NPN | Skin Conditions


One of the more common skin conditions in the UK is eczema, also known as dermatitis. It affects one in twelve adults, and is more common in children, affecting one in five. Although there are lots of different types of eczema, the one most people experience is atopic eczema, causing the skin to become dry, itchy, red, scaly and cracked. If it’s severe, it can also cause bleeding or weeping.

Although there may not be a cure for eczema, there are many over-the-counter products which can alleviate the symptoms. Your pharmacist will be able to recommend effective treatments such as creams, moisturisers and shampoos which may improve the condition, or if the symptoms are extreme, they can help you arrange a visit to your GP or dermatologist. Either way, your community pharmacy is a great place to start.


Although acne mostly affects teenagers, it can also affect adults, especially women in their twenties and thirties. Usually occurring on the face, shoulders, chest and back, it can vary from mild to severe, and the first port of call should be your pharmacist. Your local healthcare team will be able to advise you on over-the-counter creams, gels and washes which often contain the anti-bacterial agent bezoyl peroxide, which works by reducing the number of bacteria on the skin.

Treatments for mild acne can take a month or more to work, and if you don’t see improvement after this time, it might be helpful to consult your GP, and your pharmacist will suggest booking an appointment with your doctor or dermatologist to discuss your options and potentially get a stronger treatment containing antibiotics.

Warts & Veruccas

Without treatment, warts and veruccas will usually clear with time - however, a stubborn wart can take months and even years to disappear. Although they’re harmless, warts - especially on the hands - can be embarrassing, itchy or sore. A particularly deep verruca may also feel painful, especially when you’re walking on it. In situations like this, seeking treatment from your pharmacist can help you find the best treatment without the need to visit your GP. Your local health team will advise on creams, acid-based ointment, plasters, sprays, or freezing treatments to help you deal with your warts and veruccas without the need for a waiting room.


If you’re suffering from a skin condition, there are ways for your pharmacist to help. Visit your local health team and speak to them about your concerns, and have a conversation about the best treatment for your skin.