Leveraging a better understanding of the skin ecobiology may be a crucial step forward for those struggling with atopic dermatitis.
It may be our largest organ, but for many, the intricacies that make the skin unique remain a mystery. Our own personal defense system, the skin acts as a protective layer against the outside world. As a result, overtime skin is forced to adjust to changing climate and different environments. Increased pollution, UV rays, and medical treatments all play a critical role in weakening the skin, unbalancing its natural defenses, resulting in increased sensitivity and reactivity.
For most of us, these changes are manageable. However, for those suffering from one of the many forms of Dermatitis, better known as eczema, skin health is an ever-present concern, and the effects of these same environmental impacts can be exacerbated.
Eczema, a Lifelong Journey
The Eczema Society of Canada describes dermatitis as a “chronic inflammatory skin condition, characterized by dry skin with red, intensely itchy patches.” Atopic dermatitis (AD) is the most common form of eczema and will impact roughly 17 per cent of Canadians at some point in their lives. A hereditary disorder, AD is often diagnosed at an early age. Like other forms of eczema, it can be identified by itchy, inflamed skin and lesions however as a chronic condition, there is no cure. While varying in duration, atopic dermatitis flare ups are uncomfortable, itchy, sometimes even painful, and can be triggered by unassuming, environmental factors. The good news is that the condition can be effectively managed, and treatment options are available, helping patients achieve extended periods of relief. Unfortunately, the Canadian Dermatology Association notes only 24 per cent of patients with eczema are properly following these recommended treatments.
Scientists themselves are still trying to learn how they can play a more effective role in not only managing flare ups, but finding solutions that will result in long-lasting remission.
Leaning into the science
Leading dermatological brand, Bioderma is dedicated to finding answers for AD patients. Their philosophy is based on a scientific concept known as ecobiology. “Ecobiology is an approach that considers the skin as its own, living ecosystem,” says Maxime Ligot, Medical Director for Bioderma. Ecobiology analyses how cells interact with one another, how the skin evolves and how it adapts to exterior environments: “By focusing on the ecobiology of the skin, we can tailor a solution to the type of problem a patient needs to address,” Max says, “we can address the cause and consequences of a skin disorder, using ingredients naturally present on the skin or very similar to what is naturally present on the skin.”
An atopic patient himself, Max notes that while the first step in the successful management of AD should always be to consult a Certified Dermatologist, skincare can play a critical role in helping patient’s stay comfortable. Finding a cleanser and moisturizer that are specifically designed for atopic skin is important in proactive management of the condition: “Simply put, atopic skin lacks lipids,” Max says. “A lot of mass market products work by degreasing skin. In this case, that skin that is already lacking grease. It’s a non-sense!”
Innovative at your fingertips
Bioderma’s Atoderm range was created with the concept of ecobiology at its core. A collection of hygiene and care products for the face and body, the Atoderm range is specially formulated to help ease symptoms of very dry to atopic-prone skin. The Atoderm Cleansing Oil is an ideal cleanser candidate for those with AD, providing instant hydration for 24-hours. It uses premium ingredients that lean into the ecobiology of the skin: vegetal biolipids to soothe, Vitamin B3 to improve the skin barrier. As a moisturizer, Atoderm’s Intensive Balm uses different biolipids naturally found in the skin to boost the organ’s barriers, the dermatological agent PEA to soothe. Both products also contain the Skin Barrier Therapy Patent, which aims to prevent atopic skin’s secondary infection by targeting the adhesion of bacteria, which can aggravate skin dryness.
Like other skin conditions, the impacts of dermatitis and AD extend far beyond just the surface level symptoms: “Atopic dermatitis has a huge impact on the quality of life of patients,” says Maxime. The impacts a chronic skin condition, like AD, can have on a patient’s self-esteem may be some of the hardest symptoms to navigate. Thankfully, through proper management and the right products, atopic patients can achieve lasting remission, regain control of their skin, and feel confident going about their daily life. As Max notes from his own experience, “I know the type of impact the right products can have.”
Get the right solution for your atopic skin by visiting ShoppersDrugMart.ca.