Eczema Sos: Getting On Top Of Eczema Flare
Claire Moulds puts you back in control.
When a flare-up strikes it can feel as though youre at the mercy of your eczema, as it becomes increasingly red , itchy and sore, due to inflammation.
Crucially, its vital to nip an eczema flare-up in the bud, before it can progress, to minimise its severity. Left untreated, a flare-up can easily spiral out of control, making it harder to restore your skin to its previous condition.
So, what steps can you take before, during and after a flare-up?
Treatment For Pompholyx From A Gp
The main treatments your GP may recommend to treat the symptoms of pompholyx are similar to those used when treating atopic eczema, including:
- emollients use these all the time and instead of soap to stop your skin becoming dry
- steroid cream this reduces the inflammation and irritation and helps the skin heal
Your GP will probably prescribe a strong steroid cream to use for a short period of time to minimise the risk of steroid side effects.
You may be advised to wear cotton gloves at night to help the cream sink into the skin.
You can also try:
- soaking your hands in a dilute solution of potassium permanganate for 10 to 15 minutes once or twice a day for up to 5 days
- antihistamines to relieve the itching and help you sleep if the itchiness is keeping you awake at night
These treatments are available from pharmacies without a prescription. Your pharmacist can advise whether theyre suitable for you and how you should use them.
Antibiotics may be prescribed if your skin becomes infected.
How To Treat And Prevent An Eczema Flare
Itchy, dry, red, cracked, and sore: there’s no denying that eczema can be a difficult condition to get a handle on. And it’s a common one, too: “Eczema or atopic dermatitis affects 20 percent of children and two percent of adults worldwide,” said Jennifer Crawley, consultant dermatologist and spokesperson for Childs Farm.
Of course, like all skin conditions, there are mild and more extreme cases, but for many eczema sufferers, a flare-up is all part and parcel of dealing with atopic dermatitis. Thankfully, there are things you can do at home to make your flare-up ease quicker and feel less uncomfortable. That’s why we quizzed the very best experts in the business on what causes flare-ups in the first place, plus what you can do to relieve your symptoms.
You May Like: The Best Soap To Use For Eczema
Skin: Condition: Infomation Topical Steroid Creams Or Ointments
These will usually improve the redness and itching of AE when it is active. They come in different strengths and your doctor will advise you on which type needs to be used, where and for how long. Use a fingertip unit to cover an area the size of the front and back of your hand.
Used appropriately topical steroids are very effective and safe to use. Used inappropriately , topical steroids may cause side effects, including thinning of the skin. However insufficient treatment with topical steroids is generally considered by doctors to be more of a problem than overuse.
Weaker topical steroids are usually prescribed for use on the face, breasts, genitals, eyelids and armpits. This is because the skin is much thinner in these sites. Stronger steroids can be used at other sites, especially thicker areas such as hands and feet.
It is recommended that you do not purchase natural herbal creams, as they can cause irritation and allergic reactions. Some so-called natural creams have been shown to contain potent steroids. Other herbal creams have been shown to contain high levels of harmful bacteria including MRSA which may cause skin infections and septicaemia.
Take Vitamin D Supplements
Taking vitamin D supplements in the winter may improve eczema flare-ups, according to a study conducted by Massachusetts General Hospital. The study looked at 100 Mongolian schoolchildren and found that the children treated daily with vitamin D supplements saw a reduction in winter eczema symptoms. While vitamin D supplements are inexpensive, you can also use ultraviolet light to stimulate vitamin D production.
You May Like: Is Citric Acid Bad For Eczema
How To Use Topical Corticosteroids
Do not be afraid to apply the treatment to affected areas to control your eczema.
Unless instructed otherwise by a doctor, follow the directions on the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine.
This will give details of how much to apply.
Most people only have to apply it once a day as theres no evidence theres any benefit to applying it more often.
When using a topical corticosteroid:
- apply your emollient first and ideally wait around 30 minutes until the emollient has soaked into your skin, or apply the corticosteroid at a different time of day
- apply the recommended amount of the topical corticosteroid to the affected area
- continue to use it until 48 hours after the flare-up has cleared so the inflammation under the skin surface is treated
Occasionally, your doctor may suggest using a topical corticosteroid less frequently, but over a longer period of time. This is designed to help prevent flare-ups.
This is sometimes called weekend treatment, where a person who has already gained control of their eczema uses the topical corticosteroid every weekend on the trouble sites to prevent them becoming active again.
How Do Dermatologists Treat Dyshidrotic Eczema
Your dermatologist will create a treatment plan for you to follow at home. This treatment plan will be tailored to your individual needs and may include the following:
Soaks and cool compresses: Medicated soaks and cool compresses can be very effective for drying blisters. You will apply these two to four times a day for 15 minutes at a time.
Corticosteroid that you apply to your skin: After each soak or cool compress, youll likely need to apply a medicated cream or ointment, such as a prescription corticosteroid. This helps to reduce the inflammation and clear the blisters.
Anti-itch medicine: An antihistamine pill or other anti-itch medicine can reduce your discomfort. Anything you can do to reduce scratching is helpful because scratching tends to worsen dyshidrotic eczema. One anti-itch medication that dermatologists frequently include in a treatment plan is pramoxine . Available as a cream or lotion, this medication helps to relieve itch and pain.
Moisturizer or a barrier repair cream: Dyshidrotic eczema can make your skin extremely dry. To reduce dryness and decrease flare-ups, your dermatologist will recommend a moisturizer or barrier repair cream.
Be sure to use the moisturizer or barrier repair cream that your dermatologist recommends
You want to apply it when your skin is still damp after every:
Don’t Miss: How To Make Eczema Bumps Go Away
It All Starts In The Gut
When we eat greasy, fatty foods our bodies take a lot of time to cleanse, filter and absorb what we eat and when that food is not clean, healthy, and colorful-it shows up on our skin!
Being that skin is the LARGEST organ of our body, it takes A LOT for all the bad gunk to exit. And guess where all that bad gunk exits? OUR SKIN!
Thats why we have constipation, diarrhea and all that in between.
So by eating the colorful, healthy, whole nutrition, our bodies have a better time processing, filtering, and absorbing the foods or nutrients.
What Causes An Eczema Flare
Triggers arenât the same for everyone, and there may be a lag between the trigger and the symptoms. Sweat, fabrics , pet dander, hot or cold weather, and harsh soaps are common triggers. Others include:
- Dry skin. It could get scaly, tight, and easy to crack, which can lead to a flare-up.
- Stress. For some people, emotional stress can trigger eczema symptoms. Doctors donât know exactly why this is, but there are ways to help lessen the stress in your life, from mind-body and meditation techniques, to lifestyle changes, to therapy approaches like cognitive behavioral therapy. Talk to your health care provider about how to reduce stress if itâs a trigger for your eczema.
- Irritants. These could include household items like hand and dish soap, laundry detergent, shampoo, body wash, or home cleaners and disinfectants. Juice from fruit, vegetables, and even meats can act as triggers in some people. Other common irritants include:
- Cigarette smoke
- Antibacterial ointment like neomycin and bacitracin
- Cocamidopropyl betaine
- Isothiazolinone (antibacterial in baby wipes and other personal products
You May Like: Why Does My Eczema Flare Up When I Sweat
Common Types Of Eczema On Hands
A few types of eczema can affect your hands, depending on the cause:
- Irritant contact dermatitis happens when you come into contact with something that irritates your skin, like dust or chemicals. You might even get it after washing your hands a lot. These things can cause problems with the protective barrier of your skin, leading to eczema.
- Allergic contact dermatitis is caused by an allergic reaction to something around you. Common causes include nickel, fragrances, rubber, and certain plants.
- Dyshidrotic dermatitis causes itchy, watery blisters, usually on your palms and the sides of your fingers. You can have this along with a different kind of eczema in another spot on your body. It may come in cycles and is most common before age 40. Doctors arenât sure what causes it. But things like metals, allergies, stress, heat, and sweating can make it worse.
Relieving The Symptoms Of Contact Dermatitis
Recommended Reading: Skinfix Eczema+ Foaming Oil Body Wash
How Is Eczema Diagnosed What Tests Are Done
Your healthcare provider will take a close look at your skin. They will look for classic signs of eczema such as a redness and dryness. They will ask about the symptoms youre experiencing.
Usually your healthcare provider will be able to diagnose eczema based on examining your skin. However, when there is doubt, they may perform the following tests:
- An allergy skin test.
- Blood tests to check for causes of the rash that might be unrelated to dermatitis.
- A skin biopsy to distinguish one type of dermatitis from another.
Importance Of Eczema Treatment
There is growing evidence that allergens introduced into the body through the skin can lead to the later development of food allergy, asthma and hay fever. Aggressively treating eczema in children and taking steps to restore normal skin barrier function may lower the risk of future development of these conditions.
Also Check: Eczema Vs Psoriasis On Face
Known Triggers Of Eczema
It takes dedication and perseverance to keep your eczema controlled, so you remain comfortable and trouble-free. Most sufferers work hard to figure out the known triggers. They are often a challenge to detect, and there might be more than one.
Dry Skin: This is often an annual occurrence. In the winter, your homes HVAC system usually sucks the humidity right out of the home if you run a furnace. A woodstove drys out a house even further. Also, winter sports like skiing, snowboarding, and snowmobiling dries and damages your skin making you prone towards a breakout. Depending on where you live, the summer can become arid if you reside in locations like Arizona, New Mexico, or other desert landscapes. If your skin feels tight, then you might deal with a flare up soon.
Irritants: We live in a chemical-based society. Very few products are all natural. Take a few minutes to read the label on your laundry detergent, dishwasher liquid, or shampoo. Half the ingredients you wont be able to pronounce, but you can rest assured they are chemicals. When investigating what causes led to the outbreak, you should focus on chemicals first.
Here are just a few known irritants that you will probably find in your pantry or medicine cabinet?
- What is the difference between Eczema and Psoriasis: pictures, compare.
- How to treat Eczema on eyelid: home remedies, treatment, pictures.
Exploring Eczema On Hands Home Remedies
- What is Dyshidrotic Eczema: causes, treatment, cure and home remedies.
- How to Get rid of hickeys fast: Definition, How to cover, overnight removal.
Before you seek the costly advice of a medical professional, explore DIY treatments. Eczema on hands home remedies might improve your lesions, cracks, bumps, and scales.
Also Check: Best Bath Soap For Eczema
You May Like: What Causes Eczema In Adults
How To Use It
People can buy aloe vera gel in health stores or online, or they can purchase an aloe vera plant and use the gel directly from its leaves.
Individuals should aim to use aloe gel products with few ingredients others can contain preservatives, alcohol, fragrances, and colors, which can irritate sensitive skin. Additionally, alcohol and other drying ingredients could make eczema worse.
However, start with a small amount of gel to check for skin sensitivity, as sometimes, aloe vera can cause burning or stinging. However, it is generally safe and effective for adults and children.
Eczema And Sweat: How To Exercise Without Flare Ups
The relationship betweeneczema and exercise is complicated. On the one hand, exercising lowers your stress levels, boosts your mood, and strengthens your heart and muscles. On the other hand, when you exercise, you sweat, and when you sweat…you trigger eczema flare-ups!
Meet the notorious eczema-sweat conundrum. While the side-effects of sweating make it difficult for an eczema sufferer to stay active, you shouldnt let it stop you! Lets take a look at some simple measures you can take to manage your sweat, so that you can maintain a healthy lifestyle without worsening your skin condition.
Please keep in mind that although these what we discuss in this post can relieve eczema, we are in no way medical professionals. If youre experiencing severe eczema symptoms like an infection, it is best to seek medical advice immediately.
Don’t Miss: Soap For Sensitive Skin Eczema
Eczema Coping Tips Beauty Products
Suggestions for using beauty products include:
- Remember that even hypoallergenic cosmetics can irritate your skin. Whenever possible, keep your face free of make-up.
- Avoid perfumes, fragranced skin lotions and strongly scented shampoos.
- When using a new cosmetic, try testing it first on a small, inconspicuous area of skin such as your forearm. If you experience a reaction, dont use the product again.
What Causes Hand Eczema
Usually the cause is either an externally triggered contact rash or an internally generated skin reaction. Often there is repeated contact with a particular skin irritant that is causing one of these two things to occur. Common skin irritants include:
- Soaps and detergents, especially any with fragrances, as well as liquid soaps
- Water, particularly very hot water with prolonged skin contact and repeated hand washing
- All cleaning supplies
- Petroleum products such as gasoline, oil, grease
- Certain foods such as raw meat or citrus fruits
- Low humidity air, such as in cold weather or contact with dry heat such as fireplaces
Other things could be involved such as a bacterial or fungal infection. Your doctor may want to do tests to determine if a bacterial or fungal infection is present or may want to test you for particular allergies.
Also Check: How To Stop Itchy Scalp Eczema
Recommended Reading: Does Paraffin Wax Help Eczema
Eczema Coping Tips Reducing Skin Irritation
People with eczema have sensitive skin. Irritants such as heat or detergents can easily trigger a bout of eczema.Suggestions for reducing skin irritation include:
- Avoid overheating your skin. Wear several layers of clothing that you can remove, as required, instead of one heavy layer. Dont put too many blankets on your bed and avoid doonas.
- Dont use perfumed bubble bath or bath products labelled medicated.
- Wear soft, smooth materials next to your skin, preferably 100% cotton. Avoid scratchy materials, such as pure wool, polyester or acrylic. You could try a cotton and synthetic mix material this is fine for some people with eczema. Remove labels from clothing.
- Always wear protective gloves when using any type of chemical or detergent. You may want to wear cotton gloves inside rubber or PVC gloves.
- Avoid chlorinated pools. If you have to swim in a chlorinated pool, moisturise your skin well when you get out.
Drink Plenty Of Water
Keeping your body hydrated can help keep your skin hydrated. Drink at least eight glasses of water per day. This will help moisturize your skin. Those eight glasses can include cups of tea, coffee, hot chocolate, or your other favorite warm winter beverage.
Slice up lemons or other citrus fruits and add them to the water for a mild flavor.
You May Like: How To Heal Eczema On Lips