Woman, look below your face too!
- By Team TDO
Skin problems are not restricted to the face alone. There are several places where there could be problems. You don’t have to grimace and bear it always!
- Moles: A mole is formed when the skin grows out in a crop or cluster. Moles can be quite harmless. At times, moles are also precursors to serious melanomas. If your mole suddenly grows big or changes colour or starts to bleed, see your dermatologist right away. He will advice a biopsy to rule out anything serious. It is always safe to be in the clear!
- Rosacea: This is an irritating skin condition that is brought on by specific triggers. It is usually manifested as red spots on the face, flushing or small red eruptions on the face. This condition has multiple triggers, the most common one being the sun. With no cure being available for rosacea, avoiding the triggers like sun, alcohol and extreme temperatures is the only solution. For moderate to severe cases, topical or oral antibiotics are prescribed. Depending on the severity, laser treatments that zap the blood vessels that cause the flushing can also be opted for.
- Ingrown hair: Too much of waxing and shaving results in the hair growing haphazardly. It results in hair curling up and growing up backwards. It can be a painful condition, especially if it gets infected. Wipe the skin with a cloth dipped in warm water to soften the skin so that it can grow freely. If the pus has already found its place, dab a bit of benzyl peroxide on it.
- Stretch marks: When your skin stretches with rapid weight gain, as in pregnancy, the result is unsightly stretch marks. Stretch marks, though a proud and happy achievement, can be an embarrassingly reality too! Treatment for them is possible when they are still fresh and pink. Applying a vitamin A or retinoid based cream regularly helps reduce the visibility of the stretch marks by making the skin more pliable.
- White spots: White spots can be anything from PMLE to Vitiligo. Polymorphous Light Eruptions are the typical whitish spots that come up on the exposed parts when you are out in the sun too much. It occurs due to the damage to the melanocytes by the harsh rays of the sun.
- In some cases, there are antibodies that the body produces against the melanocytes that go around killing the melanocytes in random places. This causes large white spots at random locations on the body which typically spread. So use a sunblock every time you step out into the sun. If you find the spot growing in size, consult your dermatologist. He may determine whether it is vitiligo. Vitiligo has no cure, there are oral medications available, which along with the sunrays help restoring some color to the skin.
- Birthmarks: These are pigment cells that are overgrown. Most birthmarks fade over time. However, if yours starts growing and changes to a dark brown color, get yourself checked by a skin specialist. Chances are that it could be a melanoma.
- Birthmarks are usually harmless and do not require removal except for cosmetic reasons. However certain medical conditions like melanoma also warrant their removal.
- Varicose veins: When blood in the legs isn’t unable to pump up against gravity or if the valves of the leg veins are faulty, the blood starts stagnating in the leg. This causes the legs to swell and the veins to look prominent. This painful condition occurs in obese people, at times in pregnancy and in people with jobs that requires them to stand all day. Resting with the feet above chest level is a solution for mild to moderate cases. In severe cases, the solution is laser treatment.
- Scars: As a child, you burnt your leg by accidentally placing it on the hot silencer of daddy’s bike? You may still have a scar to remind you of that incident!
- Scars happen after an injury to the skin’s collagen and elastin. If scarred, you may have to live with it. However, there is no reason why the new injuries have to have reminders for life. Skin discolorations, keloids or pockmarks from acne attacks, whatever the scar, there are multiple creams and laser options available to treat them.
- Age spots: Also called Liver spots, they have nothing to with either your age or liver. They are caused when your skin produces extra melanin to cope with your sun exposure. Alternate application of a bleaching cream like hydroquinone and an exfoliating cream like a retinoid based cream can help lighten the spots. Do this under your dermatologist’s guidance only. Other options include chemical peels and microdermablasion. Lasers are last option treatments for stubborn old spots.
- Eczema: This is a long-term skin disease, also known as atopic dermatitis. Most common symptoms include dry and itchy skin, rashes on the face, inside the elbows, behind the knees, and on the hands and feet. Currently, there is no single test to diagnose eczema, so doctors rely on information about you and your family. Treatment options do not include cure, only immediate relief from the inflammation and itching can be obtained.
- Hives: Hives are the red and sometimes itchy bumps on your skin. They usually appear as an allergic reaction to certain foods or drugs. People who have some form of other allergy are more likely to get hives than people who don’t have any allergy at all. Other causes include infections and stress. Hives usually go away on their own, but if you have a serious case, you might need medical help.
Skin is the largest organ of our body. It is the protective barrier between our body and the outer harmful world full of bacteria, viruses and other dangerous microbes. Hence, it becomes extremely essential that caring for our skin should find top spot on our health care list.