1 in 5 adults in Connacht suffer from skin allergies

Expert dermatologist cautions that naturally derived products can aggravate allergic skin reactions

Lifestyle Reporter

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Lifestyle Reporter

1 in 5 adults in Connacht suffer from skin allergies

Dr. Niki Ralph, Consultant Dermatologist, La Roche-Posay.

New research from sensitive skincare brand La Roche-Posay to mark Skin Health Month 2019 has revealed that more than 1 in 5 (21%) in Connacht, believe they have suffered an allergic skin reaction within the past 12 months and that half (50%) of all adults believe they suffer from above average or hyper-sensitive skin. 

A number of pharmacies throughout Connacht will be inviting consumers to avail of free, in-store skin consultations as part of La Roche-Posay’s 2019 Skin Health Month campaign.

Alarmingly, of all adults surveyed almost 6 in 10 (59%) claim to experience red itchy skin, with just over half (53%) citing redness/inflamed skin and (51%) claiming to have experienced a rash.

Contrary to advice from a leading dermatologist, the study also found that more than 62% adults in Connacht perceive ‘naturally derived treatments’ as being most effective at caring for allergy-prone skin. Furthermore, 17% believe that refraining from using any products is the most appropriate skincare strategy for allergy-prone skin.

However, Consultant Dermatologist, Dr Niki Ralph, La Roche-Posay has advised that the use of naturally derived products as remedies to allergic skin, could, in some cases exacerbate sensitive or allergy-prone skin and lead to symptoms worsening.

“We have seen an increase in the number of naturally derived skincare products coming to market but when it comes to protecting against allergies and maintaining the skin’s barrier function, we would advise people to be mindful of the ingredients that could be causing allergy symptoms to worse," she said.

Furthermore supporting the skin’s protective barrier function or ‘microbiome’ which is made from good and bad bacteria, is important not only for effective management of all allergies, but also for preventing their development. Disruptions to the microbiome can lead to the skin’s bacterial culture breaking-down and the skin becoming more susceptible to allergens. Central to ensuring the skin’s microbiome is properly maintained is daily use of a replenishing moisturiser daily.

Commenting further on the findings, Dr Ralph said: “The level of misconceptions around appropriate solutions for allergy-prone skin is concerning.  The use of unsuitable products on the skin is one of the most common causes of skin sensitivities. There are many skincare myths that often go unchallenged and can lead to unnecessary distress and discomfort.  I welcome research such as this as it helps to drive the necessary awareness to ensure those with sensitive skin types can manage their skincare routines effectively.”

Now in its third year, the ‘Skin Health Month’ initiative aims to empower those living with sensitive skin through awareness and encouraging them to seek advice. The campaign will take place in pharmacies nationwide from 1st – 31st March and consumers are invited to avail of free, in-store skin consultations with trained dermo-advisers who will advise on how best to treat and manage individual sensitive skin concerns.

For more information about La Roche-Posay’s Skin Health Month campaign and participating pharmacies nationwide, please visit: https://www.laroche-posay.ie/ skin-health-month.