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Sulphur The Healing Mineral for Pets

An article by Dr Adelia Ritchie about some of the ingredients in the Dermagic  Products. The Dermagic range helps your dogs and cats skin conditions with natural fast working relief from itchy and painful symptoms.

We often get questions from our customers about the ingredients in our products.  Today we’re going to talk about one of the most common confusions that surround sulphur-containing compounds.  Some are beneficial, some are vital to the proper functioning of cells, some are caustic and toxic and contribute to acid rain, some are antibiotic medicines.  Today’s blog is just a brief introduction to the vast array of compounds that contain sulphur, so if you still have questions after reading this, please write to us!

What is the difference between Sulphur and Sulphates?

Many treatments for our pet’s skin problems often include harsh chemicals (like sulphates) and steroids, which can make skin conditions worse! DERMagic Skin Care for Animals was created as an alternative to such traditional solutions to alleviate itching and scratching – only using natural and certified organic ingredients.

Sulphur The Healing Mineral for Pets| Mineral for Healings your Dog

Sulphur and sulphates are related compounds but are as different as the free nitrogen in the air we breathe is different from the nitrates in nitric acid.

Sulphur, known as the healing mineral, is toxic to the scabies mite, and is both an antibacterial and potent antifungal… a natural disinfectant. Found in DERMagic’s Skin Rescue Lotion, it provides proven relief from itchy skin and is the only topical product on the market that can reverse a systemic yeast infection, with no harmful side effects. Pure elemental sulphur is a bright yellow crystalline solid.

Sulphur is an essential element for all life, and is widely used in biochemical processes.  Elemental sulphur is non-toxic to animals, including humans, and can be taken internally as a mild laxative.  In metabolic reactions, sulphur compounds serve as both fuels and respiratory (oxygen-replacing) materials for simple organisms. Sulphur in organic form is present in the vitamins biotin and thiamine, the latter being named for the Greek word for sulphur. Sulphur is an important part of many enzymes and in antioxidant molecules like glutathione andthioredoxin. Organically bonded sulphur is a component of all proteins, as the amino acids cysteine and methionine. Disulphide bonds are largely responsible for the mechanical strength and insolubility of the protein keratin, found in outer skin, hair, and feathers, and the element contributes to their pungent odour when burned.

Sulphates, on the other hand, are a type of compound made when elemental sulphur burns in air. The principal sulphur oxides (or sulphates) are obtained by burning sulphur:

S + O2 → SO2 (Sulphur + Oxygen = Sulphur dioxide)

2 SO2 + O2 → 2 SO3 (Sulphur dioxide + more oxygen = Sulphur trioxide.)

When these compounds encounter water (in the air, in the lungs), they form sulphurous or sulphuric acid, highly caustic compounds. Sulphates occur as microscopic particles (aerosols) resulting from fossil fuel and biomass combustion. They increase the acidity of the atmosphere and form acid rain.

When cosmeceutical manufacturers claim their products have no sulphates, they are usually referring to something completely different, i.e., Sodium Laurel Sulphate (and closely related sodium laureth sulphate) or SLS. SLS is mainly used in detergents for laundry with many cleaning applications. SLS is a highly effective surfactant (surface active agent) and is used in any task requiring the removal of oily stains and residues. For example, it is found in higher concentrations with industrial products including engine degreasers, floor cleaners, and car wash soaps.

SLS is found in toothpastes, shampoos, shaving foams, and bubble bath formulations in part for its thickening effect and its ability to create a lather. It has been shown to irritate the skin of the face with prolonged and constant exposure (more than an hour) in young adults.  SLS may worsen skin problems in individuals with chronic skin hypersensitivity, with some people being affected more than others.  In animal studies SLS appears to cause skin and eye irritation.

Most shampoos for pets contain SLS.  DERMagic products do not.

What about Sulpha?

This is another common area of confusion.  “Sulpha drugs” (known as sulphonamides) are a type of antibacterial medication that contains the “sulphonamide” group (sulphur, oxygen and nitrogen). Sulpha allergies in people are common, and medications containing sulphonamides are prescribed carefully. It is important to make a distinction between sulpha drugs and other sulphur-containing drugs and additives, such as sulphates and sulphites, which are chemically unrelated to the sulphonamide group.

Please contact us if you ever have any questions about any of the ingredients in our products.  We love to talk about this!  Meanwhile, here’s wishing you and yours the best of good health!

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