June is Men’s Health Month. The aim of Men’s Health Month is to heighten awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of diseases among men and boys. At SkinMD Seattle Laser & Aesthetic Medical Clinic while our primary focus is on delivering excellence in medical aesthetics treatments on the face and body, our physician and facial cosmetic specialist is able to answer your questions about any skin concerns you may have in the course of your visits. We are continually educating men and women about the best ways to reduce their risks for developing skin cancer and correcting skin changes that may contribute to the development of skin cancer, or premature aging.
You have likely heard this before: Your skin is your body’s largest organ and weighs approximately 8 pounds, covering over 22 square feet. Your skin has 7 fundamental but critical functions:
Protection: your skin acts as a barrier, protecting the body from water loss and dehydration, Ultraviolet (UV) light, microorganisms, environmental pollution and physical damage.
Sensation: your skin contains millions of nerve endings that transmit stimuli and allow you to detect sensations of pain, pressure, heat and cold.
Movement: your skin allows you to flex and move.
Vitamin D Production: your skin can make vitamin D3 called cholecalciferol, when exposed to UV radiation. D3 then gets transported to the liver and then the kidney for activation and conversion to the active form, calcitriol, which is critical for the normal absorption of calcium and phosphorus. While research shows that moderate sun exposure is ideal for the production of vitamin D, it turns out that cumulative exposure and intense exposure to UV light is implicated in increased risk for skin cancer and premature aging. Thanks to more awareness about foods high in vitamin D and vitamin D supplementation in foods like milk, orange juice and soymilk.
Absorption: thousands of pores located on the surface of the skin allow you to absorb water, oxygen, vitamins and acids in order to provide moisture and nourishment to our skin.
Excretion: your skin is the body’s largest waste removal system. Toxins are released through the sweat glands and pores.
Regulation of body temperature: your skin regulates your body’s temperature by sweating or perspiring. Water and salt from secreted sweat on the skin evaporates, dissipating body heat and cooling the body.
Playing such an important role in your overall health and functionality, it is important to protect and take care of your skin. Following are some of the most common skin concerns that men seek care for and preventative measures you can take to keep it happy and functioning optimally:
Acne: acne flare-ups or pimples are exacerbated by humidity, stress, sweating and steroid use. Use of an OTC 5% Benzoyl Peroxide skin wash has an anti-bactericidal effect on the P. acnes bacteria and can be helpful to control breakouts.
-More severe acne may need assessment in treatment by a medical professional that specializes in acne care.
-Skin peels are used to regulate oil production in oily, acne-prone skin types and to reduce breakouts
Acne scars can include post-inflammatory hyper or hypopigmentation, hypertrophic, or atrophic scars after the acute acne breakout has resolved. Treatments for acne scars include punch excision, soft tissue fillers, chemical peels, microneedling, Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), TCA CROSS and intralesional steroid injections. Treatments depend upon the severity and depth of the scars.
Pseudofollicolitis Barbae (PFB), also known as Razor Bumps: an inflammatory or foreign body reaction surrounding ingrown hairs after shaving, plucking, tweezing in men and women with curly hair. PFB can be minimized with the following practices:
-Shave with warm water and use of new, sharp razors
-use of a lubricant, such soap or a shaving gel, or cream
-shave with the grain of the hair
-apply a vitamin E based product, soothing aftershave lotion or an aloe-based or cortisone cream after shaving to calm inflammation.
-when all else fails and PFB is persistent or worsening, permanent laser hair reduction is a great option to resolve unwanted hair growth and remove the need for shaving.
Sunburn: develops after ultraviolet light/radiation exposure with inadequate or no UV protection. With sunburns you will often experience skin redness, burning sensation, itching or pain. As skin heals after sunburn dryness, rough texture, patchy pigmentation, and skin flaking may occur. Ultraviolet (UV) rays cause more than 90% of the visible signs of aging, which include wrinkles, skin discoloration (also known as age spots and brown spots), rough skin texture, and skin laxity/ sagging. Remember to apply a broad-spectrum (UVA/ UVB), antioxidant-fortified sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. Don’t forget to reapply throughout the day and to wear SPF-rated sunglasses and wide brim hats to ensure good UV protection! Heads up that the skin changes that begin in the skin following today’s sunburn will very likely not present on the surface of your skin for three to five years or longer; as dark/brown spots (age spots), precancerous actinic keratosis and cancerous lesion such as melanoma and basal or squamous cell cancer as well as sallowness, and dilated small blood vessel or telangiectasias.
Rosacea: with a flushed, red appearance most often on the face, this chronic inflammatory skin condition cannot be cured. Men often seek care for control and reduction of persistent facial redness and associated skin vascularity, when they start to notice reddening and enlargement of their nose or when they are tired of being perceived as appearing flustered or as heavy drinkers. As a physician-led medical clinic, we can recommend prescription medications, advanced topical formulations and various non-invasive treatments to manage your symptoms. As with reducing premature skin aging, daily use of sunscreens, tracking your triggers, limiting alcohol and spicy foods may help keep your rosacea under control.
Dark Under Eye Circles: dark pigmentation or shadowing under the eyes tend to contribute to a look of tiredness, poor health or sadness and may be caused by heredity, allergies, lack of sleep, too much dietary salt intake, hyperpigmentation and soft tissue aging changes. Common treatments to improve under eye dark circles include:
-increasing your hydration/ water intake
-managing congestion from allergies by taking an antihistamine
-microneedling + eye serums to boost collagen production
-use of products with vitamin C to lighten the hyperpigmentation
-dermal filler or PRP injection treatments
Wrinkles: wrinkles are folds, ridges or creases in the skin. Aging, loss of soft tissue and bone mass, smoking and UV exposure are the most common contributing factors to the formation of wrinkles. Treatments to minimize the appearance of wrinkles include:
-Retinoids, (vitamin A derivatives) help reduce wrinkling, uneven pigmentation and skin roughness
-Alpha-hydroxy acids (fruit acids) including lactic acid and glycolic acid, can provide subtle improvements to wrinkles, while antioxidants such as vitamins B, C and E, in skin care products improve wrinkles and brighten the skin
-Superficial peels, also known as lunchtime peels are used at SkinMD Seattle to enhance the results of your skin rejuvenation regimen and improve the severity of fine and mild wrinkles
-medium and deep peels, containing combinations of trichloroacetic acid (TCA), resorcinol and phenol provide more dramatic and long-lasting smoothing of deeper or etched in wrinkles, as they penetrate much deeper. Medium and deep peels may also be beneficial for improvement of scars or precancerous growths
-Microdermabrasion, a noninvasive treatment that gentle and effectively removes the thick, uneven outer skin surface Microdermabrasion can help smooth out superficial wrinkles as texture is improved, surface epidermis is strengthened and new collagen production is stimulated
-Non-invasive laser skin tightening can be very beneficial as it stimulates the production of new collagen, and plumps the skin
-microneedling, a treatment also known as collagen induction therapy, uses small needles to prick the skin and generate new collagen. As new collagen is generated, skin tissue becomes smoother, firmer and toner
-injections of botulinum toxin (Botox Cosmetic, Jeuveau, Xeomin) temporarily relax the muscles of facial expression act on skin over time to that produce fine lines and wrinkles. Wrinkle relaxing treatments last three to four months and require repeat treatments to maintain results
-soft tissue or dermal fillers (Bellafill, Juvederm family of fillers, Radiesse and Belotero), used alone or in conjunction with botulinum toxin, can provide temporary improvement in the appearance of wrinkles and skin folds for up to 5 years
If you are interested in learning more about how you can have youthful yet vital appearance, contact us today at SkinMD Seattle and schedule your consultation to learn more about non-invasive face and body rejuvenation services for men at the clinic. Our team proudly serves the Seattle, Washington, area, and we can help you look and feel your best. Explore your aesthetic enhancement treatment options today! Remember that UV protection, healthy skin and aesthetic treatments are not for women only! Call SkinMD Seattle at 206-202-8619 to schedule your skin and complexion analysis and facial mapping with Dr. Balogun and SkinMD Seattle skin experts.