WHY SKINCARE MATTERS
Let me begin by saying that despite what has been discussed, ageing can still be a very positive journey and l for one see it as a privilege as unfortunately there are not many people who make it to their ‘golden years’.
However, when it comes to skincare we do need to stop looking at it as just purely an aesthetic concern and begin to see it as a health issue. Our skin that is vital and fragile will age, and its roles of protection and regeneration will diminish over time.
Due to our ever-growing ageing population, we are realizing how ageing skin can in fact be a real health problem that can complicate and due to co-morbidities can be made complicated.
As health care professionals in a clinical setting, knowledge of skin health is vital to ensure that it is being protected, maintained and if need be treated accordingly.
As individuals, we can help ourselves to ensure that skin health is maintained for as long as possible.
How can this be achieved?
From a clinical perspective, there are evidence-based interventions available to help promote and maintain skin health as individuals age by incorporating a prevention network. This network combines elements of education such as the importance of using sun protection, interventions for early diagnosis and treatment of skin problems such as skin cancer as well as protection against wounds and lesions such as skin tears.
Within this prevention network, there is also the element of providing therapeutic and rehabilitative interventions when skin issues are established such as providing emollient therapy for dry skin to control symptoms and maintain the integrity of the skin.
Fortunately, as individuals, we can incorporate this prevention network into our everyday lives, and it does not need to be made up of an array of complicated or elaborate routines. We need to maintain focus on preventing dry skin in ways such as bathing ourselves in lukewarm water and not hot as this can lead to skin sensitivity. Avoid vigorous rubbing when drying ourselves as this can create friction leading to a possible breakdown in skin integrity and ongoing issues.
Our skin is best protected by washing with pH balanced body and face washers. Daily application of emollient based creams or lighter based if preferred is important to not only alleviate skin dryness but also improve the barrier of the skin and microbial defences. Furthermore, daily sun protection with a broad-spectrum sunscreen is important to prevent skin cancers but also incorporating self-skin assessment is key to ensure early intervention.
Finally, when we talk about skin health it is about approaching it holistically so, therefore, incorporating a well-balanced diet is just as important as what we topically put onto our skin.
What hopefully has been highlighted, albeit only briefly, is not only how wonderful our skin is in all that it does for us, but also the importance of why it must be taken care of and maintained to help achieve the quality of life. This can be achieved in both clinical settings but also as individuals on a day-to-day basis.
The care of ageing skin must change focus from looking at it just from an aesthetic perspective to how the breakdown of structure and function affects the quality of one’s life. And this must start from an early age because if we are to take note of what the World Health Organisation has stated…prevention is far more effective and costs far less than treatment.
This blog post is written by Dora Erdossy, Dermal Educator & Dermal Clinician. With over 25 years’ experience in the Skin Care Industry, Dora Erdossy has worked as a Dermal Clinician and Educator for some of the industry’s largest brands across Australia, USA and Europe. Dora’s passion for education saw her become an educator for dermalogica and The International Dermal Institute in 2001 where she taught in Australia, Vietnam, Fiji and New Zealand. In 2005, Dora moved to the United States where for the next 3 years, she championed the role of Senior Educator at dermalogica’s Los Angeles HQ.⠀