A question we commonly get, especially from parents and young people, is what age they or their children should start regularly seeing a dermatologist. Our answer depends on whether or not there are problematic skin conditions, and family history plays a role too. Generally speaking, here’s when you should start regularly seeing a dermatologist.
It’s a great position to be in if your skin is clear and free from any troubling skin conditions! That said, it’s a good idea to start regularly seeing a dermatologist by age 25. Experts advise scheduling an annual appointment by this age in order to have the best chance of catching any problems early.
The primary reason to see a dermatologist by your mid-20s is due to sun exposure. It only takes one blistering sunburn, which can happen in childhood, to put you at risk of developing skin cancer. Many times, skin cancer goes undetected because the person doesn’t realize that their moles are changing. An annual skin cancer screening can help reduce this risk, as a dermatology specialist will map your existing moles, look for changes, and assess risks. Successfully treating skin cancer depends heavily on early detection, and if you have a family history of skin cancer, that’s an even greater reason to get an annual screening.
Many people are also using the wrong skin care products for their skin -- or don’t have a skin care regimen in place at all. Visiting a dermatologist allows you to ask questions and get recommendations for skin care. An anti-aging skin care regimen should also be started around age 25 in order to prevent common signs of aging like wrinkles and scarring. As we age, our skin produces less and less collagen and elastin, which keep skin firm and supple. An anti-aging line of products can help promote collagen and elastin production, keeping skin looking younger longer.
On the other hand, you might be one of the millions who have problematic skin concerns like acne, eczema, or rosacea. In this case, you should visit a dermatologist as soon as these conditions persist or worsen. Commonly, people first see a dermatologist as teenagers because hormonal changes can wreak havoc on the skin. Acne is caused by increases in sebum (oil) production but can be helped with advice and prescriptions from a dermatologist.
Even little ones can present with skin conditions, so if you see things like eczema -- a common problem in kids -- on your child’s skin, you can schedule an appointment with a pediatric dermatologist. The bottom line is, it’s never too early to start seeing a dermatologist, but if you’re in your mid-twenties and haven’t gone yet, make an appointment! And remember, wash and moisturize your skin regularly, use gentle products, and always wear sunscreen when you’re exposing skin to UV light.
Looking for a dermatologist? If you’re in the Cincinnati, Ohio area, contact The Dermatology Group today for an appointment. Our board-certified specialists have a wealth of knowledge about various skin conditions and can perform annual skin cancer screenings in-office.