Rosacea: myths, reality and treatment

What is rosacea?

Rosacea is a skin condition in which your face tends to appear red and inflamed with periods of worsening and improvement over months to years. Individuals with rosacea may flush easily or develop what looks like acne breakouts. It can occur in all ages or ethnicities but tends to be most common in white, middle-aged adults.

How common is rosacea?

Rosacea is extremely common with an estimated 14 million Americans suffering from the condition. Some notable sufferers include former President Bill Clinton, J.P. Morgan, W.C. Fields, Rembrandt and Rosie O’Donnell — not to mention Santa Claus and, most likely, Rudolph!

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Melanoma, the deadliest and most preventable skin disease

Melanoma is the deadliest and most preventable skin disease. It is a skin cancer arising from melanocytes, skin cells that carry pigment also know as melanin, which gives skin its color. Melanocytes are the cells that also form benign (non-cancerous) moles known as nevi. The distinction between harmless moles and potentially deadly melanoma can be challenging even for the most experienced dermatologists.

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Dermatology throughout your lifetime

Our skin goes through many changes as we age. Each stage is marked with some specific findings that are more or less common, but it is normal to ask: “What is happening to my (or my child’s) skin and hair?”

Infants: Seborrheic dermatitis, or “cradle cap,” is very common in infants. While the condition will generally pass with use of gentle cleansers, in severe cases a prescription medication may be necessary. It is also important not to confuse run-of-the mill cradle cap with a true fungal infection.

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Skin Care Over 50

As we age our skin changes in many ways. For one, it loses some of the underlying layers of fat that give us a youthful appearance. Our skin also loses elasticity and tone, which leads to wrinkles, and becomes less able to retain moisture. The oil production glands on the face become smaller, as well.

While these changes are a normal part of aging, there are some things that can be done to slow the process and mask some of the appearance. Keep in mind that the key to skin care over the age of 50 is prevention, and consider adopting these healthy skin practices: