Posts for category: Skin Health
It is normal for people to have a few moles present somewhere on their body. In most cases, moles are harmless. However, some moles do present a risk for developing skin cancer. Any moles that are a concern can be removed by a dermatologist. A dermatologist can examine any moles you have to assess whether or not removal is necessary. At South County Dermatology, Dr. Robert Dyer and Dr. Vincent Criscione are your dermatologists for mole removal in East Greenwich, RI.
When Mole Removal is Necessary
Mole removal could be necessary when there are signs of possible cancer growth. Changes in the appearance of moles can be an indication of cancer development. The change can be in the color, size, shape, or texture of the mole. The bottom line is that any change is suspicious and should be examined by a dermatologist. American Academy of Dermatology has identified the following characteristics as being possible indicators of cancerous growth that could necessitate removal of a mole:
- The mole is asymmetrical
- The mole has a poorly defined or an irregular border
- The mole is not a consistent color throughout
- The mole is 6mm or greater in size
- The appearance of the mole has changed
It is important that you schedule a skin-cancer screening with a dermatologist if you observe any of the above characteristics in any of the moles on your body. A dermatologist can perform a biopsy of any suspicious moles to determine if cancer cells are present. Even if there is no sign of cancer, the dermatologist could still recommend removal of suspicious moles as a preventive measure.
The Mole Removal Process
The mole removal process is fairly straightforward out-patient procedure so you can return home the same day. To remove a mole, the doctor can either shave the mole off with a scalpel or remove it through excision. The doctor will first numb the area around the mole before removing it. If the mole is removed by excision, stitches will be required to close the area following removal of the mole. If the mole is shaved off, no stitches are typically necessary as the mole is generally removed flush with the skin level.
A dermatologist can determine if removal of any moles is necessary. For mole removal in East Greenwich, RI schedule an appointment with Dr. Dyer or Dr. Criscione by calling South County Dermatology at (401) 471-3376. Other office locations include Narragansett, Westerly, and Barrington, RI.
Eczema is a chronic skin condition that produces itchy rashes that are scaly, dry, and leathery. It can appear anywhere on the body and most often appears in the creases of the arms, legs, and face. Something that many people may not know is that there are multiple types of eczema. They all share some common symptoms but are all different depending on the nature of what triggers the reaction and the location of the rash.
Types of Eczema
This is the most frequent and common form of eczema and it’s thought to be caused by the body’s immune system functioning abnormally. It’s characterized by itchy, inflamed skin and typically runs in families. Atopic Dermatitis usually flares up and goes away intermittently throughout a person’s life.
This is caused when the skin comes in contact with an irritant such as certain chemicals. Finding what triggers a breakout is important so that it can be prevented in the future. Triggers may be things like laundry detergent, body soap, fabrics, poison ivy, and more.
Dyshidrotic Dermatitis usually affects the palms and soles of the feet. It is characterized by clear, deep blisters that itch and burn and occurs frequently during summer months and in warm areas.
This form of eczema is a chronic skin inflammation caused by a cycle of scratching to a localized itch, such as a mosquito bite or spider bite. It’s characterized by scaly patches of skin, usually on the head, lower legs, wrists, and forearms. The skin may become thickened and leathery.
This form is characterized by round patches of irritated skin that can be crusted, scaly, and very itchy. It frequently appears on the back, arms, buttocks, and lower legs.
This is a common condition that causes yellow, oily, and scaly patches on the scalp, face, and other body parts. Dandruff is a form of Seborrheic Dermatitis. This form of eczema doesn’t always itch. Triggers can include weather, oily skin, emotional stress, and infrequent shampooing.
This appears on the lower legs of older people and is related to circulation and vein problems. Symptoms can include itching and red-brown discoloration on the skin the legs. As the condition progresses it can lead to blistering, oozing, and skin lesions.
Eczema comes in all shapes and sizes and can be triggered by many things. If you have questions about eczema or want to make an appointment, call our office today!
At some point in our lives we have all been guilty of it. We fall into a beauty routine and use the same products day after day - even year after year - and don’t recognize the harm that is being done to our skin. Your dermatologist works to provide you with common skin habits that might be harming your skin. By recognizing these harmful habits, you can take the next step to healthy, glowing skin.
Picking Pimples: When a pimple first appears, many of us immediately pop or pick at it. This is very harmful to your face. If you experience frequent pimples and blemishes seek professional help from your dermatologist. Your dermatologist can recommend products that contain anti-inflammatories, anti-bacterial and healing agents. Popping a pimple will only make the scar worse or could spread the breakout, so stop now.
Going to Bed with Dirty Skin: While many of us go to bed exhausted, sometimes skipping our own routines, it is important to not skip cleaning your face—it is a necessity. Whether you wear makeup or not, pollution, dust, skin cells and oil all accumulate on the surface of your skin throughout the day. Cleaning your skin at night helps to freshen your skin and remove these harmful agents.
Going Outside without SPF: Tanning is not the only reason for aging of the skin—any time spent in the sun at all also contributes to aging skin. SPF15 or above is the perfect addition to a skincare routine to help prevent aging. Look for a moisturizer or primer with tint and SPF added to give you a multi-tasking product.
Using Soap to Cleanse Your Skin: You might tell yourself to just grab a bar of soap to clean your face, but that can do more harm than good. Soap is an alkaline, which removes oil and dirt effectively. On the other hand, soap also strips the protective barrier from the surface of your skin. Your dermatologist recommends looking for soap-free, acid-balanced cleansers that are designed specifically for your skin condition and type.
Boiling Hot Showers: While the feeling of a hot tub or nice hot shower can help ease muscle aches and pains, while keeping us warm on a cold morning, the warmer the water the more stimulating it can be on your skin—especially your face. If you are choosing to cleanse, exfoliate and use a mask in the shower, be sure to turn down the temperature to avoid causing unneeded redness and inflammation.
Contact your dermatologist for more information on how to better care for your skin, and to skip those harmful habits you might be used to.
Abnormal, unpredictable and excessive sweating, referred to as hyperhidrosis, is a serious and difficult medical condition for millions of people worldwide. Hyperhidrosis occurs when the body’s sweat glands are overactive, which causes overabundant sweat production that is not warranted by physical activity or an emotional response to stress. This condition is often characterized by unexplainable sweaty palms, embarrassing sweat rings and dripping foreheads.
While there is no known cause of hyperhidrosis, it may occur in people who have abnormally large sweat glands or who are genetically predisposed to hyperhidrosis. Excessive sweating may also signal more serious medical conditions such as thyroid problems, low blood sugar and other health problems. That’s why it is important to visit your physician or dermatologist when you suspect you have an abnormal sweating problem.
In many cases hyperhidrosis goes undiagnosed, misdiagnosed and untreated due to lack of awareness about the condition and the treatment options available. As physicians become more knowledgeable about the condition, more effective treatments are emerging—and working!
Prescription Strength Deodorants
- When over-the-counter deodorants are not effective in managing your sweating, then you may need a stronger antiperspirant. A dermatologist may prescribe a deodorant that contains ingredients that block sweat ducts temporarily to reduce excess moisture.
- Your regular physician or dermatologist may prescribe medications to prevent the stimulation of sweat glands.
- Botox, a popular cosmetic procedure known for treating wrinkles, may also be used to safely control hyperhidrosis. Botox helps control excess sweating by temporarily blocking the chemical signals from the nerves that stimulate the sweat glands.
Although non-life threatening, hyperhidrosis can be embarrassing, impacting your daily life both socially and professionally. But it is also treatable. Understand your treatment options, and visit your dermatologist to learn more about managing your hyperhidrosis.
A cancer diagnosis, no matter what kind, is one of the most terrifying times of many peoples’ lives. Under the right circumstances, skin cancer is often caught early, giving it a higher chance of being treated. However, learning how to spot skin cancer and its treatment is crucial to early detection. Learn more about skin cancer with help from your East Greenwich, RI dermatologist.
How can I spot skin cancer?
Skin cancer begins as a mole-like spot on the skin. According to the American Cancer Society, you should use the ABCDEs to search for signs of skin cancer:
- Asymmetry: Skin cancer growths are usually asymmetrical in shape while normal moles are usually circular or ovular.
- Border: The border of a normal mole is smooth and straight, unlike skin cancer which is lumpy or irregular.
- Color: Skin cancer often has several colors within the growth instead of one, overall color like a mole. They may also appear to be black or very dark brown.
- Diameter: If you have a mole which has a diameter larger than a pencil’s eraser, or about 6 millimeters, it could be skin cancer.
- Evolving: Skin cancer growths tend to change shape and size over time. Regular moles stay the same.
Normal moles very rarely evolve into skin cancer. This means most skin cancer growths are new spots, not old ones. If you notice a new mole or one that has one or more of the ABCDEs, you should alert your doctor as soon as possible. The sooner skin cancer is caught, the better the chances for successful treatment.
How is skin cancer treated?
Treatment for skin cancer from your East Greenwich dermatologist depends on the patient, the kind of cancer they have, the size of the growth and what stage the cancer is in. The most common treatment for skin cancer is surgery to remove the growth from the skin. This is usually enough to cure the cancer for most people. More stubborn cases of skin cancer may require radiotherapy after surgery to eliminate any remaining cancerous cells.
How can I prevent skin cancer?
Preventing skin cancer is as easy as protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Be sure to wear at least SPF 30 sun block on any exposed areas of your skin while you are outside. Reapply the sun block every two hours, taking care to reapply more often if you are heavily perspiring or in the water. Try to wear wide-brimmed hats and UV blocking sunglasses to protect your face and eyes and long pants and sleeves to cover the skin on your legs and arms.
For more information on skin cancer, please contact your doctor at South County Dermatology in East Greenwich, RI. Call (401) 471-DERM (3376) to speak with an associate about scheduling your examination today.