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Posted On: 14th Sep 2018

Skin Deep

Kaira Walcott
Kaira spoke to other's struggling with Vitiligo
Anthony Bewley supports the campaign

'I started to develop vitiligo when I was 10. When it did start spreading I got really depressed and anxious about other people and how they felt about me, and I wondered whether it would change how my family and friends thought about me.'

 

Kaira Walcott from Letchworth Garden City explains that vitiligo is where the skin cells attack themselves and stop producing the melanin and pigmentation, so the skin turns white.

 

With Fixers, Kaira is working to educate people about vitiligo and reduce the stigma associated with the skin condition.

 

Kaira told her story on ITV Anglia on Tuesday, 4 October.

 

'I have had some people say to me - does your skin colour come off in the shower?' says 21 year old Kaira.

 

'I have had someone say 'is it contagious?' My son’s got fair hair and someone said to me – is he albino because you’ve got vitiligo?'

 

 

 

 

Her campaign is backed up by Dr Anthony Bewley, a consultant dermatologist from London Barts Hospital.

 

Dr Bewley says: 'All too often patients with vitiligo can go to health care professionals and try to seek some help and they’re told it’s just vitiligo, it’s only your skin, it’s not diabetes, it’s not cancer. And that feels immensely disempowering for patients. So I am really pleased that Kaira has made the effort to make sure that we understand the importance of living with vitiligo.'

 

Kaira adds: 'I would like the public’s perceptions of vitiligo to change from being rather disgusted to be more sympathetic. Because we are still humans with feelings and how they act can affect how we think about ourselves.'

 

To find other resources on this topic, and watch Fixers films, click on the image below.

 

 

Author: Matthew Mills

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