Zinc

What is zinc? - Zinc is an essential micronutrient with a multitude of important biological functions. While about 50% of our body’s zinc is in the bones, approximately 6% is contained in the skin [1].

Topical zinc has been used as a therapeutic modality for many years. When applied to the skin, zinc acts like a barrier, stimulates wound healing and is thought also to possess anti-inflammatory and soothing properties.

Pros:

+ May have soothing and anti-inflammatory properties
+ Emollients containing zinc have been shown to improve psoriasis

Zinc has proven effective against psoriasis

In patients with mild-to-moderate psoriasis, an emollient containing 0.25% zinc pyrithione was compared with the emollient cream without zinc pyrithione when used twice daily for a period of 3 months. In that study, both emollients improved the psoriasis, but the zinc-containing emollient was shown to be more effective than the control [2].

Further, zinc oxide ointment applied twice daily for 21 days has been found effective in relieving the inflammation caused by the rubbing of one skin area against another [3], and zinc is known to be effective in other skin conditions such as diaper dermatitis.

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References:

1. Dermatol Res Pract. 2014;2014:709152
2. Acta Dermatovenerol Alp Pannonica Adriat. 2011;20(4):187-90
3. Br J Nurs. 2012 Nov 8-21;21(20):9-10, 12-3

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