Winter is the time eagerly awaited for festive travels. The joy is interrupted as the season increases PM 2.5 dust. This transforms the morning sky into a hazy white curtain veiled with pollutants that impact respiratory health and skin conditions.
Dr. Boonyapat Limthongkul, dermatologist at Vejthani Hospital, explained that PM 2.5 dust consists of particles smaller than 2.5 micrometers, roughly 1/25th diameter of a human hair. They are tiny, unseen troublemakers floating in the air. These PM 2.5 dust bits come from vehicle exhaust, construction dust, and industrial fumes, covering busy Bangkok streets and quiet countryside areas. They’re not just a blurry sky; they’re invaders causing adverse effects on the respiratory, cardiovascular, and skin health.
The effects of PM 2.5 on the skin can be divided into two types:
- Immediate Effects: PM 2.5 can trigger allergic skin reactions, causing rashes on the face and body or exposed areas. Existing skin conditions like eczema, hives, and psoriasis may also flare up under its touch.
- Long-term Effects: Persistent exposure to PM 2.5 can accelerate skin aging, increasing pigmentation, freckles, and age spots. This occurs as PM 2.5 induces the production of free radicals, causing damage to skin cells.
Protect your skin from PM 2.5 with the following measures:
- Wear protective clothing, including a mask, when going outside, especially in dusty areas. Choose long-sleeved shirts and pants for added protection.
- Avoid staying in areas with high levels of dust for a long time.
- After being exposed to dust, shower and wash your face immediately.
- Apply moisturizer at least twice a day, to keep your skin hydrated and healthy. This will help to protect your skin from dust.
- People at risk, including children, older adults, those with underlying skin conditions, and people with allergies, should take extra precautions to avoid exposure to dust and areas with high dust levels.
See a doctor immediately if you experience any abnormalities in your body, such as rashes, acne, or skin problems. This will ensure prompt treatment so your skin returns to a healthy state.
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