they would if they could: When you don't have a job or you're worried about keeping the one you have, chances are you're not going to drop a bunch of cash on cosmetic surgery. And sure enough, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons says business was down in 2009. But that doesn't mean Americans wouldn't go under the knife if they could. Recently, Realself.com, a website where patients discuss cosmetic procedures, did a survey with Harris Interactive. Sixty-nine percent of the nationwide sample of 2,148 adults who were asked in March said they would choose to have cosmetic work if they could afford it. That's up from the 54 percent who said the same thing in November 2009.
taking on teen acne: If you have a teen dealing with acne, and he or she isn't about to listen to your wisdom on the subject, the Florida Society of Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery has some tips that could help.
• Cleanse gently with mild soap and warm water. Washing too often or scrubbing too vigorously can make things worse. But do wash up after you've been sweating.
• A flesh-tinted medicated acne lotion can safely hide blemishes. Loose powder in combination with an oil-free foundation is also good for coverup.
• Look for products labeled "non-comedogenic" or "non-acnegenic," and remember to remove your cosmetics every night.
• Don't be fooled by products claiming to clear up acne overnight; it often takes between four and 12 weeks of treatment to see improvement.
• If your hair is oily, shampoo daily; oil from your hair can clog pores and lead to breakouts. But keep the hair gels and sprays off your face; they can be irritating.
• Don't pick! You'll just make the blemish worse and may cause scarring.
• If you're doing all the right things and not getting results, see a board-certified dermatologist (go to fsdds.org to find one). Added incentive: If you wake up the week of a special occasion with a large, painful blemish, your dermatologist can administer an injection of medicine to ease the pain and help lesions disappear.
babies need dentists, too: The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recently sponsored a survey to see what moms knew about proper oral health care for their children. Answer: not nearly enough. Most respondents — 97 percent — didn't know their children needed to visit a pediatric dentist in the first year of life. But tooth decay can begin right when teeth emerge, typically at 6 months, and often progresses rapidly. And don't go thinking they're "just'' baby teeth. We're talking pain, infection and loss of function. Plus, the group says babies who see a dentist before age 1 rack up bills that are 40 percent lower in the first five years of life than babies who don't go. So get the little one to a pediatric dentist, and if you need help finding one, go to www.aapd.org, where you'll find lots of good tips on protecting tiny teeth.
one more reason to avoid tanning beds: By now, it should come as no surprise that if you hang out in tanning beds enough your skin will age before its time and you might get skin cancer. But here's another reason to stay away: skin infections. Dr. Julie E. Russak, lead author of a study published in the Journal of American Academy of Dermatology and a clinical instructor in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital, swabbed tanning beds at 10 salons on the posh Upper East Side of Manhattan that received top ratings from New York magazine. So, one might fairly assume that these places observe a New York law requiring that beds be disinfected between customers, many of whom lie naked to avoid tan lines. Still, Russak found staph bacteria and the bacteria found in fecal matter. A scratch can let in either, wreaking all kinds of havoc. So if you must be bronze, maybe save your money for a nice spray tan.
Times staff, wires