asthma and eczema

Our bodies are intricate systems, where one component often influences another. Certain conditions often go hand in hand such as eczema and asthma.

While they manifest in different ways, with one affecting our skin and the other our respiratory system, their underlying connections tell a fascinating tale about our body’s reactions and sensitivities.

Here we’ll explore the link between eczema and asthma.

Understanding the link between eczema and asthma

Eczema and asthma are both conditions that are associated with loss of function mutations in the genes for a protein called filaggrin whose role is to stick together the cells in the top layer of the skin and the lining of the lungs. This leads to a leaky skin barrier; a bit like a dry stone wall rather than a cemented brick wall.

The skin can then become inflamed in response to irritants and allergens in the environment causing an eczema flare-up with skin that is red, itchy, and it sometimes even oozes or forms crusty patches.

Similarly people with asthma are more prone to developing inflammation in the lungs triggered by allergens in the air. This can lead to symptoms including coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath.

Both conditions can be triggered by factors that vary from person to person. Sometimes the triggers cause both eczema and asthma symptoms. These triggers include:

  • Allergens – e.g. dust mites, pollen or mould
  • Irritants – e.g. dust, smoke and some chemical ingredients in household cleaners
  • Changes in weather – especially dry, cold air
  • Stress – causing hormonal changes

It’s important to note that not everyone with eczema will have asthma. However, if you have severe eczema symptoms, there’s a higher chance you’ll develop the respiratory condition. There’s also evidence to suggest that if a child has both conditions, it’s likely they’ll carry these symptoms into adulthood.

What causes eczema to suddenly develop in adults?

Although eczema most commonly presents in children, sometimes it starts later in life. Many adults suddenly find themselves dealing with this skin condition, often puzzled by its sudden appearance.

A variety of factors can be at play here. Stress, which we know can affect our health in all kinds of ways, can be a significant trigger for adult-onset eczema. Hormonal shifts, too, can play a role, as can environmental changes.

Everything from moving to a different climate to exposure to certain chemicals can influence our skin’s health. It’s a reminder that our skin, the body’s largest organ, is deeply sensitive to both internal and external changes.

Effective treatment options for eczema

If you do suffer from eczema, the good news is there are effective treatment options available. Modern medicine offers a range of solutions, from topical creams designed to soothe the skin, to more advanced therapies that target the underlying inflammation.

For a tailored approach to managing eczema, book an appointment with Dr Juliet Williams. With her expertise, you can begin treatment that is designed specifically for your unique needs and challenges.

Treating one condition has the potential to clear up the other. However, if you are struggling with symptoms of asthma, it is recommended to seek advice and treatment from your general practitioner.

Mental health and skin conditions

Our skin often reflects our inner health and wellbeing, but did you know it can also reflect our mental state?

The British Skin Foundation reports that in the UK 60% of people are living with a skin condition currently or have previously. As a result, many experience issues with self-perception, confidence, and with their overall mental health.

In this blog, we’ll explore the link between mental health and skin conditions, and the treatments available to those who are suffering.

How skin conditions impact mental health

Our skin is not just the body’s largest organ; it’s a significant aspect of our overall appearance.

When skin conditions like acne, eczema, or psoriasis flare up, they do more than just affect how we look – they can deeply impact our mental wellbeing.

Living with persistent redness, itching, or unsightly blemishes can take a toll on our health and confidence, leading to feelings of embarrassment, isolation, or even depression. Managing the daily discomfort of skin conditions can make it hard to focus on other aspects of life.

It’s important to recognise that our mental health and skin health are intertwined, and caring for one often means tending to the other.

One in five people are unhappy with their skin and appearance

A study by the British Skin Foundation in 2021 involving over 200 participants revealed how significant a skin condition is to overall happiness. It found that one out of every five people were unhappy with how they looked. Furthermore, four out of every five people reported that their appearance directly influenced their overall wellbeing.

The study also found that over half (53%) of those who had some form of skin condition felt they faced judgement from others. These figures highlight the importance of addressing skin concerns, not only for physical health but for emotional wellbeing too.

Over a third (35%) of those surveyed said that their skin condition affected their mental health. But, less than half would book an appointment with a GP, with over half (62%) not believing that their condition was ‘serious enough’.

A staggering 92% of respondents also felt there is a need for increased research into all types of skin conditions.

Seeking treatment for skin conditions

If you are struggling with a skin disease, remember you’re not alone, and help is available. With guidance from a skin expert, you can discover effective treatment options that will help you to manage your condition.

Make the first step to overcoming your skin condition by scheduling an appointment with Consultant Dermatologist Dr Juliet Williams. Her warm and compassionate approach ensures every patient receives a supportive and tailored treatment plan, designed to address their individual needs. She treats adults and children with a range of dermatological conditions including acne, rashes, skin lesions, eczema and psoriasis.

If you also find your skin condition is affecting your mental health, don’t be afraid to seek therapy to help you deal with the emotional symptoms.

oral collagen supplements

Every time we scroll through our social media feeds, it seems like there’s a new influencer praising the wonders of collagen supplements. Promoted as the holy grail for radiant skin, robust nails, and glossy hair, it’s no wonder they are rising in popularity.

Collagen is the primary building block that lends elasticity and strength to our skin, ensures our nails aren’t brittle, and gives our hair a natural shine. The question is, are these oral supplements as effective as they claim? Let’s find out…

What are oral collagen supplements?

Collagen supplements, sold as capsules, drinks, or powders, promise to replenish the body’s depleting collagen levels. They are processed from animal tissues and believed can boost collagen in your body, fostering healthier hair, skin, and nails.

Not all collagen supplements are produced to the same standards. This is especially true when you’re buying them online, as you have no idea what is really going into them. Some may contain unlisted ingredients, or vary in collagen concentration, posing concerns for consumers about what they’re truly ingesting.

Do oral collagen supplements work?

Recent research offers some insights into the potential benefits of collagen supplements. A significant review of 19 studies published in the International Journal of Dermatology found participants who took collagen supplements reported improved skin texture and hydration.

However, a deeper dive reveals that many of these supplements had additional ingredients beyond collagen. For example, vitamins and antioxidants, making it challenging to attribute results solely to collagen.

Collagen from oral supplements cannot be absorbed whole. It is broken down in the gastrointestinal tract into individual peptides which can be taken up into the bloodstream. Once they have been further broken down, some of these peptides may become the building blocks to form proteins. For example, keratin that form our skin, hair, and nails. At present, however, there are no studies that unequivocally prove that collagen from oral supplements will end up in the skin, hair and nails.

When it comes to hair and nails, the evidence is even sparser. A 2017 study noted improved nail health with collagen intake, but its limited sample size and lack of a control group make conclusions tentative at best.

Finding effective treatments for hair, skin, and nails

If you’re experiencing issues related to your hair, skin, or nails, avoid turning to unverified online collagen supplements.

Before wasting money on collagen supplements, consider consulting with a dermatologist. They will get to the root cause of your concerns and provide expert advice on potential treatment options.

Types of Sunscreen

As we move from summer into Autumn, we reflect on which sunscreens are most effective in different climate conditions. When the weather shifts from pleasant warmth to an intense heatwave, our skin, which is constantly exposed to the sun’s rays, becomes even more vulnerable.

Extended exposure to extreme heat increases the risk of sunburn, early signs of ageing, and even skin cancer. Therefore, choosing the right sunscreen isn’t just about preventing a burn; it’s about comprehensive skin health.

So, which type of sunscreen will give the best protection against the sun? Here, we’ll take a closer look at the main sunscreen types, with advice on how to stay protected.

Types of sunscreen for extreme heat protection

When it comes to choosing the right sunscreen, it’s crucial to understand that they are not all made equal. You have two primary choices – mineral or chemical solutions. While both types offer protection from the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, their mechanisms are significantly different.

The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) generally advises the use of water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreens with an SPF of 30 or above. However, during intense heat waves, with temperatures soaring above 32 degrees Celsius and accompanied by high humidity, mineral sunscreens are the best option.

What are mineral sunscreens?

Mineral sunscreens contain ingredients like titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. They act as a shield, reflecting UV rays before they can penetrate and harm the skin. Earlier versions of mineral sunscreens were notorious for their thick texture and noticeable white residue. However, thanks to advances in skincare, modern formulations with mineral nanoparticles blend seamlessly into the skin.

In contrast, chemical sunscreens absorb UV rays, transforming them into heat, which is then released. The chemicals in these sunscreens enter the bloodstream over time, and there’s an ongoing debate on the implications of long-term usage.

Tips for using sunscreen in extreme heat

Extreme heat demands an extreme response when it comes to sun protection. Firstly, it’s essential to apply sunscreen more frequently. The heat will cause it to absorb faster, and it also comes off when you sweat. Watch out for signs your skin could use a sunscreen top-up. Remember, it’s always better to be over generous with your application than applying too little.

Secondly, where you store your sunscreen matters. Prolonged exposure to heat can degrade the protective compounds in sunscreens. So, always keep your sunscreen bottles in a cool, shaded place, preferably inside your bag or in the shade.

Of course, you should also follow general sun protection measures. Avoid the sun during peak sunlight hours, cover the skin with thin loose-fitting clothing, wear protective sunglasses and hats, and stay hydrated.

Armed with the right sunscreen and following these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy the sun safely, even during the most blistering heat waves.

If you aren’t sure which type of sunscreen you should be using, or you have any skin concerns, book an appointment with Dr Juliet Williams today by calling 01483 555907.

Melasma

Facial hyperpigmentation can be a significant concern and have an impact on self-confidence and daily life. There are various types of facial discoloration, and melasma is one of the most common. It manifests as flat, brown areas on the face that are often symmetrical and become more noticeable after exposure to the sun.

While these changes to the skin’s appearance may be distressing, understanding the nature of melasma and other forms of facial hyperpigmentation, as well as their causes and treatments, can be empowering.

In this blog, you’ll learn more about facial hyperpigmentation, what causes melasma, and the various treatment options available.

What is facial hyperpigmentation?

Facial hyperpigmentation is a condition where patches of skin become darker. This occurs when the skin produces an excess amount of melanin, the pigment responsible for skin colour.

It can affect any skin type and is more likely to occur during specific times such as pregnancy, age, or following an injury. Among the various manifestations of hyperpigmentation, melasma is the most common, known for its brown or greyish patches, typically on the face. Often, it can be confused with sun/age or liver spots. However, these dark spots are caused by repeated sun exposure and not influenced by hormones.

Melasma, also referred to as ‘chloasma’ or ‘pregnancy mask,’ is neither contagious nor cancerous, and it’s not an infection or allergy. It usually affects mainly women, especially during pregnancy, but men can also be affected.

What causes melasma?

The cause of melasma isn’t fully understood, but it is believed to result from the skin’s pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) creating too much melanin. While it can affect anyone, those with naturally darker skin tones are more likely to experience the condition. Several contributing factors can lead to its development, including hormonal changes from pregnancy, birth control pills or hormone replacement. Also, occasionally, medical problems affecting hormones, such as thyroid issues.

Some medications, like antiepileptics, may also cause the condition. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light, whether from the sun or artificial sources like sunbeds or phototherapy, can trigger or exacerbate melasma.

It’s worth noting that while melasma is more common in those with a family history, it is not considered hereditary.

How to treat melasma

While there’s no permanent cure for melasma right now, several treatment options can improve its appearance. If it occurs during pregnancy, it might naturally fade post-delivery, though it can return with subsequent pregnancies. Keep in mind that during pregnancy, certain treatments like hydroquinone and retinoid creams must be avoided due to potential harm to the foetus.

Various approaches can be effective in treating melasma, including avoiding known triggers like birth control pills and hormone therapy, or using sun-blocking creams to shield against UV exposure.

Options such as chemical peels, laser therapy, skin lightening creams, micro needling, and skin camouflage, can also be considered. However, sometimes even with successful treatment, it can return once the treatments are stopped. Therefore, ongoing management of the condition may be required.

More recently, evidence has suggested that oral tranexamic acid is an effective treatment for melasma, and research is underway to evaluate topical tranexamic acid to treat the condition.

If you are struggling to manage your melasma, or you suspect your skin troubles are down to hyperpigmentation, book an appointment with Dr Juliet Williams by emailing info@drjulietwilliams.co.uk.

skin cancer cases

Package holidays have made it easier than ever before to jet off abroad and enjoy a sun-filled holiday. However, a hidden cost is emerging. Recent findings from Cancer Research UK, reveal an alarming increase in melanoma skin cancer cases in the UK, reaching a record high of 17,500 cases each year.

What’s more concerning is the pronounced rise in skin cancer cases among adults aged 55 and over, a demographic that may have enjoyed those sunny, budget-friendly holidays in the past. It highlights the importance of sun protection in childhood and beyond.

In this blog, you’ll discover more about melanoma, one of the most common types of skin cancer, and how you can protect yourself.

What is melanoma?

Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that develops in the cells responsible for producing melanin, the pigment that gives our skin its colour. Unlike other forms of skin cancer, melanoma can be more aggressive, spreading to other parts of the body if not treated early.

It often appears as a new spot or growth on the skin, or a change in an existing mole. While it can develop anywhere on the body, it’s usually found in areas frequently exposed to the sun.

Understanding melanoma is essential, as early detection and treatment can significantly increase the chances of a successful recovery.

Keep an eye on moles

Detecting melanoma in its early stages is crucial for effective treatment. A new or changing mole could be a melanoma, so keeping an eye on moles can be a lifesaving habit.
Regular self-examinations of the skin to check for changes in size, shape, colour, or feel of moles can make all the difference. Look for asymmetry, irregular borders, varied colours, and growth.

You can also undergo regular mole checks at a dermatologist clinic for peace of mind.

If any suspicious changes are noted, seeking medical attention quickly is vital. A healthcare provider can conduct a thorough examination and, if necessary, remove a small sample for biopsy to determine if it’s cancerous.

The importance of sun protection

As we discover the connection between increased melanoma skin cancer cases and exposure to the sun, the role of sun protection becomes more critical than ever.

Protection against harmful UV rays is not just about avoiding sunburn; it’s a vital part of preventing skin cancer. This includes applying sunscreen with a high SPF, wearing protective clothing like hats and sunglasses, seeking shade during peak sunlight hours, and avoiding tanning beds.

Sun protection is not just for sunny days, but a year-round commitment that can significantly reduce the risk of developing melanoma and other skin-related health issues.

If you are concerned about any changes in your moles, or if you would like to book a skin examination, schedule an appointment with Dr Juliet Williams by emailing info@drjulietwilliams.co.uk.

Skin Itching and Anxiety

Ever noticed how persistent skin itching seems to get worse when you’re feeling stressed or anxious? You’re not alone – and it’s not all in your head. Chronic itchiness and anxiety often go hand in hand, creating a vicious cycle that can affect your behaviour and even your overall quality of life.

This scratch-anxiety loop doesn’t just affect those with certain skin conditions. Those who don’t have any pre-existing skin conditions can also experience this frustrating and perplexing behaviour. Thankfully, there are things you can do to stop that itch. Anxiety-calming and itch-relieving treatments have both shown promise in breaking the cycle.

Here, we’ll look at the connection between anxiety and itchy skin and what you can do to tackle it.

The skin itching-anxiety cycle

Think of your brain as a central command centre that springs into action when you’re under stress. This reaction leads to a domino effect that releases a mix of hormones and chemicals, sparking inflammation not just inside your body, but also on your skin.

When you’re feeling emotionally wound up, like when you’re experiencing anxiety, your body pumps out a stress hormone called cortisol, which is notorious for stirring up or worsening skin issues, including itchiness. So why does this happen?

Stress may mess up your skin’s natural defences, hinder the production of skin-protecting factors (like lipids), and even alter blood flow in your skin. These changes can lead to skin redness, dryness, and flaking – all of which could make you feel itchy.

While this response is entirely normal, remember, it doesn’t mean that everyone feeling stressed will get itchy. Both temporary and long-term psychological stress can influence how itchy we feel.

How can you prevent stress itching?

Preventing the itch begins with knowing what triggers it. For many people, the main causes are stress, anxiety, or existing skin conditions. To handle these triggers, it’s key to explore ways to control them effectively. If you’re dealing with a skin condition for example, a dermatologist can help treat the issue.

If you are suffering with anxiety related skin itching, treating the anxiety issue will help. Tackling both the emotional troubles and skin issues simultaneously is key to eliminating the issue. There are lots of ways to manage anxiety. Some people might find relief through talking therapies, while others might benefit from medications.

Let’s not forget about the role of stress management in breaking the itch-stress cycle too. It’s crucial to find a strategy that works for you, as there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Maybe you’ll discover that regular meditation calms your mind, or perhaps a good workout does the trick.

Treatment strategies to scratch out anxiety

If you’re frequently tormented by itchy skin, one of the best things you can do is schedule an appointment with a dermatologist. There’s a diverse range of strategies you can use to soothe chronic skin itching, and they often begin with simple changes to your everyday skincare routine.

When your skin is dry, consider applying emollients regularly. Try using ones containing skin-friendly ingredients like ceramides, glycerine, or hyaluronic acid. And if your skin is very dry, occlusive formulations, like those with paraffin, might help. Also, cooling your creams in the fridge or applying cool gel packs to the itchy areas can bring much relief.

Lifestyle changes can also make a significant difference in managing stress-induced skin itching. You might find relief through mind-calming practices like breathing exercises, muscle relaxation techniques, or your favourite form of meditation. Keeping yourself hydrated, eating a well-balanced diet, and getting a good night’s sleep are also vital for maintaining healthy skin. Also, remember, your scalp can itch too. Consider a targeted shampoo if you’re dealing with a dry, itchy scalp.

Remember, while these strategies may help, they’re not substitutes for seeking professional advice from a skin expert. If you’re dealing with persistent itchiness, schedule an appointment with Consultant Dermatologist Dr Juliet Williams today by calling 01483 555907.

detecting skin cancers

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is making waves in the medical field, particularly in detecting skin cancers. A recent study into an AI-driven tool, known as the Deep Ensemble for the Recognition of Malignancy (DERM), has proven highly accurate in identifying two common forms of skin cancer – squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and basal cell carcinoma (BCC).

This smart tool isn’t just good at spotting cancerous lesions; it can also help manage non-cancerous ones too. So, could AI be the key to detecting and treating skin cancer early? Here, we look at how AI can aid a dermatologist when detecting skin cancers.

AI-power for early detection of skin cancers

UK doctors carried out a study to determine whether the DERM tool could be successful in detecting skin cancers. A total of 572 participants were included, who were primarily elderly patients, across four NHS centres. Anyone with a suspicious skin mark that could be photographed was included. These marks were captured using smartphones that were each equipped with a special lens for skin examination.

The study collected images of 592 skin marks, and for 395 of these marks, a skin tissue test result was available for comparison. The marks were mostly found on the head and scalp, legs, arms, and back. A total of 176 basal cell carcinoma, 44 squamous cell carcinoma, and 297 non-cancerous marks were detected.

The doctors also categorised the chance of each mark being skin cancer, from ‘unlikely’ to ‘highly likely’. The AI tool analysed these images, and its performance was consistent across all three smartphones, despite each one capturing slightly different pictures due to factors like lighting variations.

Could AI be the key to addressing dermatology shortages?

AI technology could be a game-changer for dermatologists currently struggling with their workflow. Referrals for potential skin cancers have doubled over the past decade to over 700 per 100,000 people. However, the number of dermatologists hasn’t risen at the same level. This has led to a shortage in the profession, with current dermatologists struggling to keep up with demand.

The situation is exacerbated by an ageing population, many of whom are sun-lovers. This is where AI steps in. By accurately identifying both cancerous and non-cancerous skin lesions, AI could help dermatologists prioritise cases and streamline their workflow. This could, in turn, enable faster diagnosis and treatment for patients, an essential factor in effective skin cancer management.

Do I still need to see a Dermatologist?

While AI technology for skin cancer detection is making headway, it cannot yet match the skill and experience of an experienced dermatologist.

Dermatologists are equipped with years of medical training and an intricate understanding of skin health. They can quickly detect early skin cancer symptoms, some of which are not yet recognisable by AI. They can also quickly organise treatment if skin cancer is detected, increasing the likelihood of a successful outcome. From biopsies to removing cancerous lesions, their immediate interventions can be lifesaving.

If you notice any unusual changes in your skin, or you have any skin concerns, schedule an appointment with Consultant Dermatologist Dr. Juliet Williams straight away by calling 01483 555907.

Eczema and hay fever

As the summer days roll in and holiday anticipation builds, many of us bask in the joy and excitement that the season brings. However, for eczema sufferers, the summer period might present a different narrative, as seasonal elements such as heat, dry air, and pollen make their skin especially itchy and uncomfortable.

People with eczema are more prone to hay fever and in this piece we look into this connection as well as offer strategies for staving off an outbreak of eczema in the hay fever season.

Why does eczema often get worse in the hay fever season?

Hay fever and eczema are interconnected due to their shared root cause – an immune system hyper-response to external triggers. Hay fever primarily develops due to pollen, an allergen, which results in an inflammatory response.

For eczema sufferers, their skin barrier is often compromised, making it easier for allergens to penetrate the skin and activate the immune response. This triggers inflammation, leading to worsening of eczema symptoms.

Recent studies also point towards shared genetic risk factors for both conditions, adding another layer of complexity to their relationship.

Protecting eczema-prone skin

Eczema-prone skin requires special care, especially during seasons when allergens are prevalent. Applying a moisturiser frequently, can help maintain the skin’s protective barrier and prevent it from drying out. Also, choose skin care products that are fragrance-free and hypoallergenic, to avoid further irritation. If you are not sure, Dr Williams can help advise on the most suitable skincare products for your condition.

If you’re heading outdoors, cover up exposed skin and consider wearing a sun hat to protect your face. While sunscreen is necessary, ensure it is suitable for sensitive skin.

Plan ahead

To minimise hay fever and eczema flare-ups, it’s wise to plan your outdoor activities in advance. Monitor pollen forecasts and try to stay indoors when the pollen count is high.

Schedule your outings during early mornings or late evenings when pollen levels tend to be lower. Remember, it’s not just about avoiding pollen but also about ensuring you have your necessary medications as well as topical creams at hand.

Keep pollen out of the home

While it’s great to let fresh air into your home, open windows also provide an easy entry for pollen. Try to limit the amount of pollen that gets into your home by keeping windows closed during peak pollen hours. Regularly cleaning your home, changing your clothes after being outdoors, and washing your pets can also limit the amount of pollen indoors.

Allergy testing and eczema

It is important to recognise that eczema is strongly associated with genetic defects in the skin barrier, and although allergies are more common in patients with eczema, allergy is not the only factor driving eczema. For patients who suspect that they may have allergies driving their eczema Dr Williams will take a clinically focussed allergy history. If needed she can organise allergy testing and advise if a referral to an allergist is necessary.

Treating eczema

Since many patients find that eczema is more difficult to control in the hay fever season, it is particularly important to have the right treatment for it. Emollients are important for all patients with eczema and Dr Williams can provide a tailored treatment plan including the right strength of topical cortico-steroids and sometimes calcineurin inhibitors. Schedule an appointment now by calling 01483 555907.

Sunscreen Mistakes

In the UK, skin cancer holds the unfortunate title of being the most frequently diagnosed cancer. The silver lining is that with early detection, most of these cases can be successfully treated.

Ensuring your skin is adequately shielded with high-quality sunscreen is the best way to protect it. Still, it might surprise you to learn that there are a few mistakes that you might be making when it comes to sunscreen application.

Here, we look at some of the most common sunscreen mistakes and how you can avoid them.

1. Not checking the label

The sunscreen aisle offers plenty of choice, but it’s vital to understand what to look for to ensure optimum sun protection. Select a sunscreen that’s broad-spectrum (protects against both UVA and UVB rays), water-resistant, and offers a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30. Don’t let the marketing buzzwords distract you from these essential features.

2. Only applying sunscreen in sunny weather

It’s a common misconception that sunscreen is only necessary when the sun’s out. However, about 80% of harmful UV rays can still reach your skin on a cloudy day. So, don’t skip sunscreen just because it’s overcast. Make it a habit to apply sunscreen whenever you step outside, irrespective of the weather, to shield your skin effectively.

3. Using too little sunscreen

An insufficient amount of sunscreen won’t provide the full level of SPF protection. Many people apply only 25-50% of the required amount. For comprehensive coverage, adults should use about one ounce of sunscreen – roughly the amount that can fill a shot glass. Apply it 15 minutes before heading outdoors and reapply every two hours or immediately after sweating or swimming.

4. Using out of date sunscreen

Sunscreens don’t last forever. By law, they must retain their original efficacy for a minimum of three years. If your sunscreen has expired or if you’re unsure about its age, it’s best to replace it. When buying a new bottle, if it doesn’t have an expiration date, jot down the purchase date directly on the bottle to remind you when it’s time to replace it.

Despite our best intentions, we often overlook or underestimate the risks associated with sun exposure. But, making simple changes, such as applying an ample amount of a broad-spectrum sunscreen, and not only on sunny days, can significantly reduce your risk of skin damage and potential skin cancer.

However, prevention is just one part of the equation. Regular skin checks are paramount to catch any potential issues early when they are most treatable. An expert eye can make all the difference in detecting subtle changes that could signify a problem. Dr Juliet Williams is highly skilled in conducting comprehensive mole checks and addressing precancerous skin lesions.

Don’t take a gamble with your skin health. Protect it today by scheduling an appointment with Juliet.

After all, your skin is your body’s largest organ, and it deserves the best care possible.