There are so many types of conditions or diseases that could affect the skin. While some are caused by dirty habits like not bathing regularly or properly, some are caused by reactions to things like cream/soap, while some others could be genetic or caused by age. This article discusses the 5 most common skin diseases in Nigeria.
Some of these skin conditions may linger for a while, such as a few days, a week or two, or even a month, without any effort, while some could last for months or even years, defying various remedies.
Here, we would be learning about some of these skin conditions to help identify them and for you to know how to combat them. The best place to visit as soon as you notice anything wrong with your skin is the dermatologist.
Acne is a very common skin condition, affecting people of all ages, but mostly occurring in young people, who may have it till they get old. A 2014 study on the Dermatologic conditions in teenage adolescents in Nigeria found out that acne vulgaris was the most prevalent skin disease among adolescents in Nigeria.
Acne occurs when the hair follicles and pores on your skin are clogged with oil, dead skin, dirt, and so on. This is often caused by hormonal changes. The term acne included pimples, blackheads, cysts, and more. Acne commonly affects the face, but could also affect other parts of the body, like the chest and back.
Treating acne often depends on the individual. Some people stop having acne as soon as they approach their late teens or early 20s, while others could have it well into their 40s and even beyond. But there are creams that one could use to reduce the spread or make it go completely.
Eczema is another common skin condition here in Nigeria. It mostly affects children, although it is not uncommon in adults. One study conducted in 2008 investigated the prevalence of skin diseases in Nigerian children. The study found out that atopic dermatitis (or atopic eczema) was the second-most prevalent skin disorder among Nigerian children.
There is no exact cause of eczema, although it has been linked to genetics. Eczema often causes dry, irritated, which might be discoloured. It mostly appears on the face but may also occur in other parts of the body too. Most children end up outgrowing eczema before they approach their teens. There are creams available that could be used to treat eczema.
Ringworm is caused by a fungal infection that results in patches or raised ‘rings’ around the skin. Ringworm or tinea is a common skin diseases that affects children in Nigeria. It is often painless, although there are times when it could be itchy, tempting the individual to scratch it, this is discouraged. Ringworm can spread from person to person, either by direct contact or by wearing the clothes of an infected person. It can also appear on all parts of the body, including the scalp.
Ringworm treatment includes creams that can be rubbed as well as anti-fungal oral medications.
Psoriasis is a skin condition characterised by the appearance of small, red patches on the skin. These patches can be painful and could appear on almost every part of the body. Psoriasis is caused by the rapid buildup of skin cells. Because the skin cells are not dead before they are replaced, this leads to red, scaly patches.
Vitiligo is a loss of pigmentation, resulting in a whitened patch on the skin. It could affect any part of the body, affecting a large area at once, like the whole of a hand. There could also be loss of hair colour as well. There is currently no cure for vitiligo.