Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Age-Fighting Skin Treatments for Men

June is Men’s Health Month, and at Greenville Dermatology we understand your need to prolong the aging process as much as possible. Fine lines, wrinkles, and aging of the skin are all a part of getting older. At Greenville Dermatology we are dedicated to helping men find effective and personalized solutions that will work in extending your young and healthy looking skin.

Below are three age-fighting skin treatments for men that can be practiced on a daily basis.

1. Wear Sunscreen

Wearing sunscreen is vital to reducing the effects of the aging process. Sun damage contributes to 80% of the signs of aging in adults. Constant application of sunscreen can also reduce the risk of obtaining skin cancer.  While outside, constantly apply sunscreen to the face and exposed areas of the body to reduce the chance of developing sun spots or dark spots. Most people only put sunscreen on during the summer months. However, it is important to remember to put sunscreen on year round.

2. Cleanse Your Skin Both Day and Night

A good cleanser is a great anti-aging regime that will help stop the buildup of oil and dirt. Men, a cleanser does not mean just your normal soap and water! At your next visit to Greenville Dermatology ask us what cleansers are best for your skin type. If you cleanse both morning and night you can find your skin to be more refreshed and rejuvenated. 

3. Find a Good Moisturizer

Every morning after cleansing and shaving it is important to moisturize your face. When you moisturize you are locking in water that will help revitalize skin by hiding wrinkles and fine lines. Additionally, moisturizing is beneficial because it helps sooth your skin after shaving.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Skin Cancer Rates Rising in Young

I’ve had parents bring in children with stiches or facial injuries wanting to know how to prevent scars.  Often my advice is to simply keep the area free from infection and apply a broad spectrum sunscreen.  A scar may develop, but with children the overall likelihood is that over time it will fade.  This, however, doesn’t work with sun damage.  A burn will be replaced by new skin, but under the surface the damage is cumulative.  It builds over a lifetime increasing the risk for developing skin cancer.  And just so you know, experts agree that a serious burn at age 4 poses much more danger than the same burn at age 25. 

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month.  With an increasing number of teens and young adults now being diagnosed with skin cancer, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is recommending that pediatricians and primary doctors start stressing prevention during well-visits.  My recommendation for parents is to make sun-smart behaviors a habit while children are young.  It’s really no different than teaching kids to wear a seatbelt or bicycle helmet.

  • Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen on all exposed areas year-round.
  •  Use broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher on the entire body and long-sleeved clothing and wide rim hats during any sun exposure.
  • Limit sun exposure to mornings and late afternoons when the sun is weaker.

Monday, May 14, 2012


Skin cancer has the advantage of being the only cancer that can be seen on the surface of the skin.  By performing a skin self-exam, you can detect early the warning signs of skin cancer and increase your chances of a good outcome with early treatment.  Adults should regularly examine their skin once a month looking for abnormal skin growths and changes.

Although basal cell carcinomas usually appear on sun damaged, over-exposed areas of the skin, skin cancer can appear anywhere on the body.   In a self –exam it is important to check the all over the scalp, soles of the feet, the palms of the hands, and even beneath finger and toenails.

The American Academy of Dermatology has published a Body Mole Map on their website at http://www.aad.org/spot-skin-cancer/understanding-skin-cancer/how-do-i-check-my-skin.  It walks you through how to do a skin exam, the ABCDE’s of evaluating moles, and how to map and record your findings.

To begin it is helpful to have a full length mirror, a handheld mirror, plenty of light, and the Body Mole Map or similar.   Some things to look for are:

Moles that are different from the rest, itches, bleeds, or is changing in any way — even if the mole is    smaller than 6 millimeters (about the size of a pencil eraser)
Sores that never fully heal
Translucent growths with rolled edges
Brown or black streaks underneath a nail
Clusters of slow-growing, shiny pink or red lesions
Waxy-feeling scars
Flat or slightly depressed lesions that feel hard to the touch

If you find a suspicious lesion, see a dermatologist. Skin cancer has a high cure rate when detected early.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Screen the Ones You Love

May is National Skin Cancer Awareness Month and this May the American Academy of Dermatology hopes that in addition to brunch and flowers you’ll honor Mom (and next month Dad) with a skin cancer screening. 

Based on current estimates more than 2 million people in the United States are diagnosed with skin cancer annually.  You may think that’s a small number based on total population, but the fact is 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime.  Not to use an obvious scare tactic, but think about  how many loved ones you have. 

Unfortunately, even with awareness campaigns, incidence rates of melanoma among whites have been increasing 3 percent per year since 2004.  And although before age 40, melanoma rates are higher in women than men, after 40, the rates are almost twice as high in men.  The good news is that the 5 year survival rate for those who catch and treat it before it spreads to the lymph nodes is 98 percent. 

To minimize the risk of skin cancer, make sure your parents and loved ones understand their risk factors and methods of prevention.  If, however, you’d like to spoil Mom this Mother’s Day as well, we are having a special.  Buy a $150 gift certificate and get a $50 gift certificate for free. 

Happy Mother’s Day!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

New Labels for Summer

As we kick off National Skin Cancer Awareness Month this May, it’s important to know that the Food and Drug Administration has issued new labeling rules for sunscreen manufacturers that will become effective June 14, 2012.  No longer will you see the words “sunblock”, “sweat proof”, “waterproof”, or “all day protection”.  If you’ve ever stood in the drug store aisle wondering how to evaluate differing sunscreen claims and SPF’s, the new rules should make your next purchase easier.

Going forward manufacturers will not be able to use language that overstates their product’s effectiveness.  The labels will now clearly state whether a sunscreen protects against sunburn, skin cancer and signs of premature skin aging.  If a label reads “broad spectrum” and has an SPF of 15 or higher, it will protect against all three, but even then it will not be allowed to claim to provide sun protection for more than two hours without reapplication.

For sunscreen products that are not broad spectrum or that are broad spectrum but with an SPF value between 2 and 14 will be labeled with a warning that reads: “Skin Cancer/Skin Aging Alert: Spending time in the sun increases your risk of skin cancer and early skin aging. This product has been shown only to help prevent sunburn, not skin cancer or early skin aging.”

No product can claim to provide “instant protection” and as far as being “water resistant” goes, new labels must clearly state whether a consumer can expect to maintain 40 or 80 minutes at the declared SPF level of protection while swimming or sweating, based on uniform testing standards.  Sunscreens that are not water resistant must include a direction instructing users to use a water-resistant sunscreen if swimming or sweating.

These new guidelines are meant to help consumers choose the right level of protection.  Remember that for prolonged exposure look for an SPF of 30 to 40 and that a full application is about two ounces – enough to fill a shot glass.