Role of emollients in the prevention of skin diseases in young children

Epidermis plays an important role in protecting the body from negative environmental influences. The horny layer plays a special role in carrying out these functions. Skin defense mechanisms are multistage and include 5 protective barriers responsible for maintaining the integrity and performing the main functions of the skin. The first one is a microbial barrier - determined by commensal flora which prevents contamination of pathogenic microorganisms; the second one is a physical barrier preventing mechanical skin damage, penetration of allergens and microorganisms; the third one is a chemical barrier achieved by forming pH and components of natural moisturizing factor as well as epidermal lipids; the fourth one - immune barrier - Langerhans cells, tissue basophils, lymphocytes etc.; the fifth is the neurosensory barrier - numerous nerve endings transmitting signals of skin integrity damage and controlling metabolic processes and homeostasis maintenance. Epidermal barrier of newborns and infants is imperfect and differs in its structure and functional activity from that of adults. Children’s skin is prone to excessive dryness, irritation, allergic reactions and inflammation. For young children, it is very important to minimize the risk of these manifestations. Individual selection and use of emollients in the basic care of infants promotes the functional stability of five protective «frontiers» of the epidermal barrier: prevents skin damage when exposed to unfavorable environmental factors, reduces TEWL, supports the normal microbiome, has antipruritic and anti-inflammatory action. Modern emollients restore the hydrolipidic layer of the epidermis and prevent the development of dermatitis and skin infection in children. An important role when choosing an emollient is played by its texture, which can be represented by a lotion, cream, balm, ointment. Chemically, creams, lotions and balms are emulsions, i.e. they consist of two immiscible components - fat (oil) and water. In this case, one of the components is in the other in the form of tiny droplets. Most skin diseases faced by young children are related to the integrity of the epidermis, which is why daily care should be primarily focused on protecting the skin barrier. © 2021, Remedium Group Ltd. All rights reserved.

Tamrazova O.B. 1, 2 , Dubovets N.F. 1, 2 , Tamrazova A.V. 4 , Seleznev S.P.5
Remedium Group Ltd
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  • 1 Department of Dermatovenerology and Cosmetology, Faculty of Continuing Medical Education, Medical Institute, Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia, 6, Miklukho-Maklai St, Moscow, 117198, Russian Federation
  • 2 Bashlyaeva City Children’s Clinical Hospital, Department of Healthcare of Moscow, 28, Geroev Panfilovtsev St, Moscow, 125373, Russian Federation
  • 3 Emergency Department, Bashlyaeva City Children’s Clinical Hospital, Department of Healthcare of Moscow, 28, Geroev Panfilovtsev St, Moscow, 125373, Russian Federation
  • 4 Department of Dermatovenerology and Cosmetology, Central State Medical Academy, 19, Bldg. 1a, Marshal Timoshenko St, Moscow, 121359, Russian Federation
  • 5 Department of Oncology, Moscow Regional Research Clinical Institute named after M.F. Vladimirsky, 61/2, Bldg. 1, Schepkin St, Moscow, 129110, Russian Federation
Ключевые слова
Atopic dermatitis; Children; Emollients; Microbiome; Protective skin barriers; Skin
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