What to know before going to a dermatologist? – Dermatologists are doctors who specialise in conditions involving the skin, hair, and nails. They can identify and treat more than 3,000 conditions. Some of the most common conditions treated by dermatologists are acne, skin cancer, dermatitis, infections, hair loss, and nail problems like spots, discolouration, and separation.
Review your health insurance policy or give a call to your insurer before you book your appointment to understand any costs you might incur. Dermatology visits are included in most insurance plans cover. However, keep in mind that cosmetic procedures are likely not covered. Insurance providers typically provide coverage for treatments for chronic skin conditions like psoriasis, acne, eczema, and cancer. Other skin conditions that are typically covered by insurance include fungal, bacterial, or viral skin infections, rashes, hives, allergies, and warts.
Prepare a review of your medical history beforehand
Before going to a dermatologist, you should make a full list of concerns, pre-existing medical conditions, any medication used, and family history to give your doctor context. Also mention any previous skin diseases you might have experienced, including seasonal ones.
Prepare a list of questions
Going to your dermatologist with a list of questions not only guarantees a smoother and more time-efficient appointment but also helps your doctor to come up with a more accurate diagnosis.
Do not hesitate to bring pictures
In addition to providing your full medical record, your dermatologist would appreciate it if you brought pictures of your skin concern to your appointment.
Depending on what you are seen for, at your dermatology appointment, you might need to undress and put on a gown. For example, if you go for a moles check, you can expect your doctor to examine every part of your body as, unfortunately, cancerous moles can develop in any area of your skin.
Something else you might want to think about is that you will likely need more than one visit to treat and monitor your concern. For example, acne, which is the most common cause of dermatologist visits, is likely to need multiple appointments. This will make sure that your treatment plan is working and that you are achieving the expected results.
Schedule your appointment accordingly
As some procedures might leave your skin looking inflamed and irritated and might need special aftercare, it is better to not schedule your appointment on the same day of an event (party, date, work presentation, etc.).
On the day of your appointment, be sure your skin is clean, and try to avoid wearing makeup. This will give the dermatologist an accurate picture of your skin. You should also avoid nail polish, as your nails can inform your dermatologist about underlying health issues. For example, the shape and the colour of your nails can be a signal of specific deficiencies (like calcium deficiency) that would otherwise remain hidden.