Today, we will look at the hazards of skin bleaching/ lightening.
You are Welcome
The essence of this write up is to ensure that you take charge of your own health.
The skin is the largest organ in the body. The main function of the skin is PROTECTION: it acts a protective barrier for the body.
Hence it protects the body from the harmful effects of the sun, radiation, chemicals and microorganisms. Other functions include the regulation of body temperature, prevention of fluid loss from the body, excretion of toxic substances and providing a mechanical support for the body.
Some of the hazards of skin bleaching are as follows:
1. On using skin lightening soaps or creams, the first thing that may be noted is mild burning. I personally noted this effect while using a ‘particular soap’ that was said to be antiseptic; I always felt myself burning all over. I stopped using the soap immediately. This burning may progress to stinging, redness, and dryness. This may actually blow up into swelling, making crusts on the skin, severe burning and eventual damage of the skin. These preparations may also worsen an already present skin disease.
2. Thinning of the skin: The major function of the skin is PROTECTION as earlier noted. Skin lightening agents gradually thin out the skin thereby removing some layer of protection. In such persons, you may notice visible blood vessels beneath the skin. Thinning of the skin causes poor wound healing especially after a surgery. In such persons, the wound will breakdown even after suturing. The visible blood vessels may easily burst and bleed into the skin with ease.
3. Non uniform colouring; I am sure all of us have noticed this type of colouring especially on the hands. This is because the knuckles particularly remain resilient to the effects of these agents. In some cases, the skin has patches( like maps) of different sizes, colours and shapes. The resultant effect is more unpleasant to the eyes than the original uniformly dark skin; my take.
4. Scars; In some cases, there are scars on the skin. Scars arise from the healing process. Having noted that the skin may get burnt or damaged, there is healing after the burning. Hence there will be scars after the healing.
5. Damage to other organs: This is one of the most dangerous effects of these skin lightening agents. The skin is the largest organ in the body. Any substance applied to the skin is absorbed from the extremely large surface of the whole skin. Granted, the substance may be in minute quantities but the surface area involved and the duration of application ensures that a large quantity is absorbed into the system. The resultant effect is damage to some vital organs especially the kidneys. Others are the liver and the nerves
6. Increased risk of skin cancer; We noted yesterday that the skin pigment melanin is released in reaction to the sun to protect the body from dangerous Ultra violet rays. Reduction of the melanin makes the skin more sensitive or vulnerable to the sun. There is therefore an increased risk of cancers especially skin cancer.
7. Other diseases; Other disease that have been associated with skin lightening agents include Diabetes mellitus, Cushing syndrome. These are particularly caused by steroid containing preparations. The skin is also more vulnerable to microorganisms leading to skin infections,
There may be some other hazards of using skin lightening agents. In view of the numerous dangerous effects, SKIN LIGHTENING MAY NOT BE WORTH IT ON THE LONG RUN
Thanks for reading.
See you tomorrow