Atopic dermatitis is an inflammatory disease of the skin caused by an alteration of the cutaneous barrier function. It is a non contagious disease, rarely of allergic nature and it affects genetically prone subjects.
It has a chronic-relapsing course and tends to alternate periods of improvement to periods of exacerbation and depends on several factors. The duration, frequency and severity of clinical relapses vary from patient to patient.
The disease affects about 15% of the child population and can be divided in 3 groups based on age:
1) Atopic dermatitis in newborn and unweaned babies, aged 2 months to 2 years;
2) Atopic dermatitis in children from age 2 to 8-10
3) Atopic dermatitis in teenagers and adults, age 10 to adulthood.
It has been estimated that 3 % of children with atopic dermatitis will have the disease in their adult life. The hydrolipidic film, made of fat, together with the Horny layer (stratum corneum) has a function of protection from the outside, forming the so-called skin barrier.
A healthy skin barrier has the ability to retain the right amount of water and mineral salts, protecting the body from the aggression of external factors.
The function is similar to that performed by the walls of a house, which must be well built and only have openings where needed.
The skin barrier of someone with atopic dermatitis is like the wall of a house that fails to protect the people inside: missing mortar (fats) in between bricks (cells) and there are holes in the wall that create a dangerous way between the exterior and the interior.
All these lead to:
- Abnormal loss of water and mineral salts with consequent dryness.
- Greater probability for irritant external agents to cause inflammation, redness and itching.
Atopic dermatitis does have three degrees of severity (international SCORAD index):
- Mild atopic dermatitis
- Moderate atopic dermatitis
- Severe atopic dermatitis
Although there is no cure for atopic dermatitis, healing can and does take place spontaneously in many cases.
The ideal goal of any treatment is keeping the patient at the lowest level of the SCORAD index as long as possible and to ensure the acute phases are less pronounced.
To get to this result a daily treatment is necessary, to be had at any age and stage of the disease.
As said the skin of someone who suffers from atopic dermatitis fails to fulfill its function as a barrier. It is therefore necessary to rehydrate the epidermis, cleanse without weakening the hydrolipidic film and "re-seal" the skin from the outside with moisturising creams.
The skin of those suffering from atopic dermatitis, however, never ceases to suffer from the condition, even in periods of remission: it remains a dry and overactive skin; for this reason a daily treatment with gentle cleanser and specific emollients is the only way to:
- Reduce the severity of symptoms by lengthening the period of well being between relapses
- Reduce the intensity of symptoms on a relapse
- Reduce the use of medicines
Thanks to the experience of our experts at Laevia and with the contribution of specialists in the field of dermatology and pediatrics, we have created a line of products for the cosmetic treatment of atopic dermatitis.