Being Both Teacher and Student of You

The word “doctor” is derived from the Latin verb “docere” which means to teach (five years of high school and college Latin for the win!). So teaching is LITERALLY in the job description. And boy, do I love to teach! I spent the last seven years as an Assistant Professor of Dermatology imparting my pediatric dermatology wisdom to the next generation of promising dermatologists. So when I decided the time was right for me to open up my own practice, I was heartbroken that I may not get to teach students and residents as much as I used to. But then I realized, what I love even more is the time I spend teaching my patients and their families and their joy of discovering how best to take care of their skin. Because when you know more about how YOUR skin works, when it’s not working and why, and how it can thrive, you’ll be able to anticipate your skin care needs and keep it healthy and happy. Not everyone’s skin functions the same, so why should the way you care for your skin be the same? Let’s work together to find what works for you.

Before I was a teacher, I was a student. And honestly, I still am and will be a student for the rest of my life. My family instilled in me an insatiable curiosity and wonder for the world and all those in it, and it has served me well as a doctor. Because as much as we think we know about the human body, what I’ve realized more than ever over the last few years is that there is ten million times more that we don’t know. It is what makes humans so fascinating and complex. Doctors and scientists like numbers and statistics, formulas, and patterns because it gives us a protocol to follow. And more often than not, it works. But the truth is, it’s not always enough…because sometimes, actually many times, our bodies, our brains, our minds don’t follow the rules. And in large part, our medical systems throughout the world as they exist do not allow for the uniqueness of the individual. It is why my mother was discharged from physical therapy less than a year after a life-threatening brain injury because she wasn’t improving the way the national stroke guidelines dictated how someone should progress in their recovery. Thankfully, my family had the resources to seek help for her outside the proverbial box. And wow, has she thrived in ways no one saw coming! And it has made me even more determined to use the knowledge I have gained through this experience to bring hope and light to those who have lost it. Not by promising miraculous treatments or cures where there may be none. But by promising to truly care FOR them by providing whatever means of support I can — whether it be knowledge, comfort, peace, faith, love, laughter, hope, and/or healing.

Everyone has a story that’s worth telling. And I want to know yours. Share your journey with your skin with me, teach me about your skin, your triumphs, your hardships, your hopes, your dreams, and together, we will learn how we can make it healthy and strong.

Learn more about how educating leads to your empowerment: Empower