Dr. Najjia Ashraf is a specialist in skin disease and female beautification therapies. She did her MBBS from Karachi and went to Saint Jones Institute for skin disease at Kings College London, where she completed her Masters degree in the year 2007. She has also been delivering lectures on Dermatology at various colleges. She also appears on various Television channels and FM Radio, to give free advice to the patients suffering from skin diseases. She is currently serving at three different hospitals in Karachi.
Dr. Najjia stated that during the winter season, the most common skin problem is dryness of skin, which causes numerous skin ailments or triggers serious complications for those who are already suffering from any skin disease. One major skin problem is Eczema, which creates itchy red spots on the patient’s skin. Continuous scratching turns these red spots into lesions. Many patients use oil on the skin to overcome Eczema, thinking that oil is cheap and will be better for the skin. But before using any oil on such skin disorder, the patient must get the skin examined by a doctor, because the lesions may not be cured by simply using oil, the disease might be caused by some allergy, so first you must ascertain what kind of allergy is it. After proper diagnosis, the treatment becomes easier and more effective. The treatment might involve daily use of tablets, syrups, moisturizing lotions, or creams etc. The doctor may also suggest special methods of skin-washing or bathing.
Actually, many people are reluctant towards taking regular baths during winter, whereby unclean skin may cause Eczema and other skin diseases. In order to keep yourself safe from such diseases, the patient must ensure cleanliness and hygiene. Moisturizing creams and lotions should be used daily, along with comprehensive treatment by a skin specialist.
Eczema is not a short-term skin disease, it may need several months of treatment, before this disease is completely cured. This disease is more severe than ordinary fever, which is usually cured by just one visit to the clinic. Eczema patients need to make several visits to the doctor for examination and treatment. Fungus is another skin ailment caused by lack of cleanliness or insufficient bathing. Fungus is a contagious disease which may be passed on from one family member to another. It spreads very rapidly. Unwashed sweat on the skin may also cause an infectious dry-itch, which spreads very quickly among younger children. Kids are not very conscious of their cleanliness and hygiene. A large number of children sit together and interact daily during schools and sporting activities. If one kid is suffering from an infectious dry itch, he will quickly transfer it to other kids around him and make them suffer for several weeks. Usually, many parents don’t bother to show this ailment to the doctor, and it keeps spreading throughout the school.
Due to excessive air pollution, dusty environment and greasy skin, the young ladies may also develop acne and pimples, which occasionally bleed when you rub your face. Many women who wear head scarfs throughout the day, tend to gather greasiness in their hair. If these women donot shampoo their hair regularly, it can cause more skin problems and affect the thickness, strength and shine of hair.
Other diseases like diabetes, hepatitis and liver disorders cause excessive itching on the skin. Therefore, skin diseases should be clearly diagnosed before starting any treatment. The health of every organ in the body is linked to the other organs. Skin is a very vital part of the body, so we should be very cautious about the health of our skin. Whenever you suspect a skin disease, show it to the doctor immediately. The skin lesions of a diabetic patient take a longer time to heal, and if left untreated, the lesion may expand with time. It usually requires anti-biotic treatment to overcome such disease.
Consuming unfiltered or contaminated water may cause fungus in the body and also causes typhoid, which triggers skin diseases.
I recommend using quality shampoo daily, however people are generally reluctant in shampooing everyday because of the idea that the chemicals may damage the hair. Some glands in our head are producing greasiness very regularly, and the greasiness intensifies in hot weather. If we refrain from shampooing frequently, the grease can damage the hair and head skin. Shampoos are now easily available in the rural areas too.
Dr. Najjia said that; a special kind of clay from Multan is very commonly applied on the skin to get rid of pimples and acne, as it also gives a cooling effect on the body. However, women should be careful while using Multani clay, because so many people are selling it and you cannot be sure whether it is really the curing kind of clay from Multan or not. You might buy fake Multani clay and acquire some new skin ailment.
Over the decades, our body immune systems are weakening and the disease pathogens are becoming stronger, a few decades back, we used to cure fever with one Panadol, whereas now the average patient needs 5-6 tablets before his fever is controlled. The nature of disease is also changing. The objective is to keep the skin and hair clean. Even a soap can clean your hair but a liquid shampoo reduces the chances of breakage of hair. Once a hair is broken it takes several months to grow long again.
Children commonly suffer from skin diseases like Eczema. Women may get Eczema due to the usage of detergents, soaps, bleach or metallic jewelry etc. Usually Eczema comes as a hereditary disease, as many kids may be born with it. Such babies may have very reddish cheeks or red spots on their skin. The parents should immediately take such babies to the doctor for a checkup, and use the right medicine for an extended period of time to completely cure the disease.
Usually after the floods, the people are forced to live in a high-moisture environment, wearing wet clothes most of the time, surrounded by contaminated and polluted waters, while most of the victims are actually drinking the same water. These conditions cause widespread; Fungus, Eczema, and other serious skin disease, which we wanted to prevent from spreading. A few years back, when major floods devastated a large population across Pakistan, we immediately packed and dispatched many skin medicines, and clearly explained the method of use on the packs, so that the local doctors could prevent the spread of skin ailments in the affected regions.