November has been declared National Healthy Skin Month, and it is a great time to think about your skin’s health as we transition to cooler weather from the summer. The skin is the body’s largest organ, so it is of utmost importance to make skin health a priority.
Self-care is critical, for both mental and physical health. Making skin care a priority in your health care regimen is a big part of self-care! Not only will it help you to pay more attention to your skin’s health, but it also puts you in an active role for finding and identifying potential health problems. Read on to find out what you could be doing to take an active role in your skin’s health.
Stop. Smoking. Now.
If you are one of the approximately 36.5 million Americans who smoke, you are not doing your skin any favors. Smoking constricts blood flow to the skin, which interferes with the skin’s ability to heal, and is a contributing factor to wrinkles. Smoking also leads to the lines that form around the mouths and eyes of smokers from puckering up to inhale. It is not just blood flow that is affected by smoking, but also the nutrients that are getting to your skin as well. The thousands of chemicals in cigarette smoke, impede your body from getting proper nutrients and oxygen, which can lead to collagen and elastin destruction. If you are struggling to quit, please visit Smokefree.gov for some excellent resources that can help you improve your quality of life (and skin!).
Fluids: Outside and In
Skin care starts from within, so it makes sense that adequate hydration would be important to skin health. Drinking adequate fluids throughout the day helps to keep your body hydrated, which in turn helps prevent your skin from turning dry and flaky. Even so, water consumed typically reaches other organs first, so it is also important to make sure you are hydrating from the outside as well. Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Dupree like Skin Medica’s HA5 to give your skin luxurious hydration. If you are looking to help rejuvenate your skin
Use Sunscreen Every day
If you plan to walk outside, plan to wear sunscreen. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends a sunscreen that has: an SPF of 30 or higher; broad-spectrum protection; and is water resistant. Up to 80% of harmful UV rays can penetrate your skin, even on cloudy days, so do not let the sun be your guide on whether or not to slather it on. Here’s our 5 recommendations for how to choose a sunscreen, or you can take a look at one of our recommended brands. We carry EltaMD, Revision, Obagi, and SkinMedica sunscreens. Please call Dermatology Center of Acadiana at to inquire about your favorite.
Complete a Monthly Skin Self Exam
Know your body and monitor any moles or lesions on the skin by doing a monthly skin self-exam from head to toe. Skin cancer can develop anywhere on the body, so a thorough examination from scalp to toes is key. The American Academy of Dermatology has put together a helpful infographic to show how and where on the body to look during this exam, as well as what to watch for.
Use High Quality Skincare Products
We have so many wonderful skin care products available at DCA! However, the difficult part of skin care is that a good product is not good for every person. We all have different skin types, needs and concerns. What one person struggles with may not affect the next. Or what may bother one person may not bother the next. Having someone with the knowledge and understanding about different skin types, like a board certified dermatologist or a well educated and experienced esthetician, is a priceless tool to help you reach YOUR goals. One of the unfortunate truths about skin care is that you do tend to get what you pay for. However, when you team up with someone that truly understands your skin, you will receive a customized regimen for your skin type to meet your goals which in the long run will be a much more cost effective approach than going one by one through every product at the drug store, make up counter, Sephora and Ulta!
Dermatologists diagnose and treat thousands of skin conditions and see patients of all ages. To be board certified, a doctor must complete complete three years of additional training in skin diseases, and complete comprehensive exams on the information learned throughout their residency in this highly competitive program. Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Dupree at Dermatology Center of Acadiana are all certified by the American Board of Dermatology. When you make an appointment with a board certified dermatologist at DCA, you are entrusting your skin health to someone with the knowledge and experience to treat it.To schedule your next skin check or consultation with a board certified dermatologist in Lafayette, Louisiana, please call us at (337)235-6886.