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News

07 March 2018
Facial redness and Rosacea
Latest treatment option

02 March 2018
Pigmentation
Causes and treatment

07 February 2018
Dispelling the myths of Botox anti-wrinkle injections

Blog

We are delighted that our doctors, Dr Hilary Allan and Dr Mervyn Patterson, are regularly featured for their expert advice in the national press and glossy magazines. We also have regular blog posts here from the doctors discussing anything that may be affecting you, information on treatments and conditions plus any topics that have been discussed in the media. 

Facial redness and Rosacea

07 March 2018

At various times in our lives most of us suffer from some form of unwanted facial redness either in the form of overall reddening of the skin over the nose and cheeks or patches of broken veins around the cheeks and sides of the nose. It can affect both men and women and can range dramatically in its severity. There are various causes of this but the most common ones are sun damage, skin sensitivity and the most difficult of all, Rosacea.

Rosacea is a skin condition that is extremely common particularly in the fair skin type and is now so common that in certain parts of the country it is almost considered normal.

It is very important that we recognise when it is present as certain treatments can exacerbate the problem and some fairly simple steps can significantly reduce its progression and severity.

Hall marks of Rosacea in the early stages are a tendency to flushing and blushing, facial and neck redness that comes up easily and takes an annoyingly long time to subside. Gradually a more persistent redness starts to appear after the flushing should have subsided. A common story is that after a summer holiday when the tan has faded the skin has a lingering redness that just doesn’t go away. In some individuals surface thread veins may develop but in others it simply appears as a diffuse pink or red colour to the skin. Areas that are commonly affected are the cheeks, nose, forehead, chin, ears, and neck. Spots may or may not be present and can be red or white and often linger for months. A few unfortunate sufferers develop a thickening of the skin and a common area to see this is the nose. A large number have eye symptoms with redness of the whites of the eye and an irritable crustiness along the edges of the eyelids.

Probably the commonest symptom of all with Rosacea is the complaint that their skin is dry or dry sensitive.

What are the underlying causes of Rosacea?

Our knowledge is not complete as to the causes but certain things are known. There is often a strong family history and its high incidence in the pale Celtic skin type suggests there is a genetic predisposition making it more likely to develop. Some studies have shown a clear link to the development of the vascular form and the amount of UV exposure that has occurred. More recent work has established that there is a deficiency in the production of one of the key lipids in the surface of the skin which may contribute to increased penetration of external environmental agents. Certainly the receptors deeper in the skin are at a heightened level making the skin of Rosacea sufferers more responsive to the penetration of things like UV. Certain pathways of inflammation when triggered then induce the formation of blood vessels and increased blood flow to the skin. The skin mite has also come under scrutiny but it is as yet unclear whether this is a contributing factor or just an organism that coincidentally flourishes in Rosacea skin.

How to prevent facial redness and Rosacea

Clearly early recognition of the condition is important. Given that we know that the protective external skin barrier is deficient it is wise to limit UV exposure and avoid skincare routines that are too harsh or involve steps such as physical exfoliation. Microdermabrasion, a popular treatment in skin clinics and salons should be avoided or only be performed mildly and with care. Adopting a rigorous approach to UV protection all year round is a simple step that requires discipline. A good example of a pleasant to use UV protector is Epionce Daily Shield SPF 50. Here is a product that is entirely physical protection with zinc and titanium and thus avoids the potential for chemical irritation. The use of cleansers and moisturisers that are proven to repair the skin barrier and dampen chronic inflammation such as Epionce Gentle Foaming Cleanser and either a Renewal or Intensive Nourishing Cream are sensible products to build into your skincare routine. Most will see a dramatic improvement in the quality and health of their skin with these simple easy to follow steps. The addition of a Lytic product adds ingredients such as salicylic, azelaic and multiple anti inflammatories to deliver a smoother less blemish prone skin without the need to physically scrub the skin. This approach avoids the need to use agents such as glycolic, serums with vitamin C and the higher strength retinoids which in many simply add irritation and sensitivity with little benefit.

Using Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) to reduce redness

A cornerstone of treatment is either IPL to significantly reduce visible red veins and diffuse redness. In our clinics we prefer the response with IPL and call the treatment a Fotofacial where the entire area of skin that is affected is treated. Side effects are generally kept to a minimum so that people can continue their daily routine uninterrupted. Courses of treatments are generally recommended and follow up occasional treatments are advised to maintain results.

It is never too early or too late to take action against redness and Rosacea - our advice is to make an appointment with one of our doctors, nurses or our highly trained therapists who are experienced and knowledgeable in the latest treatments and management of facial redness and Rosacea.

 

Pigmentation

02 March 2018

Our expert doctors explain the causes of pigmentation.

Unwanted skin pigmentation is one of the common conditions we get asked to treat in our clinics and there are a wide range of options for removing or at least significantly reducing the appearance of this problem.

Pigmentation can range from slightly over grown freckle like spots through to larger areas called sun or age spots. Some can be troubled with just one area whilst others can be extensively affected by multiple patches. A separate sub group is those who have a condition called melasma which is a hormone related condition and can involve large patches over the skin.

Pigmentation results from penetration of such things as UV rays and environmental pollution through the external skin barrier into the deeper layers of the skin. The skin’s defence mechanism then responds with several pathways of inflammation which triggers multiple responses, one of which is excitation of the melanocyte, the cell in the skin responsible for making melanin pigment that causes skin to go darker. Regardless of the type of pigmentation or its cause the treatment strategy should involve reversing and controlling these steps. This is why we utilise skincare that has been shown to restore skin barrier function, dampen all pathways of chronic inflammation and reduce the production of melanin from the melanocyte.

Treatments available for pigmentation

There are several treatment options available to us to reduce pigmentation.

Photorejuvenation using Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)

The Fotofacial is a procedure that utilises Intense Pulsed Light to target colour in the skin. Short millisecond pulses of laser light pass into the skin with the light energy being absorbed by the pigmentation cells. Over the following days the pigment darkens, moves to the surface and is removed with the natural turnover of the skin. Not only is pigmentation improved but also redness, facial veins, open pores and fine wrinkles are reduced by a course of Fotofacials.

A word of caution, the IPL Fotofacial is not a good option for the melasma form of pigmentation as this can make the pigment significantly worse.

Skin Peels

Skin peels are very popular and the Epionce Peel is particularly useful as it encourages shedding of the surface pigment whilst stimulating the production of new healthier epidermal cells. It is important not to attack the skin with harsh peels that can remove large amounts of cells and pigment but simply render the skin more irritable and sun sensitive with the risk of triggering yet more pigment production. We no longer believe that deep peels with their subsequent marked skin shedding are sensible but prefer courses of medium strength peels that cause a greater turnover of the epidermal cells without dramatic skin loss.

Skin Needling

Another popular method for treating pigmentation is microneedling where a controlled micro injury encourages reabsorption of pigmented areas and the replacement of these areas with new, healthier skin cells. The DermaFrac treatment for pigmentation combines gentle crystal free microdermabrasion, microneedling under vacuum, infusion of Kojic acid, an ingredient shown to be effective in treating pigmentation and LED light therapy. No anesthetic is required and as there is no down time it can be performed without having to reorganise your busy schedule.

An alternative form of microneedling is the Collagen PIN, an automated pen like device that produces literally hundreds of fine micro injuries vertically down into the skin. Abnormal sun damaged skin is reabsorbed and replaced by the body’s natural repair mechanisms.

Skincare

A fresh look at your skincare regime is necessary if we are to get the best results with pigmentation. As an organisation we reject the commonly used strategy of treating pigmentation with retinol or hydroquinone. Much of the evidence now suggests that this approach although effective in the short term simply produces an unhealthy, irritable skin which is prone to dryness, peeling and sensitivities, particularly extreme sun sensitivity. At the end of such courses of skincare the common result is a rebound appearance of the pigmentation, to a level that is much worse than before you started.

Epionce skincare has been shown in independent clinical studies to be superior to the Obagi approach with the same reduction in pigmentation without the unpleasant skin side effects and the rebound when the active products are discontinued. Instead Epionce Renewals or Intensive Nourishing Cream work to repair the external skin barrier and dampen chronic inflammation that is the driver to the formation of the pigmentation. Combining this with the anti-pigmentary products, Epionce Melanolyte Tx and  Melanolyte Pigment Perfecting Serum is an extremely effective way of both reducing and controlling unwanted pigmentation.

Daily UV protection in the form of SPF 50 is essential to protect against further triggers to pigment formation. Pleasant formulations such as Epionce Daily Shield SPF 50 are physical blocks free from chemicals and safe for constant daily use.

Valentines Day is coming your way

08 February 2018

 

Get yourself looking and feeling gorgeous this Valentine’s day

 

 

Our Senior Therapist Carla shared her tip for getting herself looking and feeling good for Valentine’s Day.

 

  • Step one – Run a warm bath and add lots of delicious foaming bubbles.
  • Step two – Apply a generous covering of Epionce Firming Mask to a cleansed face.
  • Step three – Smooth on lashings of Epionce Lip Renewal for soft and kissable lips.
  • Step four – Put on some soothing music
  • Step five – Pour a glass of ice cold fizz.
  • Step six – Relax in the warm bath for at least 15 minutes

 

 

All of the above work whether you are going out with a loved one or simply relaxing on your own so go on – treat yourself!

 

Dispelling the myths of Botox anti-wrinkle injections

07 February 2018

 

Botox injections have been around for quite some years now but some mystery still surrounds what they do and don’t do and even social media and glossy magazines confuse the issues.

At Woodford Medical clinic the doctors and nurse prescribers work tirelessly to correct the misapprehensions that their clients sometimes talk to them about and would like to share them with you.

 

Myth no. 1

Botox injections can make lips looks huge and unsightly as seen on some celebrities.

Truth

Botox injections are never used to enhance the size of the lip – however a dermal filler can be used in the lip area and when done professionally should result in a soft and natural enhancement.

Myth no. 2

Once you start having Botox injections you can’t stop otherwise you will look dreadful

Truth

There is nothing addictive about Botox injections other than the enjoyment of looking and feeling your best. When the effects begin to wear off it takes several week to totally disappear. Some lines and wrinkles once “re-educated” never actually reinstate themselves, this applies in particular to negative frown lines which respond really well to anti-wrinkle injections.

Myth no. 3

Botox injections make you look completely frozen and expressionless leaving you look like a plastic doll

Truth

Any reputable practitioner would never advocate the frozen look and clever and professional injecting should only make you look relaxed and refreshed as though you have had a really good holiday.

Myth no. 4

Botox injections can only be used to correct lines in the upper face

Truth

A truly experienced and skilled practitioner can also use these injections in the jowl and jawline to relax the platysmal muscle which pulls the neck and jawline down. This helps to sharpen the jawline, minimises the jowl and helps to keep the neck smooth and elongated.

Myth no. 5

This procedure can be performed by anyone including my local beauty parlour

Truth

At Woodford Medical we only use a tried, tested and licenced solution for our Botox injections.  It is a prescription only drug and therefore should only be injected by a medically qualified practitioner to ensure your safety. Your face deserves the very best treatment so put yourself in the safest of hands at Woodford Medical.

 

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR FOR 2018

01 January 2018

  

 

 

THREE STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO KICK START 2018

We are probably all still recovering from an overload of Christmas pudding, too much alcohol and long hours slumped in front of the television during the festive holidays and have a vague slightly uncomfortable thought in the back of our minds that in the next couple of weeks we need to sort ourselves out.  Well at Woodford Medical we are here to help by giving you a couple of suggestions to make you feel and look better going into 2018.

 

1.    Even out stressed skin with IPL Fotofacials.

 
Rich food, excess alcohol and central heating can all play their part in making our skin look red, uneven in tone and texture, and scattered with little broken capillaries. IPL Photorejuvenation otherwise known as Fotofacials are recognised as the most effective treatment for the reduction of these annoying issues. Our Aesthetic Therapists offer a thorough skin consultation to establish your needs and if suitable will go on to recommend a course of Fotofacials which will restore the natural clear beauty of your skin and diminish the effects of a heavy party season!
 
 
 

2.      Deep cleanse your skin with DermaFrac.

 
The rich foods and excess alcohol that we mentioned above can also affect the condition of our complexions by loading it up with toxins which result in breakouts and a distinct lack-lustre look. By having a course of Dermafrac we can totally cleanse your skin from the outside in and restore its luminosity and glow. Dermafrac uses a combination of therapies including Microdermabrasion, Microneedling and powerful anti-ageing infusions of peptides penetrating deeply into the layers of the skin to give you firmer, smoother and healthier looking skin.
 
 
 

3.    Look smooth and relaxed with Botox anti-wrinkle injections.

 
Often the lead up to Christmas can leave us all looking and feeling a little tired and stressed this can carry over to the new year. If you would like to ease away the signs of a heavy party season then why not put yourselves in the capable hands of our highly experienced doctors or nurse prescribers who can restore the look of calm and tranquillity to your face by easing away the lines and furrows with Botox anti-wrinkle injections. These quick, painless injections can smooth away forehead worry lines, crow’s feet and frown lines and have you breezing into 2018 looking and feeling your best. 



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