance that the problem will return. The biggest issue with this dermatological condition is that it lasts for many years.
SelfCare Measures for Keratosis Pilaris
While your treatment options might not sound ideal, there are also some easy things you can do at home that can improve the look of your skin.
- Avoid scrubbing or rubbing your skin, which can further aggravate your condition.
- Always pat your skin dry and never rub. This will also help to maintain moisture.Apply a moisturizer after getting out of the shower. This can further help to improve the appearance of dry, irritated skin.
- Look for products with urea or lactic acid. Both of these ingredients can be found in over-thecounter skin care products and they remove excess keratin from the outermost layer of the skin.
Talk to your dermatologist about which prescription medications and lifestyle changes would improve your condition. Even though this condition isn’t serious you can still seek medical advice and treatments to help with your problem.
Acne can be frustrating, but our board-certified dermatologist, Ellen Jacobson, MD and her team are here to help.
There are many factors that can contribute to acne and so no two treatments may ever work the same for two people. We know that trying to tackle your acne symptoms on your own can be frustrating, so it’s important to know how Dermatologist Ellen Jacobson, MD in Nashville, TN can work with you to find the right acne treatment for clearer skin.
First and foremost, it’s important to know that any acne treatment takes time to be effective. Most acne treatment options and medications take 2-3 months to see the full effect. The way we treat your acne will depend on the cause.
Treatment options include:
- Topical or oral antibiotics, such as doxycycline (kills acne-causing bacteria)
- Topical Benzoyl Peroxide products and washes (kills acne-causing bacteria and dries out oily skin)
- Topical retinoids, such as Retin-A (helps unclog pores/decreases black and whiteheads)
- Oral Isotretinoin, such as Accutane (used for severe cystic acne or resistant inflammatory acne)
- Laser therapy (kills acne-causing bacteria)
- Chemical peels
- Light therapy
- Medical -grade skincare products
Of course, there are also habits you can adopt every day to reduce acne breakouts while also handling acne when it appears. These habits include:
- A good daily skin care regimen
- Moisturizing daily
- Wearing SPF during the day
- Staying hydrated
- Getting good, quality sleep
- Changing your pillowcase weekly
- Eating a healthy balanced diet
Here at SkinMD in Nashville, TN we believe that everyone should feel confident in their skin. If acne is affecting your appearance and your self-esteem, then it might be time to give us a call. We would love to sit down with you and map out an effective treatment plan to get you one step closer to clearer skin!