Skin conditions, from occasional, to chronic do downright dangerous, can crop up at any age. Always check your skin. If something doesn’t look right, don’t procrastinate. See a dermatologist to identify, pinpoint the underlying cause, and treat your issue. You can assist. Proper preparation for your appointment is key to a productive visit.

1. Make a List
Before your visit, make a list of your concerns. It not only guarantees a smoother and more time-efficient appointment, it also allows your doctor to come up with a more accurate diagnosis.

2. Bring a Family History
If visiting a new dermatologist, make a detailed list highlighting your family history, medications you take and your overall skin concerns. Providing information on past visits to other dermatologists can also be helpful.

3. Bring Photos
Some skin conditions show themselves sporadically. Bringing some photographs of a skin condition when it flares can be a great help to illustrate to your dermatologist the skin condition you’re concerned about.

4. Have Realistic Expectations
Being patient and realistic about your treatment plan is a good place to start when you visit your dermatologist. It often takes time, sometimes weeks, for your skin to become acclimated with new medications and treatments.

5. Ladies: Don’t Wear Makeup
You may rely on some foundation and concealer to get you through the day, but when visiting your dermatologist, it’s a good idea to pass on the makeup. It will allow your physician a closer look at your skin.

6. Remove Your Nail Polish
Dermatologists treat a wide variety of skin conditions and pay close attention to the health of your nails, especially because some skin conditions – cancers, fungus, moles – tend to form on your nail beds.

7. Never Book Treatments on the Same Day of an Event
Some in-office procedures can leave your skin looking inflamed and irritated. Book your appointment a week in advance of any scheduled event you may have (party, family gathering, etc) to ensure your skin looks its very best.