Ad­vice on sea­sonal skin con­di­tions

Global Times – Metro Beijing - - VISTA -

Edi­tor’s note:

When the weather changes, it is com­mon that some peo­ple’s skin be­comes red, starts peel­ing and itchy rashes ap­pear. Not only are these con­di­tions phys­i­cally un­com­fort­able, but they also af­fect a per­son’s mood and self­con­fi­dence. What causes skin al­ler­gies and how can peo­ple with sen­si­tive skin find re­lief? Metropoli­tan in­ter­viewed Yuan Shan, chair of the der­ma­tol­ogy de­part­ment at Bei­jing United Fam­ily Hospi­tal and Clin­ics (BJU), and she shared some tips for those suf­fer­ing from skin al­ler­gies.

Metropoli­tan: Why are peo­ple with sen­si­tive skin eas­ily af­fected by skin al­ler­gies when there is a tran­si­tion be­tween sea­sons?

Yuan: When sea­sons change, the hu­mid­ity, tem­per­a­ture and UV rays, as well as bac­te­ria, viruses, plant spores and pollen con­tent all change tremen­dously. If one’s skin can­not adapt prop­erly, it is easy for skin ir­ri­ta­tions and al­ler­gies to oc­cur.

Metropoli­tan: How do peo­ple with sen­si­tive skin take pre­ven­ta­tive mea­sures against skin al­ler­gies?

Yuan: First, try to find the source of your al­ler­gies and avoid direct con­tact with it. Sec­ond, pro­tect your skin from ex­po­sure to high tem­per­a­tures and windy, dry en­vi­ron­ments by keep­ing it mois­tur­ized. One should also avoid us­ing hot wa­ter when wash­ing, and avoid skin­care prod­ucts that con­tain al­co­hol. Mild and mois­tur­iz­ing med­i­cal skin­care prod­ucts are pre­ferred. Do not over care for the skin, es­pe­cially with ex­fo­li­a­tion treat­ments. Do not change skin­care prod­ucts fre­quently, es­pe­cially dur­ing pe­ri­ods of sea­sonal tran­si­tional.

Metropoli­tan: Could you ex­plain in de­tail how to use skin­care prod­ucts?

Yuan: Many peo­ple who are into skin­care change prod­ucts when sea­sons change. How­ever, as a der­ma­tol­o­gist, I would not rec­om­mend that. I be­lieve it is bet­ter to stick to one line of prod­ucts and let the skin adapt to it grad­u­ally.

If one needs to change to a new brand, do not change all your skin­care prod­ucts at one time. This way your skin can adapt and you can tell if a spe­cific prod­uct causes your skin to have an al­ler­gic re­ac­tion. Doc­tors sug­gest chang­ing one prod­uct at a time, start­ing with the prod­uct that has the most direct con­tact with your skin.

For ex­am­ple, when switching cos­metic lines, it is rec­om­mended that one should switch foun­da­tions first. Once the skin has ad­justed to the new foun­da­tion, other prod­ucts like pressed pow­der and blush can be changed one at a time.

If some­one has sen­si­tive skin, they should not change skin­care prod­ucts or cos­met­ics with­out rea­son. If you con­tinue to see red skin and ex­pe­ri­ence al­ler­gies such as rashes and flaky skin, med­i­cal treat­ment is re­quired. Metropoli­tan: What food or bev­er­ages should one avoid if ex­pe­ri­enc­ing skin al­ler­gies? Yuan: One should limit the in­take of spicy food and al­co­holic bev­er­ages. Metropoli­tan: What are some of the med­i­cal treat­ments used for skin al­ler­gies? Yuan: Do not use cor­ti­cos­teroid oint­ment with­out pro­fes­sional med­i­cal ad­vice. Oint­ment, oral medicine, med­i­cal care and laser treat­ment – sin­gle or com­bined treat­ments – are the most com­monly used med­i­cal treat­ments for se­ri­ous skin al­ler­gies. Metropoli­tan: Are there any peo­ple who might not be suit­able for such med­i­cal treat­ments? Yuan: Each and ev­ery medicine has side ef­fects. So, peo­ple with hypertension, car­diac dis­ease, gas­tric ul­cer and an im­bal­ance of trace el­e­ments need to clearly state their med­i­cal his­tory and be mon­i­tored closely.

Any treat­ment should be car­ried out un­der the in­struc­tion of a doc­tor, and one should never pre­ma­turely stop a treat­ment with­out con­sult­ing their doc­tor.

Photo: Cour­tesy of BJU

Yuan Shan, chair of the der­ma­tol­ogy de­part­ment at BJU

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