Use of AK Series moisturizers

Dr.Yasuhisa Hiraizumi
Managing Director, Hiraizumi Children's Clinic

We're seeing more and more mentions of "the skin's barrier function" on TV and in magazines lately, so more parents are aware that the loss of this barrier function is associated with dry skin and atopic dermatitis. The number of people (including outpatients) coming in for consultations about atopic dermatitis and other forms of dry skin is increasing—to the point that school clinics in certain regions are now reporting that half of their students are suffering from dry skin. Clearly, we are in urgent need of moisturizing skin treatments.

Once the skin's barrier function has been compromised by dryness, it is susceptible to all kinds of external irritation. This in turn triggers inflammation and dermatitis accompanied by redness—which means that if we can properly maintain the barrier function, we can expect to prevent multiple types of dermatitis. In fact, a research team at the National Center for Child Health and Development reported that incidence rates for atopic dermatitis were decreased by 32% when a moisturizer was applied daily for eight months.

At my clinic, we recommend AK Series moisturizers with ceramides. About ten years ago, we did a trial-and-error experiment with all kinds of moisturizers—including commercially-available products—to see which one would be the best for our patients. We eventually decided on the AK Series, which is not only cost effective, but also helps the skin retain moisture long after it's been applied. We gave our patients three products: Vaseline, a heparinoid, and the AK Series. We told them to use the one they liked best and to come back and tell us which one it was. Almost everyone chose the AK Series, so we're able to confidently recommend it today.

The three most important things in skincare are (1) keeping skin clean, (2) moisturizing properly, and (3) protecting from UV damage. For people with normal skin, it's enough to moisturize twice a day—once in the morning and once in the evening after bathing. People with dry skin have to apply moisturizer more often. It comes down to the fact that the barrier function in healthy skin has to protect it around the clock.