Summer is Here!

Now that summer is in full swing, there are several problems you may want to tend to. Increased temperatures and humidity may encourage fungus infections which can appear as red, scaly, itchy rashes, often with a ringed or circular pattern. White spots on your back, chest and upper arms may mean you have the fungus, tinea versicolor. This should be treated early when first noticed because the spores or seeds tend to spread and create new growths. Scaly, itching rashes between the toes, on the ankles or around the heels could mean that you have foot fungus or athletes foot. Thick yellow nails may harbor fungus and be the source of infection. Be sure you aren’t pressured into using the new but very expensive nail fungus lotions. Our approach to clearing thick yellow nails works much better, is less expensive and is only used by our office.

With increased leg activity, heat and humidity groin rashes are prone to occur. Wearing loose cotton clothing is wise. If redness, soreness or itching develops, early care and proper medication will stop the infection.

Wearing loose, well ventilated but well fitted sandals, clogs or loafers is much better than tennis shoes which can cause allergic and heat reactions.

Warts and callouses are much more apt to be a problem when summer activities become more rigorous. We have a unique method to control them. Our own technique causes little pain or scarring and is very successful killing warts. Our cure rate is about 100%!

It’s time to stock up on sun screen lotion! Buy a lotion with an SPF rating of 100, but make sure that it’s non-comedogenic. Remember, if you are sweating or swimming, you need to apply it more than once each day. Wear a cap, or better yet, a hat to keep the sun out of your eyes and shade your skin. Eyes are hurt by the sun too. It’s best to plan activities before 10 a.m. or after 4 p.m. when the sun isn’t so intense. Remember, the younger the child or the lighter anyone’s complexion, the more there is apt to be sun burn and permanent damage. Backs and necks burn too. Sun resistant clothing is now available. Caps, umbrellas and shade trees all help. Drinking V8 juice or carrot juice provides a little protection if you drink enough to actually give your skin a yellow tint.

If you are using Retin-A for acne or wrinkles, use it at night and be even more careful about wearing sun screen. Know that retinol doesn’t work. It is designed to confuse people wanting Retin-A, which is a prescription.

While it’s always a good time to have your skin checked for precancerous spots, now is best because your skin is as light as it will be all year. As you tan you will not only encourage sun induced spots, precancerous or cancerous lesions and moles will be less apparent as your skin darkens around them.

We are discovering a melanoma a week, which probably saves a life each week. Early detection and prompt proper removal is the best defense against melanoma or any skin cancer. Remember an American dies of melanoma every hour. Almost always it’s because of lack of attention or information on the part of the patient or a mistake on the part of the health care examiner. 98% of the melanomas we find have been missed. When evaluating moles or cancer, there is no substitution for specific interest, training and experience. Practice makes perfect! We’d had the most practice!

Posted in Cosmetic Dermatology, Medical Dermatology, Skin Cancer.