Dr. Vince Afsahi, M.D. and Board Certified Dermatologist of South Coast Dermatology Institute talks best practices for a lifetime of healthy looking skin.
How do you choose a skin care line for your practice? Every individual is unique. We have both genetic and environmental factors which contribute to our skin’s appearance and what we see in the mirror. Some patients will fight sensitive skin. Others may fight sun damage or premature aging. Because problems are variable, every patient we see in our office undergoes a customized approach to skin care. The science of medicine helps us approach patient issues with research proven regimens that have stood the test of time and with data to back it up. The art of dermatology is to develop a routine for each patient based on what we see and what our patient’s goals are. In our office, we draw the best products from several skin care lines and our own unique formulas for a total approach to dermatological care. We utilize combinations of cleansers, serums, hydration treatments, anti-oxidant therapies and other modalities in our complete and individualized approach to skin care.
What are you seeing in the media that’s questionable to you, and why? The public is bombarded by advertising with unrealistic outcomes and prices that are incompatible with the quality of a product and/or its delivery. It would be wise to scrutinize advertisements for a filler, toxin, or other procedure that is well below average pricing in the community. The cheapest cosmetic surgery is not always the best cosmetic surgery.
As we age, what is the one thing we should be doing daily to care for our skin? I tell my patients that the most “bang for the buck” is a good sunblock that you are actually going to wear. SPF 30 and above with Zinc or Titanium Dioxide offers the best protection. The newer products are cosmetically elegant and feel like you are not wearing anything. They do not turn you greasy and white like the old days. Something that we should not be doing is smoking. Together the sun and smoking can result in premature aging and poor healing. Doing the right things today can protect you in the future.
How do you know which is the best laser to choose for patient’s skin? Do you have a current favorite, and why? In our offices we have over 14 task specific lasers that treat a variety of skin issues. Every laser has a specific target. One laser may target hair, another may target brown spots. The fact that every patient has a unique problem demands that we offer a variety of solutions. A very popular device we use in our office today covers a variety of common patient problems in a wide range of skin types – the Sublative treatment. This treatment uses fractional radiofrequency energy to stimulate to collagen formation in the skin. It can be used to treat wrinkles, fine lines, acne scars, and photo-aging with minimal downtime.
What are some of the new emerging trends or technology within the field? An exciting new realm of aesthetic medicine is that of non surgical body contouring. The Ultrashape device, using focused ultrasound energy, can permanently destroy fat cells. It has been used on the stubborn areas of the body including love handles, the belly and thighs. Patients love having a non surgical option when diet and exercise is not enough.
Do you have any one laser that can offer treatment for many different skin disorders? The Vbeam laser is the gold standard for many dermatological treatments. The laser targets hemoglobin and therefore can help many inflammatory problems such as rosacea and acne. Moreover, it targets blood vessels and telangectasia we see on sun damaged skin. The Vbeam can treat both aesthetic and medical conditions and is very versatile for these reasons. Most treatments have very little downtime and is usually a very quick procedure. It is a very popular with patients.