A few facts about pH The pH of
ranges from 1 to 14, with 7 being considered “neutral”. Lower numbers are acidic, while higher levels of
are considered alkaline or non-acidic. You might be surprised to know that
healthy skin has an acidic pH. With more Acid
, your skin fights harmful microbes and damaging free radicals that can accelerate the aging process.
Remember that a neutral pH is 7, above
is alkaline and below
is acidic. For skin, however, the pH range tends to be a bit wider at
, with an acidity range between 4 and 7.
A 2006 study published in the International Journal of Cosmetics
reported that the ideal pH is just below 5.
Newborn babies have a relatively high pH throughout their skin. As babies grow, their pH level drops rapidly. The average skin pH of the
neonates was around 7. In comparison,
adults had an average skin pH of 5.
The pH of the skin varies according to the parts of the body. Areas that are less
exposed, such as the buttocks and genitals, tend to retain their
natural acidity. This is different from your face, chest and hands which tend to be more alkaline. This difference is due to the greater exposure of the posterior skin regions
to the natural environment.
Other things that can affect skin pH include:
Seasonal changes, humidity levels
Antibacterial soaps and gels 4 Soaps
Excessive sun exposure
Washing skin frequently
How to check skin pH
Home test strips
You can determine your skin’s pH yourself with the pH home kit found in
strips Comes in the form of a strip that you apply to your skin and measure.
For best results, purchase a pH kit specifically designed for your skin. Saliva and urine tests can measure your body’s overall pH of
, but they cannot tell you the pH measurement at the surface of your skin.
Dermatologists can also offer liquid pH tests in their practice.
Plus, they can help you with the other
cosmetic and skin-related treatments you’re interested in.
Observation and Estimation
Careful observation can give a general idea of your skin’s pH. Skin with a soft
texture and no dry patches would be considered balanced. Irritation, acne, redness and dry patches can all be signs of
High skin pH tends to be alkaline.
What is the best way to maintain healthy skin and balance skin pH?
with a gentle cleanser What gentle means to you is using a specially formulated commercial facial cleanser or using a natural or herbal product to cleanse your
skin, remember that water can affect your skin, even if only temporarily. The more alkaline the
face wash is, the more likely you are to see skin irritation.
Plus Acidic Cleanser can help fight acne and once your pH drops below 6 the acne will disappear. Unlike
, more alkaline skincare ingredients can help maintain healthy skin in conditions like
eczema and psoriasis.
Using a toner
A toner can help neutralize any residual alkalinity that may be detrimental to your skin’s optimal pH.
Follow with moisturizer. Available in moisturizing oils, lotions, gels and thickening creams.
You may even want to adjust your moisturizer seasonally.
Exfoliator Exfoliating your skin once a week with a gentle
exfoliator can be beneficial to your
Plant acids sometimes used in chemical peels and
microdermabrasion products also help maintain healthy skin.
Discuss these skin care options with a dermatologist to see if they can help even out or tone your skin.
Learn more about how, when and how often to exfoliate.
pH Imbalance: How Your Body Maintains Acid-Alkaline Balance
What Is pH Balance?
Your body’s pH balance, also known as acid-base balance, is when the acid-base level in your blood is at
and your body is functioning at its best.
The human body is wired to maintain a healthy pH balance.
The lungs and kidneys
play a key role in this process. Normal blood pH is 7.40 on a scale of 0 to 14, where 0 is the most acidic and 14 is the most alkaline. The value may vary slightly in both directions.
If your lungs or kidneys fail, the pH of your blood may become unbalanced.
Disturbance of acid-base balance can lead to medical conditions called acidosis and alkalosis. Both conditions require
treatment by a medical professional, not just dietary changes.
How the lungs and kidneys maintain pH balance
The lungs control the body’s pH balance by releasing carbon dioxide.
Carbon dioxide is a weakly acidic compound. It is also a waste product produced when body cells use
Cells release it into your bloodstream, where it travels to your lungs.
When you exhale you expel carbon dioxide and this process also helps regulate your body’s pH balance
by reducing acidity.
The amount of carbon dioxide you breathe out depends on how deep you breathe in or out. Your brain constantly monitors it
to maintain the proper pH balance in your body.
The kidneys help the lungs maintain acid-base balance by excreting acids or bases into the blood.
The kidneys affect acidity
much more slowly than the lungs.
Blood pH imbalance can lead to two conditions: acidosis and alkalosis.
Acidosis occurs when the blood is too acidic or the pH of the blood is below 7.35. Alkalosis occurs when the
blood is too alkaline or the pH of the blood is above 7.
There are different types of acidosis and alkalosis depending on the underlying cause.
When acidosis or alkalosis is caused by lung disease or a problem with exhalation, it is called “breathing”.
When acidosis or alkalosis is caused by a problem with kidney function, it is called
Types of acidosis
Respiratory acidosis is caused by the inability of the lungs to remove enough carbon dioxide during exhalation.
It happens when your lungs are affected by a disease or other disorder.
Some conditions that can cause respiratory acidosis
● Pneumonia (severe)
Respiratory acidosis can also be caused by taking narcotics or sleeping pills. Disorders of the brain and nervous system that cause breathing problems
can also cause respiratory acidosis.
The main symptoms of respiratory acidosis are:
● Extreme drowsiness
If left untreated, respiratory acidosis can worsen and lead to coma or death .
Metabolic acidosis is a buildup of acid in the body that comes from the kidneys. It happens when your body can’t get rid of excess acid or loses too much base.
Specific causes include:
Too little sodium bicarbonate in the blood, a potential complication of severe vomiting or diarrhea
A buildup of ketone bodies due to a lack of insulin, a condition called ketoacidosis, which affects people with diabetes
A buildup of lactic acid, which can be a complication of alcoholism, cancer and seizures
The kidneys fail to release acid into the blood, called renal tubular acidosis
Metabolic acidosis can also be caused by ingestion of certain doses)
Symptoms of metabolic acidosis may include nausea, vomiting and extreme fatigue.
Like respiratory acidosis, metabolic acidosis can lead to coma or death if left untreated.
Types of alkalosis
Respiratory alkalosis occurs when there is too little carbon dioxide in the blood.
Causes of respiratory alkalosis include anxiety-induced hyperventilation, an overdose of aspirin, high fever, and possibly pain.
Symptoms of respiratory alkalosis are muscle cramps and convulsions.
You may also notice tingling
in the fingers, toes and lips, as well as irritability.
Metabolic alkalosis occurs when the level of bicarbonate in the blood is too high or when the body loses too much acid.
This can be caused by prolonged vomiting, excessive use of diuretics, or overactive adrenal glands.
Other conditions that can cause metabolic alkalosis include kidney damage due to severe dehydration or
ingestion of large amounts of baking soda.
The symptoms of metabolic alkalosis are the same as those of respiratory alkalosis above.
How are they diagnosed?
If you think your pH is out of balance, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. In addition to taking your
medical history, your doctor will use various blood and urine tests to determine the underlying cause of your pH
Possible tests include:
Arterial blood gases to check oxygen levels and carbon dioxide and blood pH
Basic metabolome to check kidney function and urine nutrient levels
However, depending on your symptoms and other information collected by your doctor, additional
tests may be performed. If you have diabetes, your glucose and ketone levels may be tested. If you have ingested ethylene glycol or methylene
, you can have an osmolarity test. Treatment for pH
Imbalance Treatment for pH
imbalance will vary greatly depending on whether you are acidotic or alkalotic and what the underlying cause of the
is. The ultimate goal is to bring your pH levels back to a healthy balance.
Treatment for acidosis may include:
Sodium bicarbonate taken orally or intravenously to raise blood pH
Medicines to widen the airways
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) devices to aid breathing
Sodium citrate for renal failure
Insulin and intravenous solutions for ketoacidosis
Treatment of alkalosis may include:
respiratory delay if hyperventilation is the underlying cause
medications to restore nutrient levels such as chloride or potassium