When the pH value goes up, the skin‘s protective acid mantle breaks down.
Healthy Acid Mantle
- Healthy skin has a slightly acidic value of pH 4.5 to 5.5.
- The acid mantle is an acidic film on the surface of the skin that acts as a barrier to bacteria, fungi and other contaminants.
Weakened Acid Mantle
- Skin pH naturally increases with age (up to pH 6.0).1
- Urine, fecal matter and perspiration may increase skin pH up to pH 8.0.
- Elevated pH is associated with a breakdown of the acid mantle, allowing bacteria to penetrate skin cells and cause IAD.
- Maceration and friction result in excoriation, infection and other complications.
Incontinence Associated Dermatitis
- IAD is an inflammation of the skin due to chronic incontinence and may be accompanied by redness, blistering, erosion and secondary infection.
- IAD accompanied by unrelieved pressure results in a 5-fold increase in pressure ulcer risks.