Always Rinse After Swimming
Getting your skin wet might irritate your eczema: As moisture evaporates off your skin, it can cause excess moisture loss and leave skin dry and irritated. When you swim in the summer, especially in a pool, rinse off right after you go for a dip , and then apply a moisturizer immediately, Dr. Lee says.
The same advice applies to shower time. Your showers should be warm, as super hot water might dry out your skin and make eczema symptoms look or feel worse. After you hop out, apply your moisturizer before you even completely dry off to lock in as much moisture as possible, adds Dr. Lee.
Top Tips To Avoid An Eczema Flare
Summer can be a particularly difficult time of year for eczema sufferers as the dry air and increased temperatures can take a toll on your skin, often stimulating a vicious flare-up. Thats why its important to really look after your eczema-prone skin during this season, which is why Im here today to go into a little bit more detail about why summer can be such a tricky time and what you can do if you want to prevent a flare-up!
General Advice On Sun Protection
The websites of Cancer Research UK and the British Association of Dermatologists are sources of up-to-date information on sun protection:
The general principles recommended by the British Association of Dermatologists for sun protection are as follows:
Slip on a shirt wear sun protective clothing, hats and sunglasses Seek out the shade between 11.00am and 3:00pm. Keep babies and young children out of direct sunlight Slap on sunscreen. Use high protection SPF with 4-5 UVA stars. Apply 15-30 minutes before going out, and every 2 hours after that.
Sunscreens that offer both UVA and UVB protection are ideal these are sometimes labelled broad spectrum sunscreens.
Sunscreen can be removed unintentionally by sweating, swimming or towel-drying. This is why regular application is recommended with all sunscreens, including those marketed as once-a-day sunscreens.
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Does Your Child Need To See A Doctor About Eczema
Yes. Take your child to see your GP if your child:
- might have eczema for the first time
- is very itchy and uncomfortable
- has eczema thats weeping or bleeding
- has eczema that hasnt improved much after a few days, even though youve been treating it as usual
- is having trouble sleeping because the rash is so itchy
- has painful or eczema that has developed pus
- has eczema and is generally unwell for example, has a fever and/or is sweating, feeding poorly or tired.
You should also take your child to the GP if youre not sure whether the rash is eczema.
If your childs eczema doesnt improve with a combination of medical treatment and management at home, your GP might refer your child to a dermatologist. If the GP thinks your childs eczema might be from allergies, they might also refer you to an allergy and immunology specialist.
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Avoid Contact With Certain Materials
Some fibers, such as wool, nylon, and others, can irritate skin and cause eczema. They also may cause overheating, which also leads to flare-ups.
Dress in breathable materials, such as cotton, and avoid wearing too many layers. Also, eliminate unnecessary layers on your bed and make sure bed linens are made from breathable fabrics as well.
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Practical Advice And Tips
- Buy new sunscreen every year and discard it after one year or before it has become contaminated or separated. Store sunscreen in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight or, if on holiday, always keep it in the shade.
- Apply sunscreen generously for greater effectiveness most people apply too little. Apply all over sun-exposed areas .
- Remember to reapply sunscreen every 2 hours during the day and after swimming, sweating and towel-drying.
- Avoid rubbing in sunscreen, as this may trigger itchiness. Apply it in smooth, downward strokes, as you would apply an emollient.
- Sunscreens come in a variety of formulations: creams, lotions, gels, sticks and sprays. As with emollients, choose the one that suits you the best and does not irritate your skin. Sprays are particularly useful for children.
- Nothing blocks 100% of the suns rays, so you should wear protective clothing and a hat as well as applying sunscreen every 2 hours.
- Carry out a five-day self-patch test on sunscreens before you go on holiday.
- Leave a gap of around 30 minutes between applying an emollient and a sunscreen . Without the application of sunscreen, emollient can cause a frying effect, which can include harmful burning.
Whats Eczema And What Does It Look Like
Unlike heat rash which usually clears up fairly quickly, eczema is a long-term, chronic condition that needs treatment and ongoing management.
It tends to develop in infancy or childhood, and is very common in children. In fact, it affects between 10 and 20 percent of children.
Eczema, which is also known as atopic dermatitis, can and does persist into adulthood for more than 16 million adults. If you first developed eczema in childhood, you may have learned to recognize the hallmarks of an eczema flare-up by now.
But it might be harder for an adult who develops what dermatologists call adult-onset atopic dermatitis. It may also be more challenging for a parent whos not sure whether their child has eczema or just a heat rash.
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What Causes Eczema To Flare Up
Do you wonder what causes eczema to flare up sometimes? Well, it is even hard to narrow down the root cause of this skin disease. However, there are many possible triggers that can lead to a flare-up.
This skin disease is often accompanied by persistent itchiness, redness, inflammation, and dryness. In most cases, this frustrating skin condition can be treated with the help of over-the-counter ointments.
For treating severe cases of eczema, however, it is important to limit the exposure to the potential triggers. In this article, we will provide you with everything you need to know about these triggers.
Tips For Managing Your Eczema
Being diagnosed with eczema does not mean you have to dread certain times of year for the rest of your life. There are many ways to reduce your symptoms by being mindful of your personal triggers and environment. Through trial and error, finding out what substances or temperatures induce eczema flare-ups is a great way to identify situations you should avoid. Documenting your triggers and doing your best to create a trigger-free environment whenever possible can greatly help in the management of eczema flare-ups, no matter the time of year.
In addition to trigger monitoring, here are some other helpful tips for betting controlling eczema:
Buy a humidifier During the cold winter months, the air both inside and outside becomes exceptionally dry. Capable of drying out the outer layer of our skin, this dry weather can cause significant discomfort and irritation for someone living with eczema. Because of this, it is highly recommended that eczema patients use a humidifier in their homes to add some extra moisture into their air and skin. Research has shown that regular use of humidifiers during dry times of the year has had an overall positive impact on eczema flare-ups.
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Turn To Prescription Topical Steroids
The top-line treatments to calm itching, inflammation, and redness are topical steroids, which come in different strength levels in the form of a cream, ointment, lotion, or spray. In the summer, people dont typically like to use a thick, greasy ointment, and we might change the particular formulation to a lighter cream, Dr. Chheda says.
When youre using a topical steroid, its typically only meant to be applied once daily for a few weeks or as needed during an eczema flare, Dr. Chheda explains. Its best to apply it directly after a moisturizer and well before you apply sunscreen so that each has adequate time to penetrate into the skin, she adds.
If youre getting ready for the beach and happened to just apply your moisturizer and topical steroid, thats okayyou should still use sunscreen. Dr. Chheda suggests just waiting around 15 to 30 minutes to allow your skin to absorb the steroid and then applying your sunscreen.
Apply An Emollient Cream Before And After Swimming
Before heading to the pool, cover your eczema-prone baby in an emollient product, such as Mustelas Stelatopia Emollient Balm. Stelatopia Emollient Balm is a fragrance-free, natural product that helps reinforce the skins moisture barrier to lock in much-needed moisture.
When exiting the pool, rinse your baby off with fresh water and pat their skin dry. Next, lather their skin in Stelatopia Emollient Balm to soothe any skin discomfort.
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Does Sun Affect Eczema
Yes, the sun absolutely affects eczema.
According to a 2017 study, exposing skin to the sun can help reduce eczema symptoms. It does this by releasing a compound known as nitric oxide which has anti-inflammatory properties. However, while the sun can give your skin the dose of vitamin D its been craving, its important not to overdo it.
Sun exposure should be kept to a minimum with no more than 1-2 hours being spent in the sun at a time. Overexposure can not only lead to a sunburn and increase the risk of developing skin cancer, but it can also trigger an eczema flare up.
Does Drinking Water Help Eczema
Your Skin Is Thirsty
For people prone to eczema, skin thats too dry can easily become irritated, itchy, and break out in itchy, red patches. You can rehydrate your skin by drinking plenty of water, moisturizing well, especially after showering, and running a humidifier.
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Choose The Right Clothing For Your Baby
Loose-fitting clothing is less likely to trap in the heat that can lead to irritated skin. It is also more comfortable and allows for more flexibility in movement. But on the contrary, tight-fitting clothing can make your baby sweat. And as we mentioned earlier, sweating either further irritates your childs eczema-prone skin or sparks an eczema flare-up.
Additionally, avoid synthetic materials that may irritate your little ones eczema-prone skin, such as polyester, which can cause your baby to sweat more and may result in skin irritation. Choose 100 percent cotton clothing to keep your child cool and prevent itching for eczema-prone skin.
Dressing your baby in loose-fitting, 100 percent cotton clothing helps manage your babys eczema in the summer heat.
Go Organic With Your Make
Earlier I mentioned the importance of choosing an organic, natural moisturiser but this isnt exclusively limited to one product in your skincare routine. From Christmas nights out to New Years Eve, there will be countless occasions where you feel the need to put on make-up or get glammed up.
While theres nothing wrong with this, many beauty products do contain harmful chemicals and artificial nasties that may dry out your skin or block your pores. Thats why you should try and choose a natural alternative organic make-up products generally contain fewer chemicals and will be less likely to irritate your skin. For more ideas, check out great range of natural make-up!
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Will A Humidifier Help With Eczema
A humidifier puts moisture back into the air. Since dry air can aggravate eczema, you can see why some people think a humidifier might help.
But theres no scientific evidence that humidifiers can help people with eczema. And allergy-causing dust mites and bacteria also love to live in warm, moist places.
So although very dry air can make eczema worse, combating this with a humidifier isnt recommended unless you live in a particularly dry or cold place.
Keep Up Your Regular Eczema Skincare Routine
Making the time, even when you are on holidays, to keep to your regular eczema skincare routine is key to keeping flare-ups to a minimum and your childs eczema well managed because this is the way to keep the moisture in the skin, add extra hydration and keep irritants away from the skins surface. A basic daily skincare routine starts with a short, lukewarm bath to remove allergens and bacteria from the skin and add moisture into the skin using a hydrating bath soak. Follow this immediately by applying a thick moisturiser within two minutes of taking your child out of the bath.
Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.
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How To Prevent Heat Rash
The best way to prevent heat rash is to avoid sweating. This may be easier said than done, especially if you live in a hot, humid climate. After all, sweating is your bodys natural way of keeping you cool in warm conditions.
But there are some ways to reduce sweating and reduce the chances of a rash developing.
- Wear loose, lightweight clothing and avoid clothing that thats too tight or that rubs up against your skin.
- Remove sweaty clothes that are close to your skin.
- Limit the use of ointments or heavy moisturizers that can block your pores.
- Try to spend most of your time in the shade or inside an air-conditioned space on hot days.
- Take cool baths or showers on a regular basis.
Control The Heat And Humidity
While eczema itself can sometimes be dry, this skin condition is typically worsened by heat and humidity. Consider keeping your home a bit drier and cooler as a way of managing and preventing flare-ups.
Some people, however, experience flare-ups during the dry winter months. If this is you, using a humidifier can help ease your eczema symptoms.
Body heat can also play a role. Wearing breathable fabrics such as cotton can help heat escape from your body. Taking cool showers after workouts may also help.
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Diagnosing Food Allergy And Eczema Flare
- Your childs doctor may suggest the steps listed below:
- Remove the suspected food or foods from your childs diet for 2 weeks. The eczema should greatly improve.
- Then give your child that food when the eczema is under good control. This is called a challenge.
- If the food is causing flare-ups, the eczema should become itchy and red. The flare-up should occur quickly within 2 hours of eating the food.
- If this occurs, avoid giving this food to your child. Talk to your childs doctor about the need for any food substitutes.
- If the eczema does not flare-up, your child isnt allergic to that food.
Whats The Difference Between Dermatitis And Psoriasis
Psoriasis and dermatitis can appear similar. Both cause patches of red skin. However, in psoriasis, the scales are thick and the edges of those scales are well-defined.
Discuss with your healthcare provider your questions about which type of skin condition you have. You can have more than one skin condition at a time. Treatments for one may not work for the other.
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Find Support To Help You Deal With Stress
Emotional stress can trigger eczema symptoms, and a recent clinical study found that people with eczema have an increased risk of developing depression and anxiety. If your eczema is affecting you, talk to a doctor. Treatments like cognitive behavioural therapy can help manage your response to stress and reduce the impact living with eczema has on your mental health, explains Dr McClymont.
Consider Using Steroid Creams For A Short Period
Steroid creams also known as topical corticosteroids can be used to reduce swelling, redness and itching. If the severity of your flare-up isnt improving with regular emollient use, steroid creams can be useful in the short term as they reduce inflammation in the skin, says Dr McClymont.
You can buy a mild steroid cream, such as hydrocortisone, over the counter from a pharmacy, and stronger creams are available with a prescription from a GP. In rare cases of severe eczema, oral steroid tablets may be considered.
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Resist The Urge To Scratch
Scratching can make eczema worse and eventually lead to dry, leathery and thickened skin. It may also leave you vulnerable to infection since its easier for bacteria to get into cracked skin, says Dr McClymont. Keep kids fingernails short and try putting mittens on their hands at night. A doctor might recommend antihistamines for a short time, as some types are sedating and can help your child sleep.
What Is Eczema What Does It Look And Feel Like
Eczema is a condition that causes your skin to become dry, red, itchy and bumpy. Its one of many types of dermatitis. Eczema damages the skin barrier function . This loss of barrier function makes your skin more sensitive and more prone to infection and dryness.
Eczema doesnt harm your body. It doesnt mean that your skin is dirty or infected, and its not contagious. There are treatments that can help manage your symptoms.
In the word dermatitis, derm means skin and itis means inflammation. The word as a whole means inflammation of the skin. Eczema originates from the Greek word ekzein which means to boil over or break out.
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Doctors Tips For Managing Eczema Flare
- Wed, Aug 18, 2021
Dealing with eczema can be incredibly difficult and unpredictable. Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition that makes your skin red, dry, itchy, cracked and sore.
The condition is more common than you might think, affecting an estimated 1 in every 5 children and up to 3% of adults worldwide.
A flare-up occurs when eczema symptoms worsen, says Dr Rhianna McClymont, Lead GP at Livi. For some people, theres no apparent reason, but individual triggers may include soaps and detergents, cold and dry weather, allergies, or infections.