Dr. Doris Day Dermatology
Dr. Day on The View
Dr. Doris Day sits with the women of The View discussing skin rejuvenation treatments.
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Dr. Doris Day, a dermatologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York, contributed this article to LiveScience’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.
The American Cancer Society reports that death rates for many cancers in the United States have fallen — but that’s not the case for melanoma. In fact, the numbers are only getting worse: One person dies from malignant melanoma every hour in the U.S.
With changes in both climate and the ozone layer, increased use of tanning beds, a constant barrage from special-interest groups questioning the safety of sunscreen ingredients, and the perceived need for sun exposure for vitamin D, the public is increasingly uncertain as to how to safely enjoy time outdoors without putting their skin at increased risk for skin cancer.
Melanoma rates have been increasing for the past 30 years. It is one of the more common cancers in people younger than 30, and the most common cancer in adults ages 25 to 29. Those who tan in indoor ultraviolet (UV) tanners are 74 percent more likely to develop melanoma than those who have never tanned indoors. A person’s risk for melanoma doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns (even if they were not severe).
The facts are no longer being disputed: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has declared UV radiation from the sun and artificial sources, such as tanning beds and sun lamps, as a known carcinogen — and indoor tanning lamps emit UVA and UVB radiation at levels that can be as much as 15 times stronger than those of the sun. The American Academy of Dermatology, the Skin Cancer Foundation and others have been working overtime to encourage laws to minimize or ban the use of tanning beds by minors, and even add a warning label on tanning beds, much like what you see on a package of cigarettes — but they’re up against a multibillion-dollar tanning-salon industry with a large lobbying group.
Awareness is key. More than 2 million nonmelanoma skin cancers are diagnosed annually, but surprisingly, only 37 percent of American adults believe they are at risk for skin cancer. Seventy-six percent of American adults have not had a skin-cancer screening by a dermatologist. Only 23 percent of American adults perform monthly mole self-checks. One of the most important aspects is understanding sun-smart behavior . This means trying to avoid midday sun, staying in the shade when possible, wearing physical protection, such as hats and sun-protective clothing and sunglasses, and applying a sunscreen with sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher and reapplying it regularly throughout the day. It’s also important to have regular skin exams from a dermatologist, since the cure rate for melanoma is greater than 98 percent when found early.
New treatments for advanced melanoma , Lambrolizumab and Nivolumab, are turning out to be game changers, and literally lifesavers, for those who in the past had very limited — and toxic — treatment options. The newest treatments work to boost the body’s immune response and lead to tumor regression and prolonged survival, with limited toxicity, in a significant number of patients. This is very encouraging and may be only the beginning. The next steps are to identify patients’ individual genetic influences on tumor cells (to reliably identify and treat patients based on how they will respond to a given medication), and to amplify those effects for more complete and lasting results.
In the meantime, keep your hat on, apply your sunscreen, have a skin-cancer screening and enjoy the summer ahead!
The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. This article was originally published on LiveScience.com .
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Calling all gadget girls! Home light-emitting diode devices emit low, painless levels of energy to treat wrinkles and dark spots from the comfort of your couch. Just don’t expect miracles, says Doris Day, M.D., a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University Medical Center in NYC. “You won’t look like you’ve had a face-lift, but they can improve signs of aging over time,” she says. They really shine, she adds, when they’re used in conjunction with in-office treatments. Try Tanda Luxe Skin Rejuvenation Photofacial Device ($195; Sephora.com), which uses red light to impart radiance and firm and smooth skin.
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Shrink Your Pores
Combat this common complexion issue with help from Doris Day, M.D. , a dermatologist in New York City and mother of two.
*The first step to minimizing the look of pores is to unclog them. Dr. Day recommends daily use of a gentle exfoliator, such as Olay Regenerist Detoxifying Pore Scrub ($10; soap.com). If your skin’s sensitive, exfoliate a few days a week.
*After washing your face, swipe on an alcohol-free toner containing salicylic acid to sweep away any lingering dead cells. They’re a main cause of enlarged pores.
*For a quick (temporary) fix, wear a product like Laura Geller Mini Spackle Under Make-Up Primer ($10; laurageller.com). It acts like a veil for imperfections.
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When you’re getting ready for a night out, pretty much all of your attention is focused from the neck up. But a little time spent on your legs can have a major impact. Choosing the right shoes, applying the right products, and doing the right exercises can draw admiring glances to your long, supple limbs. Read on to get expert tips that’ll help you step out today with better legs.
If you’ve noticed that it’s a little harder to get the skin on your legs to look as good as the skin of your face, arms, and hands, you’re not imagining things. The legs have fewer oil glands and suffer different abuse than other parts of your body (think bumps, bruises, rubbing, and general man-handling), says Doris Day, a clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University Medical Center. Without the natural moisture from oil glands, the skin tends to try out and take on a reptilian look. Dr. Day suggests treating your legs to a homemade scrub of honey mixed with oatmeal to remove dulling, dead surface skin. Or try Neutrogena’s Sugar Scrub Body Exfoliator ($10.69) for a ready-made skin smoother.
The lack of oil also makes moisturizer crucial for legs that are worthy of display. Immediately after a shower, apply a rich lotion or cream to lock in moisture. Ideally, you want a lotion with a bit of sheen, says Lauren Cosenza, a celebrity makeup artist who has helped prepare the Victoria’s Secret Angels for the catwalk. The shimmer adds definition and helps contour your legs, she says. Try a moisturizing body oil like Vaseline Intensive Care Vitalizing Gel Body Oil ($7.49). Cosenza adds deeper dimension with a touch of MAC’s Strobe Cream ($15) just on the shins “for a sexy highlight,” she says, “and to make legs look more sculpted.”
Use the same makeup tricks you’d use on your face to cover imperfections, suggests Sonia Kashuk, celebrity makeup artist and founder of Sonia Kashuk cosmetics. “Be sure to use a concealer that’s the same color as your legs and not a lighter shade,” she says. If the pigments don’t blend, this will only draw attention to a problem.
For a fast, allover fix, Carmindy, the makeup host of What Not to Wear, suggests applying an aerosol foundation over veins and bruises you want to hide, and then blending with a makeup sponge. Try Sally Hansen’s Natural Beauty Airbrush Spray Makeup ($13.95).
One of the easiest and quickest ways to create a better silhouette for legs is to make the right shoe choices. “We always suggest wearing a nude (the color closest to your particular shade of skin) or neutral shoe to make your legs look longer,” says Venus celebrity fashion stylist Rob Zangardi, who has worked with Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, Kerry Washington, and Kristen Bell. “And the higher the heel, the longer your legs will look,” he says. “You should also avoid ankle straps and ankle boots.”
Try This Move
“Performing body weight squats or split squats periodically throughout the day will definitely give some temporary tone to your legs, and over time will also help them look better,” says Joe Dowdell, a celebrity fitness trainer and the founder of Peak Performance Gym in New York City. So to shorten your hemline with confidence, work this move into your fitness routine:
Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart (you can hold dumbbells while you do this, if you like). Step your left leg about two feet in front of your right. Lower your hips to the floor by bending your left (front) knee, but don’t let your right (back) knee touch the ground. Keep your head and chest up and do not extend your left knee beyond your toes. Return to the starting position by pushing back with your left foot. Repeat on the right side. Do 15 to 20 repetitions on each side.
See a Pro
Dermatologists offer in-office skin treatments that can help you walk out with better legs. Among the options, Day suggests peels to improve sun damage, lighten brown spots, and fade blotchy skin. “There are lasers that can help eliminate fine spider veins, lasers to even out and lighten or eliminate spots caused by the sun, and devices that can help make the skin appear less crepey,” she says.
Another in-office option is sclerotherapy to treat spider veins (this requires multiple treatments, however). Day says sclerotherapy is the “gold standard” and the first choice for most unsightly veins. “The newest FDA-approved product — Asclera — is my favorite,” she says. “It is safe, virtually painless, and very effective.”