My Skin Journey Update #4 – My Date with a Dermatologist

Several years ago I never imagined I’d need to consider seeing a specialist for my skin. Growing up, I had the usual hormonal breakouts but now, I’m stumped…

This is going to be a fairly long read of my trials and tribulations, so grab a drink or a snack. You’ve been warned!Snack

If you’ve been following since about 5 months ago I created my, ‘My Skin Journey’ series. If you want to read all of them before this one, then they’reย hereย hereย here and here.

The beginning

At the beginning of 2018, I decided to revamp my less than impressive skincare routine. I must sheepishly admit that my ‘routine’ consisted of washing my face with bar soap in the morning, moisturising before makeup, then a makeup wipe and/or micellar water to remove makeup in the evening and another hose down with soap.

I hardly used moisturiser in the evening, unless I noticed my face got itchy and I could visibly see dry patches which I’ve always been prone to. The only thing I’d never do is go to sleep with a face full of makeup, so I’m proud of that at least.

With the information I had found and the excitement of starting a new online business, I was certain that my new found skincare routine was going to turn my skin around 180ยฐ as it did for many others. Spoiler alert, it didn’t.

I had purchased fragrance free cleansers, moisturiser’s and sunscreens and omitted makeup from my daily routine all for the sake of letting my skin heal, release toxins and breathe.

Yes, my skin did improve slightly, yours will too with these changes. But mostly I noticed it stayed much the same and I must be dealing with something else I couldn’t control.

The battle

I became desperate in a bid to clear myself of flushed skin, dryness and this cluster of comedonal bumps all over my forehead, cheeks and chin.

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The more I tried, the more it worsened. I couldn’t get rid of this texture. I sifted through old pictures of myself and couldn’t see the same texture I had developed now. Or could I?

I was driving myself crazy.

Perhaps now looking back, my skin was used to the old bar soap and no actual routine method of ‘skincare’ approach. A case of too much too fast?

Initial GP visit

In September 2018, I visited my GP in the hope of a cure. I will briefly explain what happened in those few months.

  • I was first prescribed Doxycycline 50mg for 2 months
  • I was switched to a different BC pill, Yasmin
  • When none of that worked I was prescribed DUAC and sent home with a referral to a Dermatologist

We left off with my GP prescribing me a hefty $50.00 cream Duac, that contains Benzoyl Peroxide + Clindamycin. I used it for a few days.

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Benzoyl Peroxide can be a fabulous ingredient that helps with various skin conditions however it is super drying and irritating to the skin. I have used Benzac, a face wash available in Australia at Chemist Warehouse and Priceline stores. I can’t remember the effect it had on my skin except the peeling.

Clindamycin is another great topical ingredient I used many a year ago in high school on large pimples. It worked great for me.

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Result: My skin got even worse using this cream. I experienced red, dry and irritated skin accompanied by stinging skin when applying my moisturiser. I admit, I probably used this too often, too quickly. Iย discontinued use.

When to see a Dermatologist?

I attempted to remedy my skin issues for 9 months. Then with the help of my GP for about 3 months.

I wholeheartedly understand my skin issues aren’t major. There are plenty of others in a far worse condition than myself. If you do suffer with pain and/or unusual or severe symptoms then I urge you to see a medical professional ASAP.

Do not wait around trying to fix things yourself.

Here is a helpful site you can use to research Dermatologists in your area before speaking with your GP,ย The Australasian College of Dermatologists.

Home

Recent Pics as of February 2019

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3 month comparison

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I woreย makeup, wore sunscreen and a hat, I washed my face with bar soap and cleanser, I moisturised a lot and I tried to not stare at my skin in the mirror too often. When my face got itchy, I usedย  a steroid cream Advantan which was initially prescribed to me in 2016.

All the fun stuff

Waiting

I waited a little under 3 months to get an appointment. This may vary between areas, states and countries. I’ve heard people waiting 6 months + to see a Derm.

Bring with you to the appointment

Your medicare card, referral, money and yourself.

Also, I thought it’d be handy to have a collection of pictures to show her of my skin in the past year. On a notepad, I jotted down a timeline of past skin problems I’d encountered in my life along with a family history on skin diseases etc. It’s easy to forget things in the moment, so this helped.

Cost

It’s not cheap, I paid $250 for my first consultation/visit and received a $73 medicare rebate. In total, $177. I had 3 months to save, which is a plus for the waiting period.

What happens when you get there?

I filled out a form with all my details and was told my referral was valid for 12 months.

How long does my appointment last with the Doc?

It’s important to remember that specialists specialise in an area of their chosen medical field. Unfortunately they don’t have hours to spend with you as there are many other patients waiting to see them as well, hence the long waiting times for a consultation.

My appointment lasted about 20-25 minutes. Others were seen in just 15 minutes.

My experience and some answers.

I was told I have good skin, no acne at present (however I did last year in the photos I showed previously). I also have mild Seborrehoeic Dermatitis, mild Eczema and mild Rosacea.

I feel peace of mind going forth with this information and I will be posting my routine soon enough when I have the time to let the routine settle including all the Derm’s scripts and recommendations.

Wish me luck as this journey continues to hydrated skin and I hope you didn’t find this lengthy read too boring!!

Have you ever seen a Derm for skin issues or consider seeing one? Let me know your experiences below. I’d love to discuss.

Remember to love your health.

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DMP Definitions – Emollient

Suffering with dry skin? Has the sun and wind made your skin look like Queen Elsa’s been around you? Or perhaps more seriously, do you suffer with Dermatitis or any other skin condition? Keep reading.

Essentially emollients work as a deep moisturising agents for the skin working to soften the skin cells at a molecular level. You can get them in moisturisers, creams, lotions and ointments and can be applied topically to any part of your skin. This can be particularly helpful for people who suffer with Dermatitis, Psoriasis, Eczema, Allergic Contact Dermatitis and dry skin in general.

You can get almost instant relief as the emollients work to lock in hydration and trap moisture into any part of your skin. This slows down the rate at which you lose moisture and keeps skin plump and hydrated.

My favourite emollient is Vaseline or petroleum jelly and I have family members who moisturise with Vaseline and that alone although I do not recommend this. It would be more beneficial to add moisturiser then an emollient to the skin or better yet, find an emollient moisturising cream and slather that all over your self.

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A great moisturiser recommendation (and a popular one at that) is CeraVe an all over body moisturiser and it can even be applied safely to the face. This is widely available but if you can’t find it in shops, do check out iHerb.com as they stock it and ship at reasonable prices. Another is any of Neutrogena’s Oil-Free Moisture moisturisers.

I hope you’ve found this post somewhat informative and above all else, I hope you find some relief in dry and itchy skin problems.

Remember to love your health!

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Disclaimer: I am not a Doctor, Dermatologist, Beauty Therapist, or Aesthetician, I just love skincare and health and love sharing what I learn with you. Always speak to your healthcare professional when unsure. None of the information provided is substitute for an actual consultation with your healthcare professional.

 

Eczema Relief

Firstly, please see your doctor as I am not a Doctor,ย Dermatologist, Beauty Therapist, or Esthetician. Furthermore discuss any new products you’re interested in introducing into your skin care routine with your doctor or doctors before commencing.

Now I suffer with somewhat mild Eczema and it is no where near as bad as it could be. Nonetheless it does upset me and create a lot of symptoms I’d rather not experience. It can be at times embarrassing and awkward and for those who experience more outwardly obvious symptoms it can really take a toll on your mental health and you can feel very self conscious. It’s important to talk about these conditions because it should not be a taboo subject.ย Today, my 3 product recommendations for soothing Eczema.

Please note though some products may not be available in your country.

  1. MooGoo Eczema & Psoriasis Cream 120g/4.2 fl oz.

I want to talk a little more on the brand MooGoo. It is an Australian owned company that make skin care products with all natural ingredients and is eco-friendly. They sell not only skin care products but also range from baby products, cleansers, serums and oils and moisturisers. Be sure to check out their range and stockists here:

https://moogoo.com.au/

I became aware of this brand a little over a year ago now when 2 of my family members were going through cancer treatment. MooGoo products are put together in care packages here in Australian hospitals for cancer patients. When patients are receiving radiation therapy or chemotherapy their skin dries out immensely as a side effect of that treatment. They are therefore encouraged to apply some of their products to effectively soothe and rehydrate the skin. I believe the product they supply is called Natural Skin Milk Udder Cream.

In the middle of Winter my skin was crying out for moisture as I had very much neglected my skin. I found their creams for Eczema and Psoriasis at a Pharmacy. I have used this on my face and body and it really does help to replenish the skin.ย Benefits are anti inflammatory, anti fungal and wound healing properties as it helps relieve symptoms of Eczema,ย  Seborrheic Dermatitis and Psoriasis.

The scent is not too bad either and their play on words is so cute (I love cows and cow anything) you’ll find they do this a lot across their product lists.

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Some bonus products I use, Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture for face, Lucas’ PawPaw Ointment for conditioning those lips

2.Vaseline Intensive Care Deep Restore 225ml & Petroleum Jelly

For overall moisturizing my entire body (minus my face) and I apply the petroleum jelly over the top of any dry patches that need an extra boost of locking in moisture power. I have a video on moisturizers and emollients that gets more in depth with what they are and how to use them in your routine. I find that together these ingredients help to quickly soothe and alleviate any dry, cracked skin. As this is a deep restore moisturizer, I find it makes my skin softer in just one use. The trick is to keep using it consistently! Non greasy formulation is fast absorbing which is a plus or maybe my hands are so dry they just suck it all up instantly!

3. Advantan 1% & Novasone 0.1% – Steroid Cream

Both this cream and lotion require a prescription but do know they offer extraordinary relief to itching, redness, dryness, oozing and flakiness. I won’t go too much into this because lets face it, I wouldn’t know what I’m talking about. All I can say is that these work for me and your Doctor will consider all factors for prescribing you medicine based on your health, any allergies and any other form of medication you are taking to reduce likelihood of harmful drug interactions.

That’s it! I hope you found this list of products I use helpful and may even give you the confidence to go out there and seek help. Some skin conditions can be embarrassing but I’m here to tell you they shouldn’t be. Remember to love your health!

Dee X

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An Embarrassing Skin Condition?

I scratched and scratched. I was only about 9 or 10 when I started to develop a white patch on my leg.

So my mother took me to our Doctor and I was told I had Eczema. I’ve honestly forgotten how I treated it but I’m sure I was prescribed a cream for it. It’s been 18 years and my memory is a little foggy if you can forgive.

It’s completely disappeared and I never get it reoccur again however I have developed it in other places that flare up with the weather and other variables in my life.

Apologies for the TMI for some of this post.

Here’s the video if you’d prefer to watch but continue reading by all means ๐Ÿ™‚

First would be on my ear, I develop a deep red patch of skin that is thick, sore and often bleeds. It leads me to apply copious amounts of moisturizer and applying a band aid to help me sleep albeit it’s a very difficult position to put a band aid in!

Another is my itchy inner ears, the canals. They flare up and itch like crazy and I mean I could scratch and scratch and scratch for 10 minutes and it still gives no relief. Believe you me I have scratched for that long and my ear began weeping and eventually crusts over.

I develop dry, sensitive, itchy patches on my skin that look like tiny red bumps all over my cheeks, chin and sometimes forehead. I believe this is due to getting too dehydrated and the weather contributes.

My scalp towards my forehead gets very dry and flaky along with my eyebrows and I find myself scraping the flakes out daily unless I stick to my routine.

I also worked in a position that had me constantly washing my hands for hygiene and I can tell you my hands were so dry, cracked, split and bleeding I could stand to have anything touch them. They were hot, angry and swelled. Anything I applied stung and I was told I had contact dermatitis from all the washing and soap irritating and stripping my skin not to mention the hand sanitizer I used.

I am by no means trying to make my symptoms sound terrible, they are annoying at most and I can keep it under control for the most part.

I aim to make a video on the products I use for Eczema/Dermatitis in future so stay tuned ๐Ÿ™‚

Disclaimer: I am not a Doctor, Dermatologist, Beauty Therapist, or Esthetician, I just love skincare and health and love sharing what I learn with you. Seek medical attention when unsure.

Remember to love your health!

Dee X