My Blog
October 09, 2020
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Poison Ivy   Sumac   Oak   Rash   Itchy Skin  
ItchingSome many conditions and problems could lead to itchy skin; however, if you’ve been exposed to poison ivy, sumac, or oak you must be able to recognize the symptoms. It’s possible that you came into contact with poison ivy or any of these plants while on your typical walk or you may not even realize that the plants are hanging in your garden. If you do come into contact with poison ivy, sumac and oak here are what you should know.

You’re Allergic to the Oil from these Plants

Poison ivy secretes an oil known as urushiol. When a person comes in contact with the oils from these plants this causes an allergic reaction. You may notice a rash that forms in a straight line (as if you brushed against a poison ivy leaf). If you suspect that you’ve come into contact with poison ivy, sumac, or oak, it’s important to wash your clothes immediately and to take a shower to prevent the oils from spreading further.

You Can Usually Treat It Yourself

While the rash can be unpleasant, symptoms should go away within 2-3 weeks. Since the rash can be quite itchy and uncomfortable, here are some ways to ease your symptoms:
  • Take cool, oatmeal baths to alleviate inflammation and itching
  • Apply calamine lotions to the skin to temporarily alleviate itching
  • Steroid creams (aka: cortisone cream) may also alleviate redness and inflammation
  • Apply cold compresses to the area when symptoms flare-up
  • Whatever you do, do not scratch your rash (this can lead to an infection)
Severe Symptoms Warrant a Doctor’s Visit

Some people have severe allergic reactions when they come into contact with poison ivy, sumac, or oak. You must call your dermatologist as soon as possible if:
  • Pus develops on the rash
  • You also have a fever over 100 F
  • You experience severe itching
  • The rash keeps spreading
  • You aren’t sure whether the rash is caused by poison ivy, oak, or sumac
  • The rash spreads to the mouth or the eyes
  • Symptoms don’t improve within a week
From poison ivy rashes to psoriasis, a dermatologist can treat a wide range of skin conditions and provide you with the treatment you need. If you have concerns about symptoms you are experiencing, call your dermatologist right away.
September 24, 2020
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Scalp Psoriasis  
Scalp PsoriasisDealing with an itchy, flaky scalp? It could be dandruff or it could be a sign that you’re dealing with a common condition known as scalp psoriasis. Scalp psoriasis isn’t just the result of a dry scalp, it’s an autoimmune disorder. Of course, it’s important to be able to pinpoint the warning signs of scalp psoriasis so that you can turn to a qualified dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment.

Is it scalp psoriasis?

Symptoms of scalp psoriasis can range from mild to severe. Mild cases may only cause small patches of flaky skin, while those with more severe symptoms may experience a burning and intensely itchy scalp. If you pull back your hair you may notice scaly patches of skin and/or red bumps. It’s important not to scratch your scalp, as scratching could lead to infection and temporary hair loss.

Since scalp psoriasis shares symptoms with other conditions such as ringworm or dermatitis, you must see a dermatologist to find out what’s causing your scaly, itchy, and dry scalp.

How is scalp psoriasis treated?

While there is no cure for scalp psoriasis, a dermatologist can provide you with medications, as well as recommend certain over-the-counter products that can reduce itchy, dryness, and flaking. Shampoos or topical treatments containing coal tar or salicylic acid may help clear up symptoms.

Since psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder, an oral medication that acts on the body as a whole may offer the most effective relief. Oral medications that act on the immune system (e.g. biologics) may be recommended in more severe cases or in cases where scalp psoriasis isn’t responding to topical treatment options.

Your dermatologist may also recommend light therapy, natural remedies (e.g. tea tree oil; aloe vera), and supplements, as well as other alternative treatment options to help alleviate your symptoms.

If you are dealing with a scaly, itchy, and inflamed scalp it could be scalp psoriasis. Schedule an evaluation with a skincare professional today to learn more.
September 22, 2020
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Skin Rashes  

A skin rash that appears suddenly and spreads quickly, without other symptoms may be harmless unless other symptoms arise or the rash persists, in which case you should seek a dermatologist. The team of dermatologists at the Atlanta Center for Dermatological Diseases in Sandy Springs, Roswell, Alpharetta, and Cummings, GA, can examine your skin rash and prescribe a treatment for it.

Types of Skin Rash

  • Contact dermatitis: Common causes of contact dermatitis include oils from plants such as poison oak, poison ivy, and poison sumac. As well as causing a rash by direct contact the oil (urushiol) can be transferred from pets or gardening equipment. The rash is an allergic reaction to the oil and is not contagious. It can take several weeks to resolve. You should visit a dermatologist if your eyelids swell or if you develop an infection from scratching. You can prevent contact dermatitis by avoiding contact with the plants, wear gloves, and long pants when gardening.
  • Ringworm: This is a fungal infection that can appear anywhere on your body. The rash forms a red, scaly ring. Ringworm is treated with antifungal cream or powder. You should seek medical advice if the rash doesn’t clear up within two weeks.
  • Shingles: Shingles causes a painful rash that can appear anywhere on your body. Usually, shingles only affect one side of your body. If you suspect you may have shingles, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. The only way to reduce your risk of shingles is to have a vaccination.
  • Scabies: This is a contagious disorder caused by mites burrowing into the skin. It causes red spots and severe itching that worsens at night. If you suspect you have scabies you should seek medical advice as you will need a special lotion or cream to kill the mites.

If you are looking for a Sandy Springs dermatologist, you can call the doctors at the Atlanta Center for Dermatological Diseases at the Sandy Springs GA office at (404) 252-4333, the Alpharetta GA office at (770) 664-5225, the Cumming GA office at (770) 844-1902, or the Roswell GA office at (770) 751-1133.

By Atlanta Center for Dermatologic Diseases, PC
September 17, 2020
Category: Skin Care
Tags: Wrinkles   Reduce Wrinkles  

Everyone gets wrinkles as they grow older. As well as aging, wrinkles can also be caused or exacerbated by smoking, dehydration, sun damage, and some medications. Most often, wrinkles tend to appear on the part of the body that get the most sun exposure, such as the face, neck, backs of the hands, and tops of the forearms. There are several lifestyle changes you can make to reduce wrinkles. There are also cosmetic procedures available to reduce these signs of aging, such as those provided by the team of dermatologists at Atlanta Center for Dermatological Disease in Sandy Springs, Roswell, Alpharetta, and Cumming GA.

Protect from Sun Damage

Over 90 percent of the visible changes in the skin are caused by sun damage. If you are spending time outdoors, the best way to protect your skin is with sunscreen. When you are choosing a sunscreen, there are some important factors that you should take into consideration, such as:

  • SPF (Sunburn Protection Factor): Every sunscreen has a rating that indicates how well it protects your skin. If you’re spending time in the sun for two or more hours, your best choice is a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.
  • Broad-spectrum: A broad-spectrum sunscreen is the best choice because it will protect you against UVA and UVB rays from the sun.
  • Water resistance: Although no sunscreen is completely water-resistant, some are effective for up to 80 minutes.

Hydrate Frequently

Drinking enough water is vital for helping your liver and kidneys flush toxins from your body and keeping it young and fresh. Ideally, you should drink 6-8 glasses of water each day. Avoid substituting your glasses of water with sugar and additive-laden carbonated beverages. This is an important step for patients in Sandy Springs trying to avoid wrinkles.

Take a Vitamin Supplement

Vitamins are important for the skin to keep it looking healthy and young, particularly vitamins A, C, and E. Even when your diet is balanced and rich in vitamins from vegetables and fruit, only a percentage of these vitamins are delivered to the skin. To combat this, you may wish to supplement your skincare with lotions that are rich in certain vitamins. Vitamin A is essential for reducing the signs of age such as discolorations and wrinkles. Vitamin C helps prevent wrinkling and sagging and protects from free radicals. Vitamin B-3 increases hydration and vitamin E protects the skin from the sun’s damaging UVA rays.

Cosmetic Procedures to Reduce Wrinkles for Sandy Springs Patients

At Atlanta Center for Dermatological Disease, the following wrinkle-reducing procedures are available:

  • Facial fillers such as Juvederm and Sculptra
  • Botox
  • Sclerotherapy
  • Chemical Peels

If you’re ready to reduce your wrinkles and other signs of aging, call the Atlanta Center for Dermatological Disease's Sandy Spring office at (404) 252-4333, the Alpharetta office at (770) 664-5225, the Roswell office at (770) 751-1133, or the Cumming office at (770) 844-1902.

September 16, 2020
Category: Skin Conditions
Tags: Rashes   Ringworm  

RingwormThere are many reasons that you might be dealing with a skin rash; however, if you suspect that it might be ringworm you may be surprised to discover that there are other conditions that can often masquerade as ringworm but aren’t. This is why it’s important to have any rashes or skin problems thoroughly evaluated by a qualified dermatologist. After all, you want to make sure that you are getting the proper treatment you need depending on the type of condition you’re dealing with.

What does ringworm look like?

If you have ringworm, common symptoms include:

  • A circular or ring-like rash that may be raised along the edges
  • A rash that may be scaly, itchy, red, or burning
  • Hair loss in the area where the rash has appeared

The rash may develop several red, raised rings at once, some of which may overlap. While ringworm can develop just about anywhere on the body it’s most commonly found on the arms, legs, and trunk.

If it’s not ringworm, then what else could it be?

There are a variety of ringworm imposters that could be causing you or your child’s rash. The two most common conditions are nummular eczema and granuloma annulare.

Nummular eczema causes circular patches of dry skin that can burn or become dry and scaly. This type of skin condition is often triggered by bug bites, certain medications, or a metal allergy. Granuloma annulare causes red or flesh-colored bumps to appear on the skin, but because they often appear ring-like this condition can be mistaken for ringworm. Everything from medications and viral infections to skin trauma and thyroid disorders can trigger granuloma annulare.

Other less common symptoms that may look like ringworm include,

  • Contact dermatitis
  • Psoriasis
  • Pityriasis rosea
  • Tinea versicolor (more common in children)
  • Vitiligo
  • Erythema migrans (common in those with Lyme disease)
  • Lupus

Sometimes a skin biopsy of the lesion or rash is required for a dermatologist to be able to diagnose whether it is ringworm or not. If you are experiencing symptoms of ringworm or are concerned about a new or worsening rash, then call your dermatologist today to schedule an appointment.

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