Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a chronic inflammatory skin disease, which usually begins in the first years of life.
The exact cause of AD is unknown. However, there are various immunological disorders that may explain the disease.
The main symptom of AD is itching and there is no atopic eczema without itching.
Atopic patients have dry skin that contributes to itching and causes scratching. Synthetics and wool fabrics tend to irritate the skin and cause itching.
There are several factors that can worsen the disease. In particular, wool and synthetic fabrics, exposure to abrasive and aggressive soaps and climatic factors may exacerbate AD. Skin infection in particular with Staphylococcus aureus is also another important factor that keeps the skin irritated.
The right approach requires a combination of multiple actions: Eliminate potential triggers and repair the skin barrier.
When trying to treat AD it is important to carefully review the fabrics we use. Our clothes are in direct contact with our skin all day long and that’s why it’s important to choose the right fabrics for kids with AD. Due to their hygienic properties, natural fibres fabrics are the most suitable choice. Wool fibres are frequently used in clothing but they can irritate sensitive skins. It has been demonstrated that wool fibres irritate the skin of atopic patients, and for this reason wool intolerance was included in the diagnostic criteria for AD in 1980 .
Cotton is the most common fabric recommended for AD patients. Cotton is widely used in clothing due to their natural properties:
– Good resistance to folding
– Better heat circulation
– Easy to dye
– A slow and excellent moisture absorption.
Silk fabrics also help maintain body temperature by reducing sweating and the loss of excessive moisture. However, silk fabrics generally used in clothing are not particularly useful in improving AD as it reduces sweating and can cause discomfort when in direct contact with the skin.
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