What is Skin Sensitivity?
Skin sensitivity is clinically characterized by sensory tension, abnormal tingling, burning, stinging, pain and itching sensations. Although it is often temporary, in many individuals it can be accompanied by a visual dermatological response, affecting the individual’s quality of life. However, it is sometimes accompanied by redness and this picture can be observed on the face, scalp and hands. Its incidence is relatively high in Europe and approximately 40% of the population consists of individuals with skin sensitivity, while it can be observed more frequently in women than in men. Since its frequency usually increases in summer, it is thought that sun rays may cause sensitive skin structure. To support this finding, skin sensitivity can be observed more in people who are prone to sunburn compared to those with dark skin. In addition to sunlight, physiological factors such as air pollution, heat, cold, wind, as well as lifestyles such as cosmetics use, diet and alcohol consumption, stress or hormones can stimulate or worsen sensitive skin symptoms.
Do skin sensitivity and atopic skin mean the same thing?
Skin sensitivity may occur in normal individuals, as well as in skin diseases with facial involvement such as atopic dermatitis, psoriasis and rosacea, which may be a skin barrier disorder. In some studies, it has been found that skin sensitivity and epidermis barrier dysfunction are associated. Skin barrier integrity is dependent on fat content, and irregularity in intercellular fats results in disruption of the skin barrier. In sensitive skin, the neutral oil levels decrease and the sphingolipid levels increase and the barrier stability is deteriorated. The weak skin barrier causes the passage of irritating or allergenic substances, causing them to touch free nerve endings and loss of water from the skin. Broken skin barrier is also associated with atopic dermatitis. In some studies, it has been determined that the frequency of atopy increases in individuals with skin sensitivity, and those with skin sensitivity have the capacity to develop allergies 5 times more than normal people. In the light of these data, it was determined that the risk of skin sensitivity increased in atopic individuals, and 80% skin sensitivity in atopic eczema and 64% skin sensitivity in the control group. In other words, skin sensitivity may be a symptom showing an increased risk of atopic dermatitis, while skin sensitivity, which can cause skin barrier disorders, may contribute to the development of atopy if left untreated.
Skin sensitivity and atopic skin differences:
Generally, there are more than 1 million microorganisms in every square centimeter of human skin, including bacteria, fungi, mites and viruses. These microorganisms secrete antimicrobial peptides or free fatty acids that protect the skin from disease-causing microbes to maintain skin health. However, in atopic individuals, these beneficial microorganisms living on the skin decrease together with the barrier disorder, and with the increase of staphylococcus aureus, a deficiency of antimicrobial peptides, permeability to irritating or allergenic substances, and ultimately a disorder in the host immune system occur. The distribution of the skin microbiome and the increase of staphylococci may also play a role in atopic skin sensitivity. These disorders could not be detected only in cultures taken from the forearm, chin, inner surface of the elbow, and back of those with sensitive skin. As a result of these findings, despite the phenotypic or clinical similarity to atopic dermatitis, it is thought that the skin microbiota disorder does not only play a role in skin sensitivity. Moreover, severe eczema lesions accompanying atopics, allergies to the nose, eyes and respiratory tract, as well as positive findings in blood and skin tests are also detected.
How should skin sensitivity be treated and what should be considered?
People with skin sensitivities usually do not have visible skin lesions. Disturbing symptoms include itching, tingling, burning and pain, which greatly impair quality of life. Neurosensory manifestations are often consistent with neuropathic pain symptoms. Skin sensitivity symptoms can be triggered by cosmetics, environmental factors such as sun, heat and wind, and hormonal factors such as menstrual period. In most patients, symptoms begin 1 hour after exposure to the triggering factor, but can last for minutes or even hours. While the symptoms are mostly on the face, they can sometimes occur on the trunk and genitals. Some patients may have widespread redness after the initial symptoms. In some, patchy redness, dry skin structure and peeling develop. It is important to distinguish patients with these findings from other skin diseases such as psoriasis, atopic eczema, seborrheic oily eczema, and rosacea. The treatment of sensitive skin is based on the use of locally mild and non-irritating compounds. It is also important to avoid triggering factors.
It is recommended to use moisturizing and relaxing creams together in the treatment of sensitive skin. h in Japanese patients It has been determined that the use of mild skin cleansers and intense moisturizers in those with mild acne and sensitive skin regresses acne and sensitive skin structure without irritating them. Moreover, commercially non-irritating cosmetics are recommended for use in individuals with sensitive skin with their beneficial moisturizing properties. If all the above measures do not provide sufficient improvement, the patient should be evaluated by professional dermatologists and stronger treatment and further investigations should be performed. Local cortisone creams should be avoided. Because it increases sensitivity. Creams with TRPV1 feature can also be used for sensitive skin.
The new local TRPV1 agonist can be used successfully in sensitive skin structure in a study involving 30 patients. Although calcineurin-suppressing pimecrolimus creams are actually used in atopic eczema, they have been used successfully in women with skin sensitivity in China when applied in 1% cream form because they target TRPV1. In another study, low-grade laser and light treatments were also used successfully in skin sensitivity. It has also been shown that some oral probiotic lactobacilli (Lactobaslius paracasei/NCC2461=ST11) reduce skin sensitivity by regulating the skin barrier function.