9 Reasons You Need To See A Dermatologist

9 reasons you need to see a dermatologist

Dermatologists are doctors who specialize in diagnosing and treating conditions involving the skin, hair, nails, and mucous membranes. There are many reasons people visit the dermatologist, ranging from purely cosmetic to deadly serious. Regardless, here are some reasons you need to see a dermatologist ASAP.

1. You don’t want to say the “C” word:

Yearly screening is recommended for early detection of skin cancer, and you should definitely make an appointment if any of your moles change shape, size, or color, or if you notice anything unusual on your skin

2. You look like you’ve been smoking pot:

If your eyes are red and irritated, it’s possible you have conjunctivitis, an infection of the mucous membranes of your eyes, which a dermatologist can diagnose and treat

3. You’re shedding like a Siberian husky during the summer:

Hair loss can be the result of many things, some of which can be cause for concern, and people often forget that hair is included in dermatology’s domain (bonus—they can help you get rid of that dusting of dandruff on your shoulders, too!)

4. The werewolf look isn’t “in” anymore:

Dermatologists can perform laser hair removal, giving you the sleek, hairless body of Michael Phelps (but sadly, not the athletic ability)

5. You’re afraid to get a mani/pedi:

Nothing is grosser than funky fingernails or toenails, and they can also indicate an underlying medical problem; “scaly, pitted, discolored, or brittle nails could signal a number of different health issues,” so get them looked at

6. There’s something wrong “down there”:

Don’t jump straight to STIs as the culprit; bumps and/or a rash around the genitals may be due to fungal or skin infection, so don’t blame your boyfriend just yet

7. You’re contemplating wearing a burka in public:

Dermatologists can help treat and reduce the appearance of scars resulting from acne, stretch marks, burns, or other injuries, boosting self-esteem and enabling you to show more skin

8. Your home remedies aren’t working:

Eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea are all chronic skin conditions that can be difficult to manage without professional guidance; although many home remedies abound, not all of them are effective or safe

9. You’re starting to look like the crypt keeper:

Dermatologists can help fight the signs of aging through chemical peels, laser therapy, Botox injections, or wrinkle filler (an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure though, so slather on that sunscreen while you’re young!)

10. You think you’re infected:

Skin infections can be caused by yeast, viruses (warts or herpes), fungus (athlete’s foot), bacteria (cellulitis), or parasites (scabies), and a dermatologist can accurately diagnose and effectively treat what’s going on, as well as determine whether or not it’s contagious

Dermatologists provide a wide array of services, some of which are purely cosmetic, so be prepared for the unfortunate reality that your insurance may not cover everything (although trust me, I could make a good argument for some cosmetic procedures being “medically necessary” to one’s mental health!). Also, do your research and find a good dermatologist—you don’t want just anybody telling you that mole is going to be the death of you.  

By Margaret Durkovic