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When To Go to a Dermatologist?

When_to_VisitDermatologists, those doctors who specialize in the treatment of the skin and skin conditions, are very much in demand these days. If you're like most people, you've considered going to one at some point because you were concerned about a skin condition you suffered from. However, like all medical specialists, dermatologists don't come cheap; and the fact is, most skin conditions don't really need dermatological treatment. The intention of this guide is to help you save your money and time by helping you decide when a dermatologist is really necessary for your skin problems.

It goes without saying that there are times when it's obvious that you need to go to a dermatologist. If it's a couple of day before your wedding and you've got a nasty breakout, go see the dermatologist. If you've had a nasty skin reaction to something you ate and it won't go away, go to the dermatologist. If your skin has been severely environmentally damaged, go to the dermatologist. If theatrical agents are knocking at your door asking you to become the Alligator Skinned Lady at the local sideshow, run -- don't walk -- to the dermatologist's office.

All kidding aside, there are certain situations in which you shouldn't bother with a dermatologist, unless you've got money to burn. With few exceptions (like the wedding example above), the occasional breakout is not something you should waste your money and your dermatologist's time on. Breakouts and the occasional zit can be handled with adequate skin care, based on a rigorous process of daily cleansing using a good cleansing scrub, a skin toner, and moisturizer. If you'd rather go the dermatologist than take care of your skin, you can -- but the dermatologist is just going to tell you to take care of yourself anyway. If that happens, hey, at least you can tell yourself it's doctor's orders -- expensive doctor's orders.

Choosing a dermatologist to visit can be a difficult decision. First, you need to find a good one. While you can pick one at random from your PPO directory, it's a better idea to chat with your friends and coworkers in an effort to narrow down the possibilities. (If you really don't want people to know about your fanny fungus, then by all means, go with the directory). You will need a dermatologist at one point, because even if your skin is absolutely flawless (you lucky thing), you'll still need to schedule a visit at least once a year to get a skin cancer check. Needless to say, if you see anything change radically on your face or elsewhere, schedule a visit immediately. Skin cancers (and other cancers too) often cause moles to change size and become irregular in shape. The rule of thumb is, if anything grows larger than the size of a pencil eraser, something's wrong, and you should have it looked at right away.

Of course, there are other skin conditions, generally less dangerous than cancer, in which a dermatologist visit is reasonable. Many of these conditions, like chronic acne, acne scarring, and psoriasis, can have severe negative impacts on emotional health, self-esteem, and quality of life, and should be treated if at all possible. Seeking dermatological help can jump-start the process of feeling better about yourself and bringing your skin back to optimal health. Contact and occupation dermatitis, blistering diseases, autoimmune illness, and infectious diseases can also damage the skin, and should be treated by dermatologists.

This isn't to say that you shouldn't go to a dermatologist for cosmetic reasons (and we're not talking Mary Kay here). Dermatologists can (and should) help you with problems like stretch marks, which can be particularly damaging, and they can also assist with the normal products of aging, like wrinkles and baggy skin. These days, dermatologists have access to new, minimally invasive techniques for a number of other problems, many of which involve very little recovery time. In fact, some of the procedures can be taken care of on an in-patient basis, right there in the dermatologist's office. With modern technology, the canny dermatologist has a whole arsenal of tools they can use to fight the ravages of aging and the environment. Lasers are becoming especially useful in dealing with items like scars, birthmarks, and tattoos that would otherwise mark your skin forever. Even biological agents, like Botox (botulism toxin) can be used for skin problems -- in this case, wrinkles. Chemicals, especially when used in chemical peels, can remove the surface layers of damaged skin, exposing healthy skin that, after a brief recovery period, can improve your appearance. Because of the dangers involved, of course, you should leave the chemical peels for the very worst damage that won't respond to other treatment.

Scarring, sun damage, environmental damage, excess hair, unwanted tattoos, dilated blood vessels, and skin pigmentation issues -- all are fair game for the dermatologist's skill. A dermatologist can also help you with irregularities in facial and bodily contours, though be forewarned that your dermatologist may not agree that some differences are necessarily irregularities -- when it comes to your body, you're usually your harshest critic, after all. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------If you are a business owner get listed at Best Personal Care Site, part of Network.
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