Summertime Skin Culprits

When the weather heats up, keep an eye out for these common Summertime skin woes!
woman on beach sun hat
Summer is officially here and with it brings more time spent outdoors and an increase in common summertime skin conditions.  To help ensure your skin’s healthy glow year round, tailor your skin care regimen to fit the climate.  While you may not need to wear as thick of a moisturizer in July as you would in January, daily sunscreen is a must.  Sand and salt water do provide exfoliation, but also remember to cleanse the skin properly after indulging in some quality beach time to avoid clogged pores or irritation.  While you are working on your daily regimen, take watch for these common Summertime skin culprits as well:
Tinea Versicolor: This is a common skin condition caused by a fungal infection which presents itself as uneven skin pigmentation on areas such as the chest, shoulders or upper back.  Associated with excessive perspiration, it’s no wonder this condition is more prevalent in Summer months.  Changes in pigmentation can be pink or coppery-brown spots in fair skin individuals, or a lightening of the skin for those of darker skin tones.  A simple scraping of the cells examined under a microscope can confirm this diagnosis, which can be treated by topical anti-fungal medications, prescribed by a physician.

Margarita Dermatitis: The technical term is Phytophotodermatitis which occurs when a specific plant compound comes in contact with the skin, causing the area to become sensitive to the sun. In the Summer months Limes are often to blame for this reaction, but it can also be caused by celery, parsley and bergamot. This condition can be treated with topical ointment so it’s best to contact your dermatologist if symptoms start to appear.  Enjoy your margaritas pool or beach side, just be sure to wash your hands promptly after handling the limes!

Insect Bites: Being outdoors can be great fun, however it can also bring you in contact with a wider array of insects.  A few tips for dealing with the creepy, crawly, flying friends are to check your body for ticks after a day out hiking or kayaking, carry bug repellents with you to ward off mosquitoes, gnats and ticks.  An over the counter hydro-cortisone cream can help with minor itching, however try to avoid scratching or further irritating the area.  Watch for anything out of the ordinary such as an increase in swelling or redness and consult a doctor if you see these signs.

Sunburn: As much as we try to encourage prevention, Sunburn unfortunately does happen. What’s the best way to treat a sunburn? AVOID GETTING ONE! (You knew we were going to say that, didn’t you?) If you do end up with a sunburn, though, you can ease the pain with a cool bath or shower and apply moisturizer.  There’s a good number of old wives tales out there such as a vinegar or tea bath, but these do not have scientifically proven results attached to them.  Your best bet is to abide, as best as you can, to sun safety precautions to avoid over-exposure.

Rising temperatures can also trigger and aggravate many other skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, eczema, and psoriasis.  Tailoring your skin care regimen can help adjust to these changes in temperatures and we often suggest keeping a diary to track any specific changes or triggers that may arise during the Summer months.

If you have any questions about the conditions listed above or notice your skin is changing during warmer temperatures, please do not hesitate sending us an email to set up an appointment or giving us a call at (843) 556-8886.  Both of our Board Certified Dermatologists are happy to answer any questions or address any concerns you may have.  Remember – We want you to enjoy your Summertime and any time spent outdoors, just enjoy it the safe way!

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2180 Henry Tecklenburg Dr.
Charleston, SC 29414

1364 Ashley River Road
Charleston, SC 29407

Phone: 843-556-8886
Fax: 843-556-8850

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