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Acne – Diagnosis, Treatment & Result

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Acne – Diagnosis, Treatment & Result

Most of the people do not know the difference between acne and pimples. Acne is a skin disease caused due to oil entrapment inside the hair follicles of face & around area. This causes skin to puff out. In many cases, bacteria, known as p. acnes, also gets trapped inside the pore, making the condition worse.

Very importantly, one needs to understand that acne has various stages and should consult a dermatologist.

Comedonal acne – mild acne that involves blackheads and whiteheads. It forms because skin oil called sebum, along with old skin cells, block skin pores. This acne appears often on the forehead, nose, and chin.

Inflammatory acne – occurs when the area just under the the blackhead or whitehead becomes red and inflamed.

Cystic acne – severe form of acne, it develops as the result of an actual infection in the area of the outbreak. Cystic acne often runs in families. It’s often very painful and can result in permanent scarring.

There are various treatments available across, which can treat acne effectively. Although not every treatment works for everyone; but if causes, stage, and other factors are identified for an individual, a specific treatment can be applied to get rid of this disease. One should remember that no cure can remove acne overnight and it takes as minimum as 4 weeks to 8 weeks to see the results.

Treatments varies from:

  1. Topical treatments – Cure which is applied on the skin in form of Medicinal creams/ lotions. They are used over the skin (for external use) which helps in reducing oil secretion and some are used to kill bacterias from skin surface. Creams containing benzoyl peroxide/ salicylic acid are commonly prescribed by the dermatologist.
  2.  Medicines – in form of pill/ liquid which works on entire body. , mainly antibiotics to kill bacteria, reduce inflammation. It may also include Birth control pills for hormonal imbalances.
  3. Procedures – laser therapies, chemical peels etc.
  • Lasers and other light therapies: reduce the p. acnes bacteria.
  • Chemical peels:  to treat 2 types of acne — blackheads and papules.
  • Acne removal:  a procedure called “drainage and extraction” to remove a large acne cyst. This procedure helps when the cyst does not respond to medicine. It also helps ease the pain and the chance that the cyst will leave a scar. If you absolutely have to get rid of a cyst quickly, your dermatologist may inject the cyst with medicine.

Results: As already advised, one shouldn’t expect a vanishing result overnight, instead they should ensure a proper treatment, regular cleansing and certain precautions to maintain the treatment effectiveness.  Without treatment, acne can cause permanent scars, and may imbalance your confidence for social gatherings or even individually.

To avoid these possible outcomes, we recommend that people should get treated for acne. When the skin clears, treatment should continue. Treatment prevents new breakouts.

Hair Fall – Stages & Causes

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Hair Fall – Identify Stages

You may be knowing that Average adult head has about 100,000 to 150,000 hairs and it is very NORMAL to loose about 100-150 strands everyday. It is a normal cycle of follicles producing new hair cell and old feels are being pushed through the surface of the skin. It is therefore, a not to worry situation if you have new hair strays in your comb within this range throughout the day.

Hairfall1Each follicle has its own cycle which differs according to age, disease, infection, treatment, medicines, season, use of harsh cosmetics & a lot many factors. This cycle has mainly 3 stages:

Anagen: An active phase of Hair Growth

Catagen: Transitional Hair Growth

Telogen: (Resting Phase) – at the end of this phase, the hair sheds and a new hair follicle takes its place and starts all over again with 1st stage.

BUT, there is a condition called alopecia, very commonly known as Hair Fall/ Hair Loss, which goes far beyond the normal shedding of 100 strands and person may tend to loose hair from all over the scalp or from a particular area of head. They are of various types:

 

Involutional alopecia – a natural condition in which the hair gradually thins and fall with age, there is no pattern and it may trigger anytime.

Telogen effluvium – temporary hair thinning because of changes in the hair growth cycle.

Androgenic alopecia – a genetic condition that can affect both men and women. In Men, called male pattern baldness, it is identified by a receding hairline and slow disappearance of hair from crown and front scalp. In Women, this condition called female pattern baldness, experience thinning over the entire scalp.

Alopecia areata usually starts suddenly (an auto-immune disorder) and causes patchy hair loss in children and young adults. This condition may result in complete baldness (alopecia totalis).

Alopecia universalis causes all body hair to fall out, including the eyebrows, eyelashes, and pubic hair.Hair Fall

Scarring alopecias result in permanent loss of hair. Inflammatory skin conditions and disorders often destroy the ability of the hair to regenerate.

There are various factors that can trigger hair loss, out of which some are genetically induced and others are eternal factors:

Hormonal Changes – a sudden change in hormonal balance due to medication, pregnancy, age – can cause hair fall.

Genetic Pattern – Its usually seen with male that if the older male members family have a pattern of hair thinning, then later, it continues with other male members too.

Stress/ Illness – A stressed lifestyle or prolonged illness can cause hair shedding.

Drugs/ Treatment – Strong medications like for Blood pressure, birth control pills, treatments like chemotherapy etc.

Cosmetic Procedures – Harsh treatment done to hair for a long course of time, have adverse effect on their life and strength.

Medical Conditions – Suffering from Thyroid, anaemia, Iron deficiency, diabetes may all cause hair fall.

Diet – Last but not the least, a poor / imbalanced diet has detrimental effect to hair strength. One should be very careful with nutrient rich diet as it contributes with health in and out.

HAIR COLOUR HOW SAFE IS IT

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Precautions You Should Take When You Dye Your Hair
Follow these safety tips when dyeing your hair:
• Don’t leave the dye on your head any longer than needed.
• Rinse your scalp thoroughly with water after using a hair dye.
• Wear gloves when applying hair color.
• Carefully follow the directions in the hair dye package.
• Never mix different hair dye products.
• Be sure to do a patch test for allergic reactions before applying the dye to your hair. Almost all hair dye products include instructions for doing a patch test. It’s important to do this test each time you dye your hair. Make sure your hairdresser also does the patch test before dyeing your hair. To test, put a dab of dye behind your ear and don’t wash it off for two days. If you don’t have any signs of allergic reaction, such asitching, burning, or redness at the test spot, you can be somewhat sure that you won’t have a reaction to the dye when it’s applied to your hair. If you do react to the patch test, do the same test with different brands or colors until you find one to which you’re not allergic.
• Never dye your eyebrows or eyelashes. The FDA bans the use of hair dyes for eyelash and eyebrow tinting or dyeing even in beauty salons. An allergic reaction to dye could cause swelling or increase risk of infection around or in your eyes. This can harm your eyes and even cause blindness. Spilling dye into theeye by accident could also cause permanent damage.
How safe is your hair dye?
It has been used for so many centuries that it was thought to be harmless. Henna, which enhances the colour of dark hair, is one of the oldest known cosmetics. But scientists have found that a component, naturally occurring lawsone, is highly toxic.
This research comes shortly after a European Union watchdog said that some hair dyes – linked to bladder cancer and rheumatoid arthritis – were unsafe, and advised concerned consumers to stop using them.
So what are the chemicals that cause concern?
PPD (para-phenylenediamine)
This chemical is the main source of concern. It is found in dark hair dyes – concentrations of up to six per cent are legal – and is easily absorbed through the skin on the scalp and the hands. Research has shown that people who use darkcoloured permanent dyes every four to six weeks have twice the incidence of bladder cancer, which causes 4,900 deaths each year in Britain.
Advice: Use less dark dye and apply less often.
A naturally occurring chemical, found in henna at concentrations of between one and two per cent, but, none the less, one that is toxic, and can affect the kidneys, blood supply and stomach. This discovery, by the European Union’s scientific committee on cosmetic products, has raised questions about the safety of henna-based products, and may lead to some being withdrawn.
Advice: Weigh up the evidence: henna has been used for thousands of years without complaint.
Ammoniated mercury and other metallic chemicals
If a dye doesn’t contain PPD, it may well have higher concentrations of lead, mercury and other toxic metals. These have a bleaching action which enhances colour in the hair, but they can cause allergic reactions.
Advice: Read the ingredients on the packaging.
Peroxide
This breaks down the melanin in the shaft to lighten the hair. Peroxide also releases oxygen, which combines with molecules of dye to help establish colour. Can cause allergic reactions and can irritate the skin and lungs, but is not toxic.
Advice: Do a skin patch test 24 hours before first use.
Immune inhibitors
Recent Swedish studies among sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis suggested that chemicals in colouring products might damage the immune system, and even trigger the condition, though no particular chemicals were implicated.
Advice: Avoid man-made dyes.
Nonylphenol or octylphenol
Members of a group of chemicals which studies suggest are hormone disrupters and bioaccumulators. This means they can build up faster in body fat than they can be broken down.
Advice: These chemicals will not appear on the label.
Aniline dyes
Derived from coal tar and used in semi-permanent dyes. Can irritate eyes, skin and mucous membranes, or cause allergic reactions. For similar reasons, also be wary of ammonium tholactate (a neutraliser), stearic acid (an emulsifying agent), pentasodium penetate (a binding agent) and ammonium hydroxide, all found in this type of product.
Advice: Again, do a skin patch test.
Highlights or lowlights
These are the safest options. Here, the dye is painted on the length of the strand of hair, but not the scalp. It is not absorbed by the skin.

Vitiligo – Facts & Treatments you should know! – Part 2

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How Is Vitiligo Treated?

Currently, there is no medication that can eliminate existing white spots. The most that patients can do is prevent its spread, and make the spots less obvious. Also available are various treatments that may help skin look more even. The choice of treatment depends on:

•The number of white patches

•How widespread the patches are

•The treatment the person prefers to use.

Current treatment options for vitiligo include medical, surgical, and other treatments. Most treatments are aimed at restoring color to the white patches of skin.

Treatments:

Medical treatments:

•Medicines (such as creams to be applied / oral pills or liquid)

•Medicine plus ultraviolet A (UVA) light – known as PUVA

•Removing color from other areas so they subdue different appearance of white patches.

Surgical treatments:

•Skin grafts from a person’s own tissues. The doctor takes skin from one area of a patient’s body and attaches it to another area. This is sometimes used for people with small patches of vitiligo.

•Tattooing small areas of skin.

Other treatments include:

•Sunscreens

•Cosmetics, such as makeup or dye, to cover the white patches

•Counseling and support.

What Can People Do to Cope With Vitiligo?

One need to build strong self-confidence and should not let any situation, be it vitiligo, to halt them from being social, happy and healthy. Additionally, there are several things you can do to cope with the disorder such as talking to a doctor cum counsellor and knowing various facts related to it. Understand about treatments and deciding on which treatment can suit you and your budget both.  Do not hinder yourself from taking to your loved ones, family and in social gathering because more you talk, more you would feel better about yourself. A person may need to try several brands of concealing cosmetics before finding the product that works best.

Vitiligo – Facts & Treatments you should know! – Part 1

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Vitiligo – Is it spreadable / contagious?

Vitiligo, generally known as Safed Dag, is not at all a disease but a defect caused in the skin. It is due to inability of melanocytes (cells) to build melanin (which imparts color to our skin), and as a result, white patches are formed in those areas where melanocytes are dead. There have been various reasons of vitiligo’s appearance but the main reason stated is the autoimmune disorder wherein our immune system mistakenly attacks the melanocytes and cause cells’ ability to loose providing skin coloration. It can happen as a defect in the gene also.

Some people who have perfect inside out get reacted to a particular medication or allergy and may develop vitiligo. In most cases, vitiligo develops early in life, between the ages of 10 and 30 years. 95% of those affected will develop the disorder before age 40. Both men and women are equally likely to develop vitiligo. This is not life-threatening but it can be life-altering wherein people can develop low-esteem or low-social profile due to odd appearance of white patches over their body.

Symptoms

Any non-skin coloured patch appearing on any part of body can be vitiligo. It can be hands, legs, thigh, waist or face. It can also be seen around eyes, lips or even ears. There is no specificity as to where vitiligo can affect.

Is it spreadable?

There are two facets to it – it is not known whether it spreads across the body parts of a particular affected person, BUT it is NOT contagious – means it can not be spread from one person to another by physical contact. It is not a skin allergy or infection and thus is not communicable.

Causes

There are various causes stated for the appearance of vitiligo, and if you have any doubt about the same, one can approach a good dermatologist who would use a family and medical history, physical exam, and tests to diagnose vitiligo. The doctor may ask questions such as:

•Do you have family members with vitiligo?

•Do you or family members have any autoimmune diseases?

•Did you have a rash, sunburn, or other skin problem before the white patches appeared?

•Did you have some type of stress or physical illness?

•Did your hair turn gray before age 35?

•Are you sensitive to the sun?

The doctor may also recommend to do a physical exam to rule out other medical problems.This might include:

•Taking a small sample (biopsy) of the affected skin to be examined

•Blood tests

•An eye exam

We will be coming up with possible treatments and methods to treat this, to an extent, as it must be known to all that Vitiligo can’t be cured completely but can be taken care of significantly with the help of certain techniques and medical assistance. Check out this page for more!

Dark Eye Circles – Remedies to Cure – Part 2

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But in case dark circles are way beyond treatable with the simple home remedies as per previous article, one can look for options, as mentioned below, and get rid of them over a period of time.

  1. Skin lightening – with the use of Commonly applied and less-harmful bleaching agents, dark circles caused by hyperpigmentation from melasma or sun damage, can be taken care of to an extent.
  2. Intense Pulsed Light Therapy– This is used when blood vessels are visible as dark purple or blue under eye circles. Although not all doctors agree that it is safe to use IPL near the eyes.
  3. Skin resurfacing or Chemical Peels – these treatments help increasing collagen production, in-turn decreasing pigmentation, and improving overall uniform complexion of skin.
  4. Cheek lift – this can effectively and permanently correct dark circles caused by cheek descent, or drooping, a common result of facial aging.
  5. Hyaluronic acid facial fillers – these are Injectable fillers which are often used to rectify dark circles caused by skin thinning under eye or fat / tissue loss in the under eyes or upper cheeks.
  6. Fat injections – in case of severe dark shadows under eyes, fat is grafted from another body area and injected in the tear troughs to treat dark circles.
  7. Surgery for eye circles – Known as blepharoplasty, is generally the most effective way to permanently get rid of dark circles.

Do remember, any situation can be rectified but it is always recommended to first take precautions so always take a good care of yourself, eat right, take adequate sleep and stay beautiful!

Dark Eye Circles – Remedies to Cure – Part 1

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Dark Eye Circles – Don’t let them spoil your looks!

Look yourself closely in the mirror! Did you see dark circles? Having dark shadow under your eye, seems very prominent in photographs as wll?

Its certainly not a disease but a dark circle, referred as a dark shadow / discolouration just beneath the eyes, makes eyes look tired and droopy and a person appears to be ill and older.

There are many factors that can cause dark rings/ circles – counting on:

  1. Hereditary – if it runs in your family, it becomes a pattern in genes and you may suffer with dark circles without any other physical issue.
  2. Allergy – Many people are having sensitivity towards seasonal changes, and they may develop a darkish appearance under their eyes due to this.
  3. Ageing – Over time, skin keeps loosing collagen (that keeps skin tight and uplifted) and starts thinning, and thus veins under the eyes appear more prominently.
  4. Thin Skin under eyes – due to medical condition/ pregnancy/ hormonal changes
  5. Over exposure in sun – Sun also facilitates collagen breakdown, causing dark shadows under the eyes, where skin is more sensitive as compared to other areas.
  6. Sagging skin under eyes – skin may sag like a pouchy hammock like puff under eyes, due to sun exposure or ageing, as it tends to loose collagen and elastin – proteins which keep skin intact.
  7. Puffiness – water retention also cause eyes to develop shadow around. Too much salt intake can also affect.
  8. Fat Loss – A person who lose considerable weight in a short span of time, due to illness or dieting or any other substantial reason, may also develop dark circles.
  9. Lifestyle – Over the top Alcohol consumption, deprived sleep, mental exhaustion, too much computer usage, and poor diet regime all can contribute towards a persons deteriorating health and its first sign can appear as dark shadows under eyes.
  10. Medical Factors – Any reaction to a particular medication, nasal congestion, high fever etc. can bring their sudden appearance.

Why do we need to know the above causes? Its because once you know the reason behind, the rectification can be done accordingly, as you need not to undergo medication/ chemical treatment every time. You may either require a simple eye care regime to get rid of dark eyes which would be very different from undergoing medical treatment if it is due to collagen breakdown or if its an allergy.

There are various popular home remedies with which dark circles can be taken care of to an extent. They can make eyes look fresh from everyday stress and can get you a clearer complexion all over.

  1. Cold Compress – Keep ice pack over eyes every evening after a stressful day/ work to get muscles and veins relaxed. You can use chilled cucumber slices or aloe vera gel also.
  2. Pack – mix of rose water, sandalwood and multani mitti also helps improve skin color around eyes.
  3. Under-eye skin cream – they help in building collagen and help removing dark shadows.
  4. For instant camouflaging – one can use concealer / foundation to hide circles for an immediate cover.
  5. Proper sleep – a good routined sleep is must for having a beautiful health and definitely no eye dark circles.
  6. Completely avoid alcohol (as it cause dehydration and ultimately roughening skin), avoid exposure to sun and constant working over computer screen.
  7. Consume adequate amount of water. Its an excellent beverage to keep yourself hydrated and fresh throughout the day.
  8. Cover your face from exposing to smoke and dust while moving out.
  9. Always remove make-up (if any) from face before going to bed. This is very important as chemicals in cosmetics may further harm your face skin overall.
  10. Healthy diet – A good balanced diet including fresh fruits/ vegetables, pulses and whole grain helps body to maintain blood flow, keeping immunity high and protecting you from any seasonal allergies.

But in case dark circles are way beyond treatable with these simple remedies, there are various treatments available, that can help you get rid of these undesired shadows. Stay tuned for more!

 

Non-Surgical Spot Fat Reduction – For Newer Generation!

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Non-Surgical Spot Fat Reduction

Your figure reflects a lot about you. A lean frame is a boon but for many people, mainly obese or chronic obese, getting rid of excess fat seems to be a battle un-won. Although a regime including balanced Diet and regular exercise can help but there are always some peculiar areas that just don’t seem to respond. Fatty deposits on the following have been the most difficult areas to work upon:

  1. cheeks
  2. chin
  3. jaw line
  4. love handles
  5. hips
  6. under the arms
  7. abdomen
  8. thigh

Fat cells are by nature very different than other cells and their response to various techniques applied. Today, new technologies introduced for fat removal have been developed based on this knowledge and, as a result, can target specific areas of body fat. In this line, the introduction of non-invasive fat removal technologies is opening the door for people to remove stubborn fat, safely and effectively.

There are positives about Non Surgical Spot Fat Reduction Procedures :

  • It is a painless walk in and walk out procedure.
  • No down time, patients can resume their regular activities immediately.
  • No serious side effects.
  • No anesthesia.
  • No Scars.
  • Safe.
  • No Complications or Health Risk.

Which are the two most popular techniques?

  • Radiofrequency:

Procedure: Being one of the latest spot fat reduction technologies, Radiofrequency is widely used by dermatologists with much success for people with zones of excess fat.

Its a versatile procedure that can be used on area of the body, independent of size, so whether its the abdomen or chin, this is equally effective. It penetrates with controlled heat into the fat cells, which in turn commences the breakdown and removal of intra cellular waste and unwanted fat from specific and treated areas of the body.

Another benefit of radiofrequency is that it has the ability to both reduce fat and tighten the skin by directing energy to target collagen. The treatment usually takes 15 to 60 minutes. The procedures will work without diet or exercise, but you can greatly enhance results by following diet and exercising. Also, water is extremely important to aid the body in fat elimination post this treatment.

After effects: Patients may experience mild redness which disappears on its own and also a mild improvement in their skin tone and smoothness, with the reduced appearance of fat and possible inch loss along.

  • PPC (PhosPhatidylCholine) Injections:

Procedure: PPC injection (Phosphatidylcholine, deoxycholic acid & benzylalcohol), with the help of very thin needles, is injected into under layer fatty tissue. This weakens the cell membrane of fat cells leading to their rupture & release of certain enzymes. These enzymes in turn, further breaks down the fat into fatty acids which are carried by the blood to the liver & finally discarded by the body. It is most effective on small localized region of stubborn fat deposits.

A total of 3-4 sessions at 3-4weekly interval  is generally required for desirable results. The skin over the treated areas tightens after the fat has been removed (subjective – providing there is no excess loose skin) and the appearance of cellulite reduces. The fat cells are permanently removed and the results can be maintained for much longer time after treatment if client maintains their ideal body weight.

After effects: Patients may feel localized burning sensation while injecting, may suffer pain, tenderness, bruising and swelling, but are temporary.

Caution !!

These treatments are medical procedure & should be performed only by a trained physician. Although are safe, but these should not be done to clients below 18years of age, in Pregnancy & breast feeding, high blood pressure or if suffering from any serious illness.

Laser Hair Treatment

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Laser Hair Removal

Laser Hair removal (LHR) has become a wide known treatment for removal of unwanted hair. Broadly for cosmetic purposes, people have used this technique to get rid of unwanted hair to enhance their looks or removal of hair growth due to hormonal imbalances, medication side effects or any other physical disorder.

What is it?

Laser Hair Removal technique involves highly concentrated light which is beamed into hair follicles, area which controls the hair growth and strength on the surface. There are pigment present in the follicles which absorb the light, causing a reaction which results in future growth inhibition of hair from that particular spot.

The treatment has gained a lot of popularity because of its ease to do and availability across. The cost of the treatment is high, though varies, but is still affordable by a large mass.

Advantages of LHR

1. Precision – Using lasers, one can can selectively target dark, coarse hair while leaving the surrounding skin undamaged.

2. Time effective – Each pulse of the laser takes less than a second to hit one follicle and can treat many hairs at the same time.

3. Result Oriented – Most patients have satisfactory hair loss after an average of 3 to 7 sessions.

How to prepare for the LHR session?

  • First and foremost, choose a doctor who’s board certified in a specialty such as dermatology or cosmetic surgery and has prior experience with laser hair removal.
  • Completely avoid spas, salons or other facilities that allow a non-medical personnel to do laser hair removal, even if they have handled number of cases.
  • Limit plucking, waxing, and electrolysis for at least 6 weeks before starting with first session, as these treatments can temporarily remove the hair roots which are required for the laser to target at, for hair removal.
  • Avoid sun exposure for at least 6 weeks before as well as after treatment. Sun exposure seen to have negative impact on the treatment.
  • Rest, take a full consultation from the Team performing treatment, to understand each and every detail, pros and cons, side effects and any other detail you may require before starting with sessions with them.

Common treatment locations include legs, underarms, upper lip, chin and bikini line. However, it’s possible to treat unwanted hair in nearly any area — except the eyelid or surrounding area – one should be extra careful while taking treatment for upper lids or areas near eye, due to high risk of laser interaction with eye retina and it may damage your sight.

Effectiveness of LHR

Interestingly, laser works on the concept of ‘Contrast’. Therefore, it would be more effective for people who have light skin and dark hair because the laser beam targets the pigment (melanin) in the hair. However, now advances in technology have made laser hair removal an option for people who have darker skin.

Care after the procedure

One may find discomfort in the treated area after the session, noticing redness and swelling for the first few hours after laser hair removal, is quite common.

One can apply ice to the targeted area to reduce this discomfort. You may also be prescribed with a steroid cream if you have a skin reaction immediately after laser hair removal.

Important to note – After laser hair removal, avoid sun exposure. Try to keep the area covered and use umbrella if going out is a necessity. Once, your skin has healed, keep using effective sunscreen whenever you’re stepping out in the sun.