10 Skincare Lessons We Learnt From Dermatologist Dr Fehmida Arif

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Acne, scars, blemishes, wrinkles – the list of our skin problems is never-ending, in fact, it only increases with age. When it comes to skincare, people take all sorts of measures — try totkas their grandmothers swear by, apply a ton of products and spend hours researching the perfect remedies on the internet. But when nothing seems to do the job they turn to the pros — dermatologists. Since we’ve been following you closely and know you have numerous skin concerns, we reached out to consultant dermatologist and laser specialist Dr Fehmida Arif to have all your queries answered. Missed the Q&A session? We got you! Scroll down to browse through all that we learned from her.

Laser > Electrolysis For Facial Hair

Facial hair can be a source of insecurity for some as there’s no way to hide it, besides getting it removed or treated. To get rid of unwanted hair, a number of methods are widely used such as waxing, threading and shaving. But for a more long-term solution women opt for either laser or electrolysis. Both procedures remove hair by targeting hair follicles under the skin’s surface. While laser removes hair by exposing laser lights into hair follicles, electrolysis involves inserting a probe into the hair follicle and sending an electric current through it. Which one is the better option? According to Dr Fehmida, it’s laser hair removal. She says, “I would advise laser for facial hair, because it’s a renowned technology. It is safe, effective and leaves your skin hair-free for longer.”

Cure For Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a common skin condition that speeds up the life cycle of skin cells and multiplies them up to 10 times. It causes skin to develop red bumpy patches, which can be itchy and painful. Even though it’s a chronic disease, our expert says, it can be treated with the right medication. “Psoriasis tends to relapse. Various new medicines and injections are available, which you can use to treat it and have long-lasting remission,” says Dr Fehmida.

Ultimate Skincare Routine For Teenagers

Skin complications can start from your teenage years. Oily skin, acne and blackheads top the list of teen skin complaints, since the hormonal surges may cause oily glands to enlarge. At this phase, one should stick to a basic skincare routine and avoid using harsh chemical-based products. Dr Fehmida says, “An ideal skincare routine for teenagers should include proper face wash, according to your skin type. Other than that, cleansing is also important as teenagers are usually involved in outdoor activities such as sports.”

Laser For Acne Scars

Pimples may be temporary but the scars they leave behind haunt us for weeks (or even months). Some acne can be treated with topical solutions such as exfoliation or scar-fading spot treatments. However, scars that form below the upper layer of the skin can be difficult to get rid of, as it disables skin from regenerating tissues normally. For those acne scars our expert recommends laser treatments. She says, “Try a laser treatment. There are many lasers available for acne scars and the results are extremely effective. However, be careful because laser can sometimes worsen the condition for someone suffering from extreme acne.”

Getting Rid Of Dark Circles

Be it long-haul flights, an irregular sleep schedule or natural factors such as genetics and aging — dark circles happen to the best of us. There are many home remedies that claim to get rid of dark circles in days. But do they really work? Unfortunately, for most people home remedies alone are not enough. For a more effective and permanent solution, Dr Fehmida suggests: “applying certain eye creams, opting for Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) or certain kinds of laser, or for more severe cases — fillers.

Right Age To Use Retinol

Retinol – the magical skincare product that’s highly regarded by dermatologists worldwide. Retinol is a form of vitamin A, which aims to prevent signs of aging. It helps neutralise free radicals, stimulates collagen production and accelerates skin turnover, which in turn blurs blemishes and softens fine lines and wrinkles. But before you run over to buy all the retinol in town, Dr Fehmida, emphasises the importance of using retinol when it’s age-appropriate. “Use retinols after a certain age, like 35 or 40. We recommend this to protect and prevent your skin from developing pigmentation and fine wrinkles.”

Keloid Can’t Be Cured

Keloids are raised scars that grow above and much larger than the injury on the skin. They are shaped irregularly and unlike other scars, they do not get smaller or heal with time. As the scars grow, they can get itchy and painful. Its symptoms, like pain and itchiness, can be reduced with treatment, but the scars cannot be eliminated. “Keloids is an abnormal reaction of our skin to any kind of injury. Unfortunately, there’s no permanent cure for it. You can choose to treat it or let it be,” says our expert.

For Extreme Dryness Moisturizing Isn’t Enough

Extreme dryness is a result of dehydration. Therefore the first thing you should do is make sure you are drinking enough water. The recommended amount is 8-10 glasses of water daily. A good moisturizing regime is also very important. You should be moisturizing your skin twice daily, morning and night. If you are still battling dryness, then Hydromax, an IV therapy which rebalances your body with electrolytes and antioxidants can help. It is available at Reviv, Karachi.

Ideal Moisturiser For Oily Skin

Most people with oily skin tend to skip moisturising, assuming it’s not necessary or will make their skin even greasier. But let us be the first to tell you – that’s a huge misconception. Moisturisers are as important for oily skin as they are for dry or any other skin type. However, picking the right moisturiser is key. Dr Fehmida says, those with oily skin should opt for water-based moisturisers, especially in the summer.

Accutane Is Safe For Acne

Accutane is a medication used to treat severe cystic acne. Those who suffer from severe acne and do not benefit from any other medication or treatment are ideal candidates for Accutane. It lessens the oil production by reducing the size of the oil glands. This slows down the growth of bacteria, reduces inflammations and as a result, stops acne. However, it does have serious side effects such as tiredness, cracked lips, dryness, headaches and even depression. Our expert ensures that Accutane is safe, but stresses that dermatologists must conduct the appropriate blood tests before prescribing it.

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