DUBAI, 30th April, 2015 – Dubai Health Authority, DHA, dermatologists have discussed treatment for common skin problems and highlighted the need for residents to be aware of skin problems that they may face due to the harsh summer season.
Information was disseminated via DHA’s #smart_clinic to more than 69,000 followers of the DHA page (DHA_Dubai) on Twitter.
Dr. Anwar Al Hammadi, Director of Dermatology at the DHA, said, “The most common skin problems can be divided into age groups. Among children aged 2 to 12 years its eczema, viral and fungal infections, in teenagers its acne and hormone related problems and in adults the range is wider and includes skin discoloration, viral and fungal infections and hair loss.”
In 2014, the Dubai Dermatology Centre received 19,224 patients, of these 15.9 percent has acne, 9.8 percent had eczema, 8.9 percent had psoriasis and 2.5 have vitiligo. In 2015, to date, the clinic has received 7,130 patients, which is a 30 percent increase compared to the same period last year.
Al Hammadi said, “Eczema is a very common problem we see in children. Hereditary pre-disposition is a major factor in eczema and usually it disappears by the time the child enters his teens but sometimes it lingers on in adulthood.” Al Hammadi said parents should encourage children to use correct medication through positive re-affirmations. The best time to apply moisturisers is after a bath for better absorption, he said.
He said that the number of patients the clinic sees immediately after the summer months is significantly higher than other months because in the UAE summers are harsh and people do not take adequate precautions to protect themselves from the harmful rays of the sun, often causing sun burns and other skin problems.
He said the most common problems in summer include fungal infections, sun burn and skin discoloration, or hyper pigmentation.
Al Hammadi continued, “Sun burn is more common in people with light skin colour, however it still occurs in all skin types. People who get repeated sun burns due to sun exposure, particularly in the peak hours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., are at a higher risk of developing skin cancer. Those with a family history of cancer need to be particularly careful.”
He added that the DHA’s dermatology centre advises all its patients to avoid using artificial tanning beds and sun bathing during the peak summer hours. Tanning can cause premature ageing of skin, pigmentation and skin cancer.
Dr. Amani Al Falasi, Consultant Dermatologist at the DHA’s dermatology centre, said, “It is essential to use sunscreen half an hour before being exposed to the sun, and it should be reapplied every two hours. The best choice is to get the broad spectrum sunscreen protection from UVA and UVB rays with the SPF being 30+ onwards. People should also ensure they are well hydrated during the summer months.”
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