For first-timers, a skin check with a dermatologist can be a bit overwhelming. Not quite sure how to prepare for your appointment? No worries, we’re breaking it down for you in five easy steps.
1. Be on time, or even better, be early
More than likely, your dermatologist’s schedule will be very busy. Arriving early will alleviate rushed appointments, cut down on wait times, and allow extra time for filling out any necessary paperwork.
2. Know what’s up
Come to your appointment knowing yours and your family’s medical history. If you have ever had any skin irregularities or prior biopsies, discuss your results with the dermatologist. Explain the type of irregularity and when it happened - these are both pertinent pieces of information for your dermatologist to know during your evaluation. It’s also a good idea to be prepared with a list of all medications, including vitamins, you're taking and products you’re currently using on your skin.
3. So fresh & so clean
When performing a dermatologic exam, it is essential that the doctor be able to examine your entire body. For this reason, arrive to your appointment freshly showered. Avoid wearing any makeup or hair products (such as dry shampoo or hairspray) that may obscure your skin and scalp. The same concept applies to nail polish – it covers the skin underneath your nails, which also must be checked – so it should be removed prior to your appointment.
4. Be prepared to bare it all
When you come in for an evaluation, your entire body will need to be examined. Signs of skin cancer can be found anywhere on the body – even where the sun doesn’t shine, like the soles of your feet – and that is when it can be the most dangerous.
5. Ask questions
Chances are good you have some questions for your dermatologist. Write down a list of questions and concerns you would like to discuss with your doctor.
It is always better to be prepared before arriving to your appointment. Knowing what is expected will help you to be more comfortable during your exam.
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