Dr Gavin answers some of her patients’ most frequently asked questions regarding her services and procedures.

1When should I see a dermatologist?
Your skincare is important, so it is never too late or too soon for a check-up. You should see a dermatologist if you are struggling with any skin, hair or nail problems such as acne, eczema or psoriasis. It’s also important to see a dermatologist if you have moles, have a family history of skin cancer or have any cosmetic concerns.
2What are some of the common skincare mistakes I could be making?

The first mistake you could be making is using the wrong cleanser for your skin type, combination with other medication or the season of the year. In winter, you need to change to creamier cleansers, while in summer, you can consider foam or gel cleansers that are lighter. The wrong skin cleanser can leave your skin feel dry and irritated or oily.

People often make the mistake of scrubbing their skin with cleansers that contain harsh chemicals to get rid of acne, but this only worsens the condition and leads to contact dermatitis. Over exfoliation can lead to worsening of acne.

Another mistake you might be making is thinking you only need to wear sunscreen when you are outside and the sun is shining. Some indoor lights can worsen pigmentation and some UV rays still reach you despite clouds in the air. So the best practice is to wear sunscreen daily as part of your morning routine.

3How do I get rid of warts?
Treatment for warts depends on the type. A wart is a rough bump on the skin that arises as a result of the human papillomavirus. Warts may be frozen or burnt off. It's common before treatment to check for dots that are clotted vessels beneath the first skin layer. Shaving off a section of the wart is necessary for biopsy. Excess tissue can be surgically removed or a laser can be used to burn the wart’s blood vessels. After laser therapy, the infected tissue dies, and the wart peels off.
4Is there a treatment for rosacea and acne?
Rosacea is incurable but can be managed using topical creams, oral antibiotics and light or laser therapy. Laser treatment and phototherapy relieve redness of swollen blood vessels. These treatments need to happen repeatedly to maintain the appearance of your skin. Antibacterial agents treat mild acne. Moderate or severe acne requires intensive surface treatment and a round of oral antibiotics or systemic retinoids.
5Why do I need a chemical peel?
There are different chemical peels of various strengths. Superficial or medium depth peels gently lift the upper layers of skin to reveal healthy, smooth-looking skin. Chemical peels are great when you have wrinkles, uneven skin tone, acne-prone skin, pigmentation, sun-damaged skin or scars. Every second week, a superficial chemical peel may be repeated to minimise the appearance of fine wrinkles. To achieve optimal results, chemical peels need to be repeated 4-6 times with adequate time in between.
6How long does it take for the effects of Botulinum toxin (Botox) to show?
The time it takes for the effects of Botox to kick in varies. Usually, within seven days after treatment, you will notice younger, smoother and tight-looking skin. Some people may have to wait up to two weeks for the effects of Botox to show.

“What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”

– John Lubbock