Skin concerns

Cases of eczema, acne, rosacea, psoriasis and many other skin issues has increased drastically in recent decades.

The exact cause is still not well-defined, but the past decade of research in the microbiome has further established the idea that a loss in bacterial diversity is strongly contributing to a range of skin issues - as well as issues elsewhere in the body.

Most bacteria er allies with the skin.
A few bacteria a pathogenic meaning they cause disease and can cause infections and painful scenarios on the skin. However, of the millions of bacteria known by the scientific field, less than 100 are known to be pathogenic to humans. Most bacteria are in fact friendly and even essential for the skin's health and appearance. It's therefore crucial to maintain a healthy balance between the good bacteria and the pathogens.

An imbalanced microbiome (known as dysbiosis) is problematic as bad bacteria can colonize the skin and outcompete the good bacteria. This leads to skin issues as well as a deterioration of the barrier function which can harm the immune system.

[ Acne ]

Acne vulgaris is currently one of the most common and well-established dermatology conditions, affecting around 90 % of the world’s population at some point in their lifetime. It is usually initiated during puberty by hormonal changes and further exacerbated by genetic factors.

Another factor that contribute to acne-prone skin is an imbalance in the skin microbiome, which allows pathogens (harmful bacteria) to colonize the skin. This means that pathogens start to take up more space and nutrition on the skin and in that way outcompete the otherwise beneficial bacteria in the skin microbiome.

[ Eczema ]

Atopic dermatitis (eczema) is characterized as a chronic inflammatory skin disease with impaired skin barriers, dysfunctional immunological response and frequent skin infections.

It affects up to 20% of children and 10% of adults worldwide.

People with dry, irritated, cracked, and atopic skin often have an imbalance in the skin's microbiome, which allows pathogens (harmful bacteria) to colonize the skin. This means that pathogens start to take up more space and nutrition on the skin and in that way outcompete the otherwise beneficial bacteria in the skin microbiome.

[ Rosacea ]

Rosacea is a chronic infection of the skin in the face which a.o. can lead to redness, pimples and irritation in the facial area. The disease affects 3-5% of people and typically occurs in adulthood between 30-50 years.

People with Rosacea often have a disturbed balance in the skin microbiome allowing pathogens (harmful bacteria) to colonize the skin. This means that pathogens starts to take up more space and nutrition on the skin and in that way outcompete the otherwise beneficial bacteria in the skin microbiome.

[ Intimate concerns ]

At any point in time, it is estimated that roughly 30% of women in the western world suffers from bacterial vaginosis and/or candida vaginosis; it is however not all who experience symptoms. This of course indicates that the vaginal microbiome is sensitive and often struck out of balance. It however also tells that imbalances in the intimate area are common and something we should talk about in an open, factual manner.

The vaginal microbiome is characterized by relatively low diversity compared to elsewhere on the body. It consists primarily of lactobacilli (lactic acid bacteria), especially of the species Lactobacillus crispatus, which maintains the essential, acidic ph-balance (~4.5 – same as many types of wine 😊), thus inhibiting the growth of microorganisms that can cause intimate problems. Even though a high microbial diversity is typically considered an indicator of health, it is opposite in the vaginal microbiome. When the dominating lactobacilli is replaced by other microorganisms it will often be considered a sign of dysbiosis which causes itchiness, irritation, bad odor or elevated levels of discharge.

Despite the low diversity of the vaginal microbiome, the microbiome’s composition will vary significantly from person to person. There are still plenty of unknown variables as to why these variations exist and how they’ve come to be. They are however affected by things such as ethnicity, age, regional origin, and more.