Educational Campaign Helps Teens and Their Caregivers Tackle Everyday Challenges of Living with Moderate-to-severe Atopic Dermatitis
Understand AD program brings together a team of experts to help a teen with severe atopic dermatitis (AD) and his parents navigate the disease
Teenagers face many challenges, and growing up with AD can impact the ups and downs and transitions to young adulthood even harder. The new phase of Understand AD deploys a team of experts – a dermatologist, psychotherapist and peer living with severe AD, together known as The Understand AD Squad – into the home of
Like the 400,000 adolescents in the U.S. with uncontrolled moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis, Isaiah has lived with debilitating, burdensome disease symptoms including intense, persistent itching, skin lesions and skin dryness, cracking, redness, crusting and oozing. AD flares are reported to impact school life in 46 percent of 14-17 year-olds with the disease. Teens reported missing an average of 26 days of school per year due to flares.
The Dixon family has been impacted physically and mentally by severe AD. Throughout his life, Isaiah's symptoms have caused frequent hospitalizations, school absences and emotional stress for him and his loved ones.
"Living with severe atopic dermatitis requires constant care. My family has always helped me manage my disease," said Isaiah. "Like many teens with atopic dermatitis, I know that I will need to start taking care of my disease more independently as I get older. The Understand AD Squad expanded my support system and helped me become more independent in managing my atopic dermatitis."
The Understand AD Squad features eczema specialist Dr.
"The Understand AD program aligns with NEA's commitment to educating the public and supporting patients impacted by atopic dermatitis, not only physically, but also emotionally," said
Visit www.UnderstandAD.com to learn more about moderate-to-severe AD, watch The Understand AD Squad films, and download helpful resources for teens with AD, and their caregivers.
About the Understand AD Squad
Mercedes E. Gonzalezis a pediatric dermatologist and Clinical Assistant Professor of Dermatology at the Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicineand at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, where she serves as faculty advisor for the dermatology interest group. As an Understand AD Squad member, Dr. Gonzalez discusses the science behind AD and how teens can address this with their doctor. Christine Triano, MSW, LCSW is a psychotherapist and Director of Mental Health at The Center for Connectionin Pasadena, California. As an Understand AD Squad member, Christine highlights the emotional burden of moderate-to-severe AD and the importance of communication among families who are battling the disease. Tyler Berrymanis a young adult who has lived with severe AD since childhood. As an Understand AD Squad member, Tyler shares the lessons he's learned from managing AD most of his life, and why he's passionate about helping other teens with the disease.
About Understand AD
Understand AD launched in 2016 to empower and give a voice to people living with this devastating disease. Previous programs include A Day in the Life, which provided resources and a short film, written and narrated by
The Understand AD Squad video series is the next phase of this initiative, targeted to adolescents with AD and their caregivers. Through insights from The Understand AD Squad experts, Isaiah and his family, and NEA's Teen Steering Committee, the program shines a light on the everyday burdens that teens with AD and their caregivers face managing the disease, and ways to navigate these struggles.
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