By Hannah Howard, M.D., Utica Park Clinic Dermatologist
Our skin is our largest organ, protecting everything inside our bodies. It is the body’s first line of defense against things like bacteria or viruses, extremes in temperature and other harmful substances. It’s important to keep our skin healthy so it can do its job!
Good skin care habits and a healthy lifestyle will keep this important part of your body healthy and looking great.
Skin Care Basics
Prevention today is much easier than treating skin issues down the road. Daily application of a broad-spectrum sunscreen that is at least SPF 30 is very important - even on cloudy days or days that you will just be driving in the car. Regular sunscreen application can help reduce premature aging of the skin and skin cancer.
If you ever have any skin-related concerns, see a board-certified dermatologist. I ask my patients to let me know of any moles changing in size, shape or color; of any bleeding or non-healing spots; or of any other changes to their skin. Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States. Studies show that one out of five Americans will develop it at some point in their lifetime.
Exposure to factors such as sunlight and cigarette smoke can damage your skin. Sun exposure can cause wrinkles, age spots and other skin issues. More time spent in the sun also increases your risk for skin cancer. Smoking can also add wrinkles and make you appear older than you are. It can damage the collagen and elastin in your skin, which are the fibers responsible for skin’s strength and elasticity.
Stress can also have a detrimental effect on many skin conditions. It can make skin more sensitive and trigger acne breakouts and other issues.
Tips for a Healthy Glow
• Always wear sunscreen when outside.
• Wear protective clothing.
• Minimize time spent in the sun especially between the hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m..
• Quit smoking.
• Find a fun, de-stressing activity.
• Use a mild, fragrance-free soap.
• Moisturize dry skin. In general, creams or ointments work better than lotions.
• Eat a healthy diet.
• Get enough sleep.
• Stay hydrated.
Dr. Howard has two office locations. To make an appointment with her in Owasso, call 918-212-7373. To make an appointment with her or another Utica Park Clinic dermatologist at 9245 S. Mingo Rd. in Tulsa, call 918-492-8980 or request an appointment online at https://uticaparkclinic.com/contact-us.