For diagnosis and treatment of both deadly and less dangerous disorders associated with the skin, hair and nail mucous membranes, you need to see a dermatologist. They are trained to handle over 3,000 skin conditions. These include skin cancer, psoriasis, acne, moles, melanomas and other skin tumours.
They also manage inflammatory skin disorders, identify symptoms of infectious skin diseases, interpret skin examinations and, lastly, carry out whatever procedures that may be required. Under dermatology, one can choose to specialize in a particular skin ailment, hence the different types of dermatologists.
Depending on your situation, you can consult any of the following types of dermatologists:
1. Pediatric Dermatologists
In most cases, young children tend to be highly susceptible to skin diseases compared to older people due to their weak immune system. They also react differently to certain foods, medication and treatment. So, as their guardian, you have to be on your toes. This just goes to show the essence of having physicians specially trained to work with children having skin diseases.
As soon as you see a mark or any symptom that points to a skin disorder, seek the help of a pediatric dermatologist. A pediatric dermatologist can treat congenital skin disorders, hives, acne, birthmarks, warts, allergic reactions, e.g. dermatitis and diaper rash. Usually, pediatric dermatologists can be found at clinics or daycare centres.
A dermatopathologist specializes in the study of the skin, a process involving the use of microscopy techniques to study and analyze certain tissue sections, skin cells and parts of the skin that have been damaged by a skin disease. They work alongside other dermatologists.
Owing to the nature of their work, they can usually be seen working in laboratories. Other physicians use their research findings to treat skin diseases. Besides, these types of dermatologists also double up as surgical dermatologists since they have an in-depth understanding of skin conditions.
3. Surgical Dermatologists
Also known as procedural dermatologists, they are usually called in when recommended medications fail to treat a skin condition. In such cases, surgical techniques (both invasive and non-invasive) are the only option available. They are somewhat similar to cosmetic dermatologists who carry out procedures such as facelifts and restructuring of the hairline, but they are not limited to cosmetic-related procedures.
These types of dermatologists are also licensed and well equipped to carry out procedures such as the excision of lesions, Mohs surgery, which aims to get rid of cancerous cells, skin grafts and flaps, among others.
4. Cosmetic Dermatologists
When you hear the word ‘cosmetic,’ think aesthetics. It has to do with how good and healthy your skin looks. Who doesn’t crave for a glowing, youthful-looking complexion? Cosmetic dermatologists seek to correct or conceal skin flaws such as blemishes, unwanted scars, wrinkles and sagging skin that comes with age.
These types of dermatologists also remove hair using laser technology, do facial peels, apply acne and face tightening procedures (such as facelifts), micro-needling, among other procedures. More often than not, these dermatologists perform minimally invasive procedures and are considered the most visible in the field of medicine.
These are medical practitioners who examine the link between the skin and one’s immune system. They identify skin conditions connected to the immune system. These include contact dermatitis and eczema. They conduct experiments regularly to observe and assess how the skin and immune system behave when exposed to different substances.
Through these experiments, they can develop viable treatments for skin diseases that are related to the immune system. Immunodermatologists may work in remote laboratories that are far removed from the public eye, but they nonetheless end up making a huge impact when it comes to saving lives. Talk of unsung heroes and heroines!
As with other professions that have jumped onto the digital bandwagon, dermatology has equally embraced the use of modern technology to enhance services. Teledermatology, which uses telecommunication tools to exchange medical information in audio or audiovisual formats, is rapidly gaining traction.
The beauty of teledermatology is that it allows the dermatologists to examine skin diseases over long distances, in real-time, through the internet. If you have family or work commitments that take up most of your time, teledermatology is an excellent option to consider. Teledermatologists are, however, primarily consulted for a second opinion on a range of skin conditions. They do not conduct initial diagnoses; so, you will still have to make time for a physical visit to a clinic.
Your skin is by far the largest organ in the body and the first line of defence against diseases. It, therefore, makes sense to start taking good care of it. However, there is hope if you already have a nagging skin condition. You can visit any of the above types of skin doctors (dermatologists) that are willing to treat you using an array of treatment options. With the right treatment, you can soon spot a beautiful, youthful-looking skin.