What is Aesthetic Dermatology
Aesthetic dermatology is treatment for the skin, hair or body that is meant to enhance the appearance of a patient.
It is dermatology that is focused on enhancing looks instead of eradicating disease. Aesthetic dermatology can have the beneficial side effects of improving self-confidence and self-perception, benefiting the patient’s mental health.
What is an Aesthetic Dermatologist
Every board certified dermatologist takes 3 years of specialized training on the structure and function of the skin as it relates to medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology. That knowledge and experience is tested on their board exams before receiving certification.
Due to this, there is no separate training to become an ‘aesthetic dermatologist,’ there are just dermatologists that practice aesthetic dermatology, doctors that do medical/surgical dermatology, and the ones who do both.
Are all Dermatologists Aesthetic Dermatologists?
Not all physicians are board certified in dermatology, which means that there can be a significant difference in training and experience between providers that advertise as specializing in cosmetic dermatology. Someone without board certification will not have the level of training or supervised experience a board certified dermatologist will have.
Any board certified dermatologist starts out with the education, experience and knowledge to do both medical and aesthetic dermatology, but many choose just one or the other. For those who choose medical dermatology and choose not to practice aesthetic or cosmetic dermatology their aesthetic dermatology skills and knowledge will continually atrophy due to not being used consistently. The same will also happen with anyone that chooses to focus primarily on cosmetic or aesthetic dermatology.
There is a reason that doctors have a ‘practice’, and that is because it is important to continually exercise and improve our skills as a doctor, whether it be for medical or aesthetic dermatology. This is the same with most any profession, the stakes are just especially high when you are dealing with people’s health and appearances.
If you are interested in any cosmetic procedures we highly recommend to first find a board certified dermatologist such as those at DCA, and second to make sure that your dermatologist regularly practices cosmetic or aesthetic dermatology along with medical dermatology.
Advantages of Working with a Medical Dermatologist who is also an Aesthetic Dermatologist
At Dermatology Center of Acadiana our doctors believe that having the dual focus of medical and aesthetic dermatology allows them to best serve their patients. This allows them to take knowledge and experience from both medical and aesthetic dermatology (or cosmetic dermatology) into account when treating their patients in order to best achieve their patient’s health and appearance goals.
This means that one doctor can make a comprehensive skin care plan where any necessary treatments or products will work together to achieve the best results. Without this cohesiveness a medical dermatologist may choose a treatment plan that does not work as well with the patient’s aesthetic goals or vice versa.
Another thing people can sometimes find confusing is the overlap between aesthetic or cosmetic dermatology and plastic surgery.
How is an Aesthetic Dermatologist Different from a Plastic Surgeon
A plastic surgeon and a dermatologist receive very different training and spend their days quite differently once they become board certified.
A plastic surgeon is trained predominantly in surgery and spends most of their time in the operating room. A dermatologist spends most of their time in clinical settings and generally focuses on skin health and eradicating skin diseases, non-invasive medical and aesthetic treatments, and some in office surgeries such as removing skin cancers or other non-cancerous lesions in the skin.
Aesthetic and cosmetic dermatology is one area there can be overlap between the two professions. Both can administer BOTOX, dermal fillers, or a number of other aesthetic treatments, but a dermatologist is generally best qualified to pair these with skin care products, chemical peels, laser treatments, etc to get the best results. They can discuss with you options most appropriate for your skin type and goals due to their extensive focus, knowledge and training specifically on the skin.
Aesthetic Dermatology or Plastic Surgery?
In our practice, we aim to have the utmost safety and get the best results for our patients while being as minimally invasive as possible. While in extreme cases such as a large skin cancer, this can require collaboration with a plastic surgeon, we have found that we are able to treat almost all of our patients in house without a need for plastic surgery. The option to refer to a surgeon is determined on a case by case basis. In those cases in which doing so is deemed appropriate, we would be happy to recommend someone that will meet your needs.
Aesthetic Dermatology Procedures Offered at DCA
Dermatology Center of Acadiana offers a range of aesthetic dermatology (or cosmetic dermatology) procedures to help our patients achieve various goals. Here is a quick summary of the aesthetic procedures we offer and what their goals are:
BOTOX treatments: Primarily used to treat wrinkles around the eyes (crow’s feet) or forehead lines, but can also have a number of other applications.
Dermal fillers: Used to restore volume to skin that is lost due to aging around the cheekbones or mouth, but can also be used to add body to the lips or to aging hands.
Chemical peels: Uses medical grade chemicals not available over the counter to correct uneven skin tone or texture, fine lines and wrinkles, or to improve complexion.
Mole removal: Moles can be removed for testing purposes or for aesthetic reasons. Both tend to be quick and easy procedures.
Laser treatment for tattoo removal: We use one of the most advanced lasers on the market that has different wavelengths to target different types of ink, ink depths and different skin types.
Laser treatment for pigmented lesions: Laser treatment can be used to fade a number of skin pigmentation issues, including melasma, sun spots and brown spots.
Laser treatment for vascular lesions: Advances in laser therapy have allowed dermatologists to have a more effective means for treating vascular lesions and spider veins with better results.
Laser hair removal treatment: Laser hair removal treatment has become much more effective at treating hair types of all different colors in recent years. This means that whether you have hair in unwanted or embarrassing places or just don’t want to have to deal with shaving, plucking or waxing anymore, laser hair removal is a viable long-term solution.
Kybella double chin reduction: Kybella is used to help minimize and get rid of a double chin. It utilizes a natural fat burning substance to dissolve the fat below the chin.
Micro-needling: Micro-needling can be used for a number of reasons, including lessening fine lines or wrinkles, shrinking large pores, or correcting skin texture issues. The small needles are engineered to stimulate the natural production of regenerative collagen by your skin.
Silkpeel Mmcrodermabrasion: Professional level exfoliation with a diamond tipped device to take away dead skin cells on the surface, unclog the pores, and let the younger, healthier skin beneath shine through.
Dermaplaning: Dermaplaning is another means of exfoliating the skin that also focuses on removing fine hairs from the face.
Interested in any of these procedures or not sure what would be best for your skin type and goals? Make an appointment with a dermatologist or esthetician today to discuss your options!