Most moles are benign and harmless, but what about dry, scabby moles? In a recent blog post for ScarySymptoms.com called “Scabby Dry Mole: Possible Melanoma or Benign?” Dr. Joel Schlessinger weighs in on what your mole’s appearance could be telling you.
A scabby, dry mole is generally not melanoma, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
If a mole has grown dry and/or scabby recently, there could be a number of different causes, and Dr. Schlessinger reassures that it is most likely not melanoma, a type of skin cancer. Often, a mole that has grown dry and scabby is simply an irritated mole. Everyday irritation can be difficult to pinpoint, but is often caused by scratching, friction from clothing, new personal care products and prolonged exposure to chemicals like chlorine.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains seborrheic keratoses.
A mole that has grown dry and scabby may not even be a mole at all. Seborrheic keratoses can look remarkably like moles or melanoma. In reality, a seborrheic keratosis is actually a benign growth often attributed to prolonged sun exposure and genetics. Seborrheic keratoses are typically black, brown or tan in appearance and could have a raised, scaly or waxy texture. They are often mistaken for warts or moles.
Seborrheic keratoses are normally painless and will not cause cancer, but they can change in appearance suddenly, even if they have looked one way for some time. This gives the illusion of a changing mole, one that could be developing into cancer. A changing seborrheic keratosis if not usually a cause for concern or removal unless it has grown to be a cosmetic nuisance or frequently bleeds from rubbing clothing.
Pay a visit to a dermatologist like Dr. Joel Schlessinger to get any suspicious growths inspected.
While a scabby, dry mole is probably nothing to worry about, prevention is key, and Dr. Schlessinger recommends seeing your dermatologist.
He advises: “If you have something on your body that is changing and shows odd symptoms such as this [scabby, dry mole], especially if it bleeds, it is time to see your dermatologist for an evaluation.”
Minoxidil, more commonly known as Rogaine, is a topical hair growth drug that is used to treat male pattern baldness, as well as hair loss in women. One common side effect of this drug is hair growth near the areas of application, such as facial hair growth in women. Some patients have also reported that they think Minoxidil has caused their hair to turn gray. In a recent article on ScarySymptoms.com, Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains a possible explanation behind this phenomenon.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains that Minoxidil could increase hair growth for both gray and colored hairs.
So far, there isn’t any clinical evidence of Minoxidil causing gray hair growth, and Dr. Joel Schlessinger hasn’t seen this effect on his patients.
“I haven’t seen the phenomenon of Rogaine [minoxidil] causing gray hair, but it is always possible that upon application it is spurring hair growth that encompasses gray hairs as well as regular colored hairs,” he tells ScarySymptoms.com.
Some patients do experience scalp irritation with liquid Minoxidil, Dr. Joel Schlessinger says.
“There are two formulations of Rogaine, and the foam is a much better tolerated form,” Dr. Joel Schlessinger explains. “The liquid form contains propylene glycol and that tends to cause scalp irritation.”
Patients can experience different side effects to the same medication. If you have scalp irritation or other concerns related to Minoxidil, talk to your doctor about different treatment options.
Do you have a question about hair growth treatments for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses hair loss from hair extensions and other styles at ScarySymptoms.com
Extensions have become wildly popular in recent years to help add volume, length and color to hair. However, before you consider trying this trend, it’s important to understand the issues that could arise. In a recent post on ScarySymptoms.com called, “Hair Loss from Clip-in Hair Extensions & Braids,” Dr. Schlessinger shares how hair extensions and tightly woven styles can cause hair loss.
Clip-in hair extensions can cause tension and pulling, cautions Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
The most important problem to keep in mind when it comes to clip-in extensions is the tension and pulling they can cause. Gradual hair loss from pulling force is called traction alopecia. It is most commonly seen in those individuals who frequently wear their hair in tight braids, buns or ponytails, but hair extensions are also a known culprit. The repetitive pulling or traction on hair roots can cause a prematurely receding hairline characterized by a sparse fringe of growth at the natural hairline. In the case of extensions, metal or plastic clips can weigh and drag hair down, causing a pattern of hair loss wherever they are placed. Extensions are also known to cause tangling, tearing and breakage when they get caught in hair, resulting in loss.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses treatment for traction alopecia.
Traction alopecia may cause scarring and permanent hair loss in some patients. For others, the condition is more temporary. The best thing you can do to address traction alopecia is remove all hair extensions and cease styling hair immediately. While permanent hair loss will not respond to topical treatments or supplements, you can prevent future loss.
For temporary hair loss from traction alopecia, certain supplements and topical solutions can help encourage healthy growth. Viviscal tablets contain a blend of vitamins and minerals that help strengthen and fortify hair at the root and promote healthy hair. These tablets nourish from within in four stages to help restore and replenish your tresses. Rene Furturer Triphasic Progressive Hair Loss Kit contains a pre-treatment, shampoo and fortifying treatment to increase microcirculation and help you achieve stronger, thicker, healthier hair.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger cites braided hairstyles as a leading cause of hair loss at his Omaha practice.
Hair extensions and tightly secured or plaited hairstyles are “a very significant cause of hair loss” at Dr. Schlessinger’s Omaha, Nebraska practice, and he recommends avoiding them if at all possible. However, if you choose to style your hair in braids or ponytails, you can secure or intertwine your stands more loosely. Dr. Schlessinger recommends styling hair in a low, loose ponytail with the hair tie away from the scalp. You can then braid the hair below the hair tie if you wish. This ensures that there is no traction or pulling between the scalp and the hair tie.
It’s often up to our parents and guardians to teach us proper hygiene as children. As we grow, good habits may fall by the wayside, or we may realize that we have gaps in our knowledge for how to effectively care for different parts of our bodies. In a recent Women’s Health Magazine article featured on lifehacker.com, Dr. Schlessinger shared tips for cleansing the face and body.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends changing out washcloths and loofahs regularly.
Showering may appear to be one of the most straightforward areas of personal care, but it’s always a good idea to return to basics to ensure you’re giving yourself the best cleanse possible. In addition to making sure the water isn’t too hot and you’re using the best cleansing products for your skin type, you’ll want to examine any tools you may be using. “Washcloths and loofahs can harbor bacteria, mold and yeast,” Dr. Schlessinger cautions, and this could harm skin in the long run.
You should replace loofahs once a month and store them outside of the moisture-filled shower if possible. Washcloths should be switched out every day and they should not be used on the face: “This is very irritating to the skin and ends up causing dry areas, breakouts and even sores.” Dr. Schlessinger recommends using your clean hands to avoid contaminating the face with impurities.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger encourages building on good habits.
Good habits build a solid foundation for good hygiene, and even if you can identify certain areas of your routine that are lacking, you can still tack positive actions onto the good habits you do have. For example, if you brush your teeth once every day in the morning, continue to do so, and add an evening teeth-brushing session. If you are used to overly hot, skin-drying showers, gradually reduce the temperature over a week.
The article stresses the importance of mastering the basics, which include, “clean[ing] yourself regularly, groom[ing] your hair neatly,” and brushing your teeth for two minutes two or three times a day. Doing so will ensure that you’re always putting your best self forward.
Do you have a question about proper hygiene or cleansing for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Let us know in the comments section.
Wrinkles are a part of life, but there are some habits that are more likely to cause wrinkles. Dr. Joel Schlessinger recently shared a few of these habits with Prevention.com in an article titled “6 Everyday Habits That Are Giving You More Wrinkles.” In the article, he also discusses what you can do to minimize these fine lines.
Chewing gum leads to fine lines around the mouth, Dr. Joel Schlessinger shares.
Chewing on a stick of gum leads to wrinkles because it forces your mouth to continually form different shapes.
“For frequent chewers, those formations end up resulting in a downward turn in the corners of the mouth, as well as a pronounced muscle at the bottom of the jawline,” says Dr. Joel Schlessinger. Once these lines form, he added, they are difficult to undo.
Instead of chewing gum, choose mints, breath strips or mouth wash to freshen your breath. These alternatives don’t require continual chewing, delaying the appearance of wrinkles around the mouth.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger suggests putting down the smartphone for fewer wrinkles.
Constantly staring at your phone or tablet could cause wrinkles to form below your chin and on your neck. This is because looking down at your phone causes you to hold your neck at an unusual angle. The immediate results are a sore neck and strained eyes but Dr. Joel Schlessinger says other issues could develop over time, including stubborn neck wrinkles.
Dr. Schlessinger suggests looking at your gadgets in a more ergonomic way, such as with a tablet stand, which will help prevent the formation of these deep lines.
Do you have a question about wrinkles for Dr. Joel Schlessinger? Share with us in the comments.
The number of skin cancer cases is on the rise and no one is exempt, not even stars like Hugh Jackman and Kenny Rogers. The two stars, who were both recently diagnosed with skin cancer, were featured in a recent Globe article, “5 Deadly Myths About Skin Cancer,” that also features Dr. Joel Schlessinger as an expert. In the article, Dr. Joel Schlessinger reveals the truth behind several well-known myths about skin cancer.
Myths about sunscreens prevent people from properly protecting themselves, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
Contrary to popular belief, a high SPF is not the only factor you need to look at when determining whether your sun protection is adequate. Dr. Joel Schlessinger says you must look for a product that is broad spectrum because it protects against both UVA and UVB rays. It is also important to choose a water-resistant formula and to reapply at least every two hours.
There are also misconceptions about tanning and the use of tanning salons. Many people believe that using a tanning bed is safer than tanning outdoors. This, however, is untrue. You are exposed to just as many dangerous UV rays in a tanning bed as outside. No tan is a safe tan and receiving a tan does not prevent burning or protect the skin against further damage.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger reminds people that everyone is at risk for skin cancer.
It is a common misconception that only fair-skinned people are at risk of sun damage. Everyone, no matter how dark or light their skin tone, is at risk for UV damage and skin cancer. While many believe that women are more at risk, studies reveal that men often account for more cases because they are reluctant to wear sun protection.
Do you have questions about the signs or dangers of skin cancer? Ask Dr. Joel Schlessinger for the answers in the comments section.
Laser hair removal is becoming more and more popular because it saves time and effort when it comes to keeping skin smooth and hair-free. Before you decide to undergo this treatment, however, you should know what the process will involve. In a recent article on WomensHealthMag.com, Joel Schlessinger MD shares insider information about this procedure. These tips will help you determine whether this treatment is the best choice for you.
Joel Schlessinger MD outlines which patients are likely to see the best success.
Laser hair removal works by targeting the pigment in hair. For this reason, the procedure works best for individuals with dark hair. It is difficult for the laser to pick up blonde, grey and red hair so individuals with these colors may not experience optimal results. There are also certain machines that do not work with tan or dark skin tones because there is not enough contrast between the hair and skin colors.
Joel Schlessinger MD also wants patients to know that they will have to make multiple appointments for hair removal. The best results occur when patients make consistent follow-up appointments every four to six weeks. Certain areas such as the body can require eight to ten sessions while the face may only take six to eight sessions.
Prepare for your treatment with these tips from Joel Schlessinger MD.
Laser hair removal devices target the hair follicles so do not wax or pluck the area for a few weeks before your treatment. This ensures that follicles are in the proper stage of growth for the best results. You will, however, want to shave the area so the laser can precisely focus on the root of the hair.
Do you have more questions about laser hair removal for Joel Schlessinger MD? Ask in the comments section.
There are a vast number of products designed for all different skin types available on the market today. That’s why you shouldn’t just pick up any old cleanser! In the article, “Scrub It: The Best Facial Cleanser for Your Skin Type,” Dr. Schlessinger talks to DivineCaroline.com about the best facial cleanser for skin type.
Dr. Schlessinger talks about the best cleansers for normal to dry skin.
To find the best cleanser for you, you’ll first need to determine your skin type. If you have normal skin, you probably maintain a healthy balance of moisture and oil unless there are extenuating circumstances (spending a day outside in cold winter temperatures, for example). For normal skin, try LovelySkin Cleanser – Regular. Made with medical-grade ingredients, this cleanser helps to purify pores and create a soft, smooth texture.
Dry skin types struggle with tightness, flakiness and occasional irritation. The best cleansers for dry skin are those that contain humectants. Dr. Schlessinger recommends Avene Cold Cream Ultra-Rich Cleansing Gel for dry skin. This non-drying, soap-free cleanser gently cleanses and nourishes the skin, leaving a protective barrier so that skin stays smooth, soft and hydrated.
Oily skin types need a cleanser that contains acne-fighting ingredients, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
If you have oily skin, you may notice that your complexion appears shiny or greasy by early afternoon. If you need to blot or powder your nose and forehead often and your skin is prone to frequent breakouts, you probably have oily skin. One of Dr. Schlessinger’s favorite cleansers for oily skin is Obagi CLENZIderm MD Daily Care Foaming Cleanser. This award-winning cleanser contains 2% salicylic acid to stop acne-causing bacteria in its tracks.
Combination skin types find that some parts of their face are oily while others are dry. The areas around the nose, mouth and forehead may be oily while the cheeks and hairline are dry and sensitive. For combination skin, you’ll want a cleanser that will wash away impurities and provide much-needed moisture to problem areas. EltaMD Foaming Facial Cleanser lathers into a rich foam to remove dirt, oil and other debris. The oil-free, pH-balanced formula won’t disturb the skin’s natural moisture barrier or clog pores.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger recommends La Roche-Posay Toleriane for sensitive skin.
Those with sensitive skin often experience a tight, itchy complexion and find that many products cause redness and irritation. Sensitive skin is also often highly reactive to environmental stressors.
If you have sensitive skin, it’s especially important to choose products that don’t contain harsh chemicals, fragrances or exfoliants. Dr. Schlessinger recommends La Roche-Posay Toleriane Purifying Foaming Cream for sensitive skin. This cleanser is perfect for those who struggle with eczema, atopic dermatitis and other conditions that leave skin compromised. The gentle, soothing cream gently removes oil, makeup and other debris while hydrating the skin to prevent over-drying.
Do you have a question about choosing the right cleanser? Let us know in the comments section.
Are lip textures like fingerprints? Does each person have a unique texture that could determine the type of lip colors and products that work best for them? It’s certainly a possibility! Recently, Dr. Joel Schlessinger sat down with BeautyHigh.com to examine these questions in the article, “Our Lips Aren’t All the Same: Why Some Lipsticks Work Better On You.”
Moisture level plays a key role in the application of lip products, says Dr. Joel Schlessinger.
Lip moisture levels vary from person to person due to genetics, habits, climate, and even the other products in your skin care and beauty routine. The amount of moisture in your lips determines the types of products that work well for you as well as the longevity of your lip color. “For some, [low moisture levels] could allow less lipstick to stay on, while many folks are able to go without [applying] lipstick for periods of time due to the extra moisture,” says Dr. Schlessinger.
Dr. Joel Schlessinger discusses common causes of dry skin and lips.
If you struggle with dry skin, you probably find yourself reaching for lip balm just as often as body lotion. Those with dry skin often have dry lips as well, and medication could be a contributing factor to stubborn dryness. Dr. Schlessinger reminds us, “Patients who are on Accutane or other drying medications also have trouble with dry lips. Without moisture, any lip color you apply will wear off quickly.”
Age also factors into lip texture. As we get older, our lips often change, losing moisture and volume just as our skin does. This will cause fine lines to appear, lip texture to become rough or uneven and lip color to grow dull.
Try FixMySkin Healing Lip Balm, developed by Dr. Joel Schlessinger, to keep lips smooth and hydrated.
To keep lips full and young-looking and help keep lip colors in place, choose FixMySkin Healing Lip Balm with 1% Hydrocortisone. Available in unflavored and vanilla, this lip balm doesn’t just hydrate lips, it heals them. FixMySkin helps to repair damage with 1% hydrocortisone and nourishing shea and cocoa butters.
Do you have a question for Dr. Schlessinger about lip texture? Let us know in the comments section.
Thinning hair is an issue that affects about 35 million men around the world. While there are some medical solutions that can help, you can also combat this common issue by using shampoos that encourage healthier, stronger hair growth. In a recent article, “5 Great Shampoos for Guys with Thinning Hair” on ModernMan.com, Joel Schlessinger MD recommends his favorite shampoos for men who are experiencing thinning or loss of hair.
One approach, says Joel Schlessinger MD, is to rebuild and strengthen the hair that you have.
Thinning hair can be caused by a number of issues including medications and aging. Taking care of both your hair and your scalp can help combat thinning hair. If your hair is lacking volume or breaks easily, choose a strengthening and thickening shampoo such as Jack Black True Volume Thickening Shampoo.
“This made-for-men shampoo contains potent body-building ingredients that dive deep into each hair shaft for a volumized, full appearance,” says Joel Schlessinger MD.
Joel Schlessinger MD points out the importance of taking care of your scalp.
Without a healthy scalp, your hair will be weak and limp. Stimulating the scalp improves microcirculation to strengthen roots and prevent fallout. Rene Furterer FORTICEA Stimulating Shampoo contains a blend of botanicals that encourages circulation to promote healthy and strong strands. The microbeads in this formula invigorate the scalp as it removes dirt, oil and debris.
If you are using a thinning hair treatment or serum, it is important to start with a good shampoo. According to Joel Schlessinger MD, Osmotics FNS Revitalizing Shampoo works best as a preparatory step for hair loss treatments. It removes debris and encourages hair follicles to open up, allowing the advanced ingredients to work effectively.
Ask Joel Schlessinger MD questions below in the comments section.