Your skin is the largest organ in your body, and it plays a vital role in your everyday life. Skin works to protect your internal organs by acting as a protective barrier to the outside world. With all that it does for you, it’s important to ensure your skin stays healthy, especially if you’re managing incontinence. Let’s take a look at skin pH, why it’s important how keep your skin balanced and healthy.
What is Skin pH?
pH stands for Potential Hydrogen, and this term is used to describe how acidic or nonacidic (alkaline) something is. The pH scale consists of 14 numbers, where the lower numbers are acidic and the higher numbers are alkaline. The number 7 on this scale is considered neutral, meaning it is not considered acidic nor alkaline.
Our skin is heavily affected by pH levels. Healthy skin is on the more acidic side, ranking between a number 3 and 6 on the pH scale. The acidity is beneficial to your skin as it helps to fight off harmful microbes and anything else that can damage your skin.
The Importance of Skin pH
For those who manage incontinence, maintaining the right skin pH is very important. Frequent contact with urine, feces and bacteria can impact your skin’s pH level, along with temperature changes and humidity.
Your perineal and genital area should sit at a pH level of approximately 6.5, but varies anywhere from 5 to 7 pH. Other areas of your body, like your hands, face and arms, tend to sit somewhere between 4.7 and 5.75 on the pH scale. The lower acidity in this perineal and genital area is what makes your skin prone to breakdown and bacterial infections.
How to Maintain Healthy Skin pH
If you’re changing incontinence products often, you’re likely also washing and cleansing your perineal area at the same time. Although frequent washing of this area may seem like a good idea, exposing your skin to washing with soap and other chemicals too often is not suitable for the pH level.
Incontinence products are often designed to promote good skin health and maintain the right pH level. Wearing briefs that wick away unwanted moisture and washing with incontinence cleansers and creams can help your perineal area stay at the right pH level. It’s also advantageous to change your incontinence product once it is soiled so that the urine and/or feces isn’t staying in contact with this delicate skin area.
Incontinence Products for Good Skin pH
As mentioned above, using a specially formulated incontinence product can help to ensure your skin stays healthy and the pH level is maintained. Here are a few products that work to preserve and care for your skin’s pH. If you have any questions about any of these products, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our Healthwick customer care team. We’re always here to help.
Suitable for heavy incontinence, this brief from MoliCare features active skin protection. The skin-friendly design ensures a pH level 0f 5.5. The super-absorbent core absorbs liquid quickly and wicks away from the skin.
This soothing cream contains moisturizing oils and vitamin E to help maintain a healthy skin balance. This product helps prevent against chaffing and irritation. TENA ProSkin Body Cream has a light, fresh scent, is hydrating and moisturizing, making it a great everyday option for skin health.
These washcloths from Prevail are thick and textured for better cleaning. They are hypoallergenic and enhanced with lotion for skin health. Regular cleaning with an incontinence washcloth will help to neutralize urine, feces, and bacteria which helps to maintain your skin’s natural pH level.
A gentle and effective no-rinse cleanser. This pH balanced product can be used on intact or damaged skin. It also helps to control odours associated with the use of incontinence products.
Like many Tranquility products, these briefs feature the patented “Peach Mat Guarantee”. This design works to neutralize urine pH and maintain good skin health. All-Through-the-Night-Briefs also keep your skin dry, reduce odours, and inhibit the growth of bacteria in the perineal area.
These adult-sized quilted washcloths from NorthShore are a great product to balance your skin’s pH level. NorthShore washcloths are gentle on your skin and pre moistened with
Please note that this article is not medical advice. For more information about how to maintain healthy skin and pH levels, please talk to your healthcare professional. Information sources used to write this article are listed below. If you need more information, please call us Toll Free at 1-877-775-6656.
Sources: GastroJournal.org, Eucerin.com, Healthline.com