Dr Shah Hussain
Q: What is the best laser treatment available for getting rid of fine lines? Nida Khawar, Karachi
A: Fine lines can be treated with a pixel laser or a non-ablative erbium laser. There is some scab formation for about three to four days after the pixel laser treatment, which fall off and leave smooth skin behind. It takes about two to three months for collagen remodelling and reduction of fine lines. Non-ablative lasers may not be as effective, but they don't lead to scab formation and may be better for those who don't want any downtime. Radiofrequency skin tightening is another good option to reduce fine lines.
Q: I work out every day so my hair gets a little greasy. Whenever I shampoo, I lose a lot of hair, so I want to avoid washing it every day. Is it okay to leave the hair a little greasy? Ayesha Javed, Lahore
A: It is not good to leave your hair greasy. You should rinse your hair with water and dry it well in case you don't want to shampoo. You may even wash your hair daily with a mild moisturising shampoo – baby shampoos and conditioners are best. Make sure to condition your hair at least twice a week. Do not blow-dry everyday; this will make your hair dry and brittle. Avoid going for chemical treatments such as hair perming or straightening. Have a high-protein diet and take supplements of iron, calcium and zinc to keep your hair healthy.
Q: I have dark elbows and knees. My mother suggested I use a scrub of chickpea flour and malai. Will it help? Can you suggest other options? Hania Samad, Karachi
A: Excessive dryness and friction causes darkening of elbows and knees. You may certainly use a scrub of chickpea flour and malai. Coconut milk is a natural skin moisturiser and can be used as well. You should use a good moisturiser with coconut milk or cocoa butter or shea butter on the dry, dark areas. At bedtime, you could apply a 6 per cent glycolic acid-based cream for about six to eight weeks. Moisturise your skin at least twice a day. You could also go in for a few sessions of diamond peel and phenol peel to get rid of the pigment.
Q: Can hair products cause dandruff? I've noticed that my dandruff problem worsens after using certain products. Umar Khan, Islamabad
A: Dandruff could occur due to a hormonal disturbance or even stress. Infection, injury to scalp, faulty diet and excessive use of hair products like conditioner, hairspray, mousse and gels, too, can also cause dandruff. Wash your hair and scalp frequently – it could be daily or every alternate day, depending on how stubborn your dandruff is. Use a shampoo with zinc pyrythione and ketoconazole. Do not take hot showers. Apply a solution containing salicylic acid to release the flakes. Don't apply oil frequently, as this will aggravate the dandruff. For persistent dandruff, you may have to consult a dermatologist, as you could be suffering from seborrhoeic dermatitis or scalp psoriasis.