Skin conditions – what’s really going on?

Skin conditions generally seem to be on the rise, with the most common being eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, lichen planus, rosacea as well as skin infections. If you have a visible skin condition you want it gone and will try almost anything to get rid of it, however you don’t want to do anything to make it worse.

The skin is the largest organ in our body, covering your whole body and has many functions including protecting it from the outside environment, stopping the loss of water from the body and water from entering into the body, helps regulate body temperature, and allows your body to feel sensation. For the 1000’s of different skin conditions ( a good resource for all things skin related is dermnet.nz), allopathic medicine has two basic treatments, which address the symptoms (such as inflammation)  but not the underlying cause and have complications with long term use.

Why Skin Treatments Fail?

  • Misdiagnosed & Misdirected Treatment – as many skin conditions have similar characteristics it can often be that applying a treatment based on the condition may make things worse
  • Missing the Cause – A skin condition is a relfection of a deeper imbalance and finding the cause of the skin condition is fundamental to treatment
  • Time – Most conditions of the skin take a long time to manifest and an equally long if not longer time to heal naturally, giving up on treatment too soon is too often seen

Where to start?

  1. Start by treating the skin – if the condition is dry and scally then a cream or lotioncan be applied with cooling and healing herbs, and if the condition is damp and oozing then using clay, compress or tissue salts can be hugely beneficial. Treatment based on the expression of the skin is necessary for choosing the correct topical treatment.
  2. Address the gastrointestinal system (GUT) – these could be allergies or intolerances, malnutrition or nutritional deficiencies, dysbiosis, candida overgrowth or leaky gut, or parasitic infestation. Knowing what is  going wrong in the gut is imperative to treatment.
  3. Nervous System – All skin conditions are exacerbated by stress or our inability to effectively express our anxiety, tension etc. Finding creative ways to express emotion, through the use of mindfulness practices and exercise is helpful. Taking tonic herbs can all be effective in addressing this area.

With this in mind every skin condition is unique, as every person is unique. Taking an eczema cream or pill is too general, we need to see the condition in combination with your constitution and develop a well rounded treatment plan that is specific to you. So come and see us as we specialise in natural skin care.