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Lea Dow, Owner and President of Athena Allergy and NoNickel.com, was welcomed back to the annual American Contact Dermatitis Society meeting held in March in San Diego, California.  This one day meeting entitled "Charting the Course" featured experts in the field of dermatology covering topics related to allergic contact dermatitis. Lea had previously been a regular exhibitor at these meetings and was excited to have the opportunity to introduce her new line of certified nickel free products to former business associates, dermatologists, and allergists. 

Reaction to these products was overwhelmingly positive with several physicians placing belt orders for themselves!  Finding stylish nickel free belts designed for men, women, teens, and children has been a challenge.  NoNickel.com also offers big and tall sizes, and has been particularly successful with the handmade genuine leather nickel free belts for this market.

Conference goers found NoNickel's nickel free certification particularly noteworthy.  For years, physicians have heard complaints from their patients that the products labeled "hypoallergenic" or "nickel free" did not resolve their nickel allergy symptoms and often made those problems worse.  Some of these products are falsely advertised while other products have a top coating or overlay of a nickel free material.  Once this overlay diminishes, skin is exposed to the nickel in the base metal resulting in allergic reactions. NoNickel tests each of their products to assure there is no nickel in the base metal or any coating.

In addition to exhibiting many styles of belts, a variety of nickel free jewelry was also on display.  NoNickel.com offers nickel free watches, many styles of hypoallergenic earrings, nickel free belt buckles, and even nickel free buttons and rivets for jeans, casual pants, or shorts. 

A product familiar to some of the dermatologists was Nickel Solution™.  This easy-to-use and invaluable kit allows users to test for nickel with Nickel Alert™, then brush on Nickel Guard™ to provide a protective barrier between the nickel and skin. For anyone who is allergic to nickel, being able to test items before purchasing is a significant benefit.  It is equally important to be able to continue to wear priceless items that may contain nickel.  Nickel Solution allows for both, thus making life a little simpler for those dealing with the aggravation of nickel allergy symptoms.

Ms. Dow and her husband, Michael, have over forty-five years combined nickel allergy experience and started their business to help those with nickel allergy live comfortable lives.  Their knowledge and dedication are noted by ACDS members who are pleased to have them available as resources for nickel allergy needs.

ATHENA ALLERGY INTRODUCES INNOVATIVE PRODUCT FOR WOMEN SENSITIVE TO JEWELRY

HUNTERSVILLE, NC - Women who have an allergy or sensitivity to jewelry now have a new option to protect themselves from nickel contact thanks to the launch of an innovative product by Athena Allergy, Inc.  Available through online retailers and skin care specialists, Nickel Solution TM is a unique two-part system that detects nickel in metal items and then protects against a rash, a side effect of nickel contact.

"Research shows that 22 million women develop a rash from wearing jewelry.  Nickel, the culprit responsible for the rash, produces more allergic reactions than all other metals combined," said Lea Dow, President of Athena Allergy.

She continued, "Studies show the increase in ear and body piercing has caused nickel sensitivity to grow at alarming rates.  The problem is no longer female-specific; the rate of affected males is also rising."

An allergy or sensitivity to nickel, a life-long ailment, can cause ACD - allergic contact dermatitis.  The symptoms include a red, itchy rash that may swell.  The skin can also develop welts or hives and cracks or fissures.  The most common sites of nickel-related dermatitis are the earlobes, neck, and wrist, where metal makes skin contact.  

Nickel is widely used because it adds durability to softer metals like gold and is a common component in the base metal of plated items.  As plating wears, even in "nickel-free" items where nickel is still present in the base metal, exposure can occur.

"Nickel Solution is the result of almost four decades of dermatology and allergy expertise," said Ms. Dow.  "We are committed to providing consumers with a user-friendly product that improves their quality of life.  Jewelry choices for nickel sensitive women and men are limited.  This product bridges that gap."  

How is Nickel Solution used?  The kit contains two solutions: Nickel Alert and Nickel Guard. Nickel Alert tests for the presence of nickel - even in trace amounts - in jewelry and other articles, such as watches, buttons, eyeglasses, and belt buckles.  Two drops of Nickel Alert are applied to a cotton swab, and then rubbed on the metal item.  If the cotton swab turns pink, then nickel has been detected.  The test takes less than one minute.  Nickel Guard, the second solution, uses a proprietary clear coating that forms an invisible micro-bond with the metal to protect the user from nickel exposure.  Nickel Guard is brushed on nickel items where metal makes skin contact.  The kit, recommended by dermatologists, is easy to use and will not harm even the most valuable items.

For more information, please contact:       
Lea Dow, President
Athena Allergy
704-947-1917                        
www.athenaallergy.com

BACKGROUND: ATHENA ALLERGY, INC.

 

Athena Allergy, Inc., founded in 2003, has a mission to provide unique products to meet underserved markets and is dedicated to enhancing health and the quality of life through these products. Specifically, Athena Allergy offers Nickel SolutionTM, a unique two-part system that detects nickel in metal items and then protects against a rash, a side effect of nickel contact. This product stands to serve the 22 million women who are not able to wear jewelry due to nickel sensitivity or allergy.

 

The Problem

 

Nickel allergy is a common problem, especially among women.  In the United States, 15% of women are clinically diagnosed with nickel allergy. However, "self-diagnosed" nickel allergic individuals comprise 35-40% of the population, thus leaving this group with limited choices for jewelry.  Until now, no product was commercially available addressing both the need to detect and protect individuals from nickel.

Nickel allergy is growing at alarming rates due to the increase in ear and body piercing, and it is shown to affect men as well as women. Athena Allergy developed Nickel Solution to give consumers with nickel sensitivity or allergy the opportunity to wear jewelry and other items that would otherwise cause an allergic reaction.

Items that may cause a reaction in the nickel-sensitive population include:

Earrings Heirloom jewelry Buttons Silverware

Watches Fine jewelry Belt buckles Eyeglasses

Necklaces Costume jewelry Zippers

Rings Nickel-free jewelry Jean studs

Hypoallergenic jewelry

An allergy or sensitivity to nickel, a life-long ailment, can cause ACD - allergic contact dermatitis. The symptoms include a red, itchy rash that may swell. The skin can also develop welts or hives and cracks or fissures. The most common sites of nickel-related dermatitis are the earlobes, neck, and wrist, where metal makes skin contact.

Nickel is widely used because it adds durability to softer metals like gold and is a common component in the base metal of plated items. As plating wears, even in "nickel-free" items where nickel is still present in the base metal, exposure can occur.

In the past, physicians advised their patients with nickel allergy to coat the offending items with clear nail polish. This supposedly created a buffer between the skin and the nickel-containing items; however, these patients began exhibiting signs of allergic contact dermatitis. It was determined that clear nail polish contained the chemicals toluene, formaldehyde, or dibutyl phthalate - chemicals responsible for creating allergic contact dermatitis in nickel-sensitive individuals. Nickel Solution does not contain any irritants, making it suitable for all individuals with nickel sensitivity or allergy.

The Nickel Solution

The Nickel Solution kit contains two solutions: Nickel AlertTM and Nickel GuardTM. Nickel Alert tests for the presence of nickel - even in trace amounts - in jewelry and other articles. Two drops of Nickel Alert are applied to a cotton swab (included in the kit), and then rubbed on the metal item. If the cotton swab turns pink, then nickel has been detected. The test takes less than one minute.

Nickel Guard, the second solution, uses a proprietary clear coating that forms an invisible micro-bond with the metal to protect the user from nickel exposure. Nickel Guard is brushed on nickel items where metal makes skin contact. Nickel Guard does not contain toluene, formaldehyde, or dibutyl phthalate, which could cause secondary contact dermatitis in nickel-sensitive individuals. The solution, recommended by dermatologists, is easy to use and will not harm even the most valuable items. The Nickel Solution kit is available through online retailers and skin care specialists. Details may be found on the Athena Allergy Web site.

The Visionaries

Athena Allergy is an employee-owned business located in Huntersville, North Carolina. Lea Dow, President and Co-Founder of Athena Allergy, has twenty years of experience working in the dermatology and allergy fields of healthcare. Ms. Dow previously held high-level positions with Ferndale Laboratories of Ferndale, Michigan and Allerderm Laboratories of Phoenix, Arizona where she was responsible for educating physicians and other healthcare providers nationally regarding allergy products and related procedures. These positions have contributed to Ms. Dow's in-depth knowledge of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) and skin allergy diagnostics, treatment, and protection. Ms. Dow's educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with concentration in finance from the University of California, Sonoma (magna cum laude).

Michael Dow, Vice President and Co-Founder of Athena Allergy, has sixteen years of experience in the medical fields of dermatology and allergy. While previously employed with Allerderm Laboratories of Phoenix, Arizona as Product Manager and Director of Marketing, Mr. Dow was responsible for patient and healthcare provider education materials and product development, as well as product packaging. Mr. Dow possesses extensive knowledge of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) and skin allergy diagnostics, treatment, and protection. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of West Florida.

Summary

Athena Allergy, Inc. produces a revolutionary new product, Nickel Solution, which is dedicated to enhancing health and the quality of life of those who suffer from nickel sensitivity or allergy. Nickel Solution is the result of approximately four decades of dermatology and allergy expertise, and is recommended by leading physicians nationwide.

For more information, please contact: Lea Dow, President

Athena Allergy, Inc.

704-947-1917

ldow@athenaallergy.com

www.athenaallergy.com


 






Athena Allergy, Inc., founded in 2003, has a mission to provide unique products to meet underserved markets and is dedicated to enhancing health and the quality of life through these products.  Specifically, Athena Allergy offers Nickel SolutionTM, a unique two-part system that detects nickel in metal items and then protects against a rash, a side effect of nickel contact.  This product stands to serve the 22 million women who are not able to wear jewelry due to nickel sensitivity or allergy.



Athena Allergy, Inc. produces a revolutionary new product, Nickel Solution, which is dedicated to enhancing health and the quality of life of those who suffer from nickel sensitivity or allergy.  Nickel Solution is the result of approximately four decades of dermatology and allergy expertise, and is recommended by leading physicians nationwide.    

Athena Allergy is an employee-owned business located in Huntersville, North Carolina.  Lea Dow, President and Co-Founder of Athena Allergy, has twenty years of experience working in the dermatology and allergy fields of healthcare.  Ms. Dow previously held high-level positions with Ferndale Laboratories of Ferndale, Michigan and Allerderm Laboratories of Phoenix, Arizona where she was responsible for educating physicians and other healthcare providers nationally regarding allergy products and related procedures. 

These positions have contributed to Ms. Dow's in-depth knowledge of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) and skin allergy diagnostics, treatment, and protection.  Ms. Dow's educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics with concentration in finance from the University of California, Sonoma (magna cum laude)

 

Welcome to the home of Nickel Allergy Information.  The goal of this blog is to provide up-to-date, relevant information on nickel allergy and offer potential solutions to "the most common cause of contact dermatitis in the industrial world, particularly affecting females"

All comments are welcomed and appreciated.

 

Kornick R, Zug KA. Nickel. Dermatitis 2008; 19:3-8

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