What you need to know about dermatologists
Dermatology is a medical specialism that covers issues with the skin (and more loosely the hair and nails), naturally making dermatologists the best professionals to see about skin, hair, and nail conditions. There are many conditions relating to those three areas of the body, including common problems like eczema, psoriasis, and vitiligo, as well as more serious concerns like skin cancer. While dermatologists may specialise in one or more of these specific areas, you can also find generalists who are able to help you understand and diagnose the root of your particular issues.
When you attend an initial appointment with a dermatologist, their first course of action will usually involve asking you questions about your condition, assessing the problem areas first hand, and looking up your medical history. The dermatologist will collate this information and, using their knowledge, aim to reach a conclusion as to what your condition is.
The conclusion of an appointment might see the dermatologist provide you with tailored skin, hair, or nailcare advice, refer you to a specialist in a certain sub-section of the discipline, or provide you with a diagnosis which enables you to seek a prescription. Alternatively, if they can’t get to the bottom of the problem during your appointment, they might arrange a biopsy – a procedure that involves the removal of a small patch of skin for further testing.
Reasons to visit a dermatologist for the first time include experiencing general skin problems like itchiness or redness, new unusual marks appearing on your skin, and the appearance of rashes. However, people with genetic skin conditions might have regular visits to a dermatologist, and there are other, more cosmetic, reasons to go, including to tackle signs of aging or thinning hair.
When you’re searching "dermatologists near me", things to look out for include particular specialisms in certain conditions or areas of the body, what their costs are, and how well their service is reviewed. My Health Assistant helps you to search through some of the best dermatologists near you, making it easier than ever to find a professional who suits your needs.