Medical doctors under the aegis of the Nigerian Association of Dermatologists, say they have begun the process of meeting with some lawmakers at the National Assembly in order to formulate laws that will regulate the manufacture and use of bleaching cream.
The Chairman of the Abuja Dermatology Society, Dr. Mohammed Danmallam, who spoke on behalf of NAD, said this during a press conference held in commemoration of the World Skin Health Day in Abuja on Thursday.
According to Punchng, Danmallam said, “Speaking of legislation, what we are trying to do now is to try to talk to the health committees so that we can see how they can help us in formulating laws and one of the ways to do that is that we are currently conducting an investigation in collaboration with some African countries.
We are trying to come out with statistics and facts so that when we sit down with these legislators, we will be able to give them facts that can convince them and so we can move ahead.
Countries of the world have banned a lot of substances for example, hydroquinone which is the most abused chemical component used in bleaching the skin. It is banned in Europe.
It is still allowed in the U.S but only based on prescription. Unfortunately, we live in a country where everything is prescription-free.
As dermatologists, there are conditions we treat. We treat blemishes but we know the dosage, the side effects and when to stop but in our environment, people go out of their way to use it in a manner that is not seen anywhere in the world.”
The chairman said there was no difference between skin toning and bleaching as they both made the skin susceptible to infection. He explained that when people bleach, they kill off matured cells and leave baby cells at the top layer of the skin which are not strong enough to protect the body from infection especially skin cancer.
Danmallam added, “Imagine leaving your house in the hands of your five-year-old child. Of course, you know there will be chaos. That is exactly what happens and that is where the problem starts.”