Foley’s Chemist Skincare
Since the business opened in 1909, pharmacists at Foley’s Chemist have always had a special interest in the treatment of skin conditions
We stock a wide range of products for the treatment and management of skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis and acne.
Please call us or fill in your details here for a pharmacist consultation appointment and we will work with you to create a treatment plan.
Some Common Skin Conditions…
Psoriasis is a non-contagious, inflammatory auto-immune disease, and is characterized by a raised red, scaly rash, sometimes with silvery white patches, and commonly affects the scalp, ears, elbows, knees, navel and buttocks. The rash usually has well-defined edges, and is located on the outside of the joints.
The scaly patches, or plaques, are caused by excessive skin production and inflammation. In psoriasis sufferers, skin cell production is faster than the body’s ability to shed it. Typically, the human body’s skin cell cycle from new cell production to flaking off is around 21-28 days. In patients with psoriasis, the cycle only takes 4-6 days, leading to rapid skin cell build up on the surface of the skin, which causes the red, scaly patches .
Psoriasis is a chronic condition, and it recurs throughout a patient’s lifetime. Some people may have long symptom-free periods, while others live with the condition constantly.
Psoriasis is hereditary, and around 10% of the population carries the gene that predisposes them to psoriasis, though not all will develop the condition . Some of the triggers for psoriasis are: – stress – skin injuries – infections, especially strep throat which may trigger guttate psoriasis – certain medications such as antimalarials, betablockers, quinidine, and lithium .
Types and Symptoms of Psoriasis
There are five main types of psoriasis, which present in different ways.
1. Plaque Psoriasis
This is the most common type of psoriasis, and usually appears on the elbows, knees, lower back, and scalp. It presents in the ‘classic’ manner, with raised red patches of skin with defined edges, often with silver/white scaling. These patches can be itchy, and sometimes can crack and bleed.
2. Guttate Psoriasis
This is the second most common type of psoriasis, and often first appears in childhood or adolescence. The rash associated with this type of psoriasis is small, red, separate spots on the skin, usually on the torso or limbs, and the patches are not as thick as those of plaque psoriasis. This type of psoriasis can come on very quickly, often following a respiratory or throat infection or illness, injury to the skin, or as a response to certain drugs such as antimalarials or betablockers .
3. Inverse Psoriasis
This type of psoriasis presents as smooth and shiny red lesions, and appears in skin folds, such as the armpit, the groin area, and under the breasts. This type of psoriasis can cause great discomfort, as it is prone to rubbing and irritation due to its location.
4. Pustular Psoriasis
Pustular psoriasis appears as a rash of white pustules (pus-filled spots) surrounded by areas of reddened skin. The pustules are not contagious or infectious, and the rash is usually limited to small areas, often the hands or feet. This type of psoriasis can come on quite abruptly, often as a response to topical irritation, steroid treatment, overexposure to UV light, or stress .
This is a very rare and extremely inflammatory form of psoriasis that generally affects the whole body. The rash is widespread and very red, often extremely itchy and painful, and with severe exfoliation or flaking of the skin. The skin may look burned, and the patient may suffer from a fluctuating temperature. It can be triggered by a major allergic reaction, severe sunburn, infection, steroid treatment, or alcoholism. While it is very rare, it is extremely dangerous and the patient should seek medical treatment immediately.
Eczema is an extremely common skin condition in Ireland, affecting both children and adults. Eczema, also referred to often as dermatitis or atopic dermatitis, is a ‘recurring, non infectious, inflammatory skin disease in which the skin becomes red, dry, itchy or scaly and may even weep, bleed or crust over’ .
Eczema typically starts in infancy, and while some children outgrow the condition, it may persist into adulthood. It is often associated with other conditions such as asthma and hayfever. The most common form of eczema is atopic eczema.
Symptoms of Atopic Eczema Infants – rash on cheeks, chin, or scalp that may weep or ooze – extreme itchiness
Children – itchy rash in crease of elbow, behind knees, neck, wrists, ankles, buttocks – rashes that become bumpy, or change colour, or become thicker (‘lichenification’).
Adults – rash in crease of elbow, wrists, neck, around eyes – general rash on the body – itchy, dry skin – scaly skin
Eczema is often hereditary, which means that if it runs in your family, you are more likely to develop the condition. Genetic research has linked eczema with an abnormality in the gene that helps to maintain the skin barrier and prevent it from damage, which can make sufferers more susceptible to infection, irritation and inflammation.
Things that are known to exacerbate or trigger eczema:
Many soaps, shampoos, and detergents, especially those that contain alcohol or fragrances – changes in temperature and air quality, such as hot/humid weather, air-conditioning, central heating etc. – stress or anxiety – illnesses – hormonal changes (such as during pregnancy or menstruation) – teething in babies and infants – some research has connected foods often associated with allergies to eczema, such as dairy, eggs, nuts, wheat, and soy .
Acne is a very common skin condition that occurs when sebaceous (oil-producing) glands at the base of hair follicles become clogged, resulting in the development of spots and pimples.
Acne commonly starts in early adolescence, and most young people will be experience mild acne spots during the course of their teenage years. For some however, the condition is more severe, with spots that become large and painful, and scarring may result. Acne is more prevalent among young men than young women, due to increased levels of testosterone, which can make acne worse.
Acne can also develop in adulthood, and some women experience outbreaks during menstruation due to hormonal changes. Whether mild or severe, acne can cause great distress to sufferers. Early intervention and diligent management of the condition is important, especially to minimise the possibility of scarring.
Foley’s Chemist has a range of treatment options available for treatment and management of acne.
The most obvious symptom of acne is spots on the skin, often on the face, back, neck and shoulders, which can be angry, red and painful.
There are different kinds of acne spots: blackheads, which appear on the skin surface as black dots; whiteheads, small spots that remain under the skin; papules, which are small pink bumps on the skin; pustules, larger pus-filled red spots; and nobules, larger spots that are embedded in the skin and usually painful to the touch.
Larger, painful spots that are filled with pus are called cysts, and these are the type of acne spots most likely to cause scarring.