Eczema During Pregnancy: Prevention And Treatment
Perhaps youâve only ever experienced mild eczema at certain times of the year, perhaps youâve never had it all. But now youâre expecting, you can add a massive flare-up to your already long list of pregnancy symptoms? Blame the hormonesâ¦
What is it?
Atopic eczema is a largely hereditary condition, meaning that if any member of your family suffers from it, youâre more likely to yourself. Itâs linked to other conditions, including asthma, hay fever and food allergies, too. Sometimes, in pregnant women, eczema seemingly appears from nowhere. For women who have suffered from eczema pre-pregnancy, more than half will find that expecting a baby makes their eczema much worse. Only around a quarter of sufferers find that pregnancy improves their eczema.
The cause, as ever, is likely to be your pregnancy hormones, which are sending all parts of your body slightly doolally. Of course, various triggers will be partly to blame, but the pregnancy might well be making you more sensitive to them.
If you have not suffered from eczema before, the symptoms range from mild to severe, but at any level they can be quite unpleasant. Mild cases will mean patches of dry, pink or red flaky skin, which can feel very itchy. Severe cases can mean cracked and bleeding skin, which is prone to infection.
Common places for eczema to pop up include the hands and wrists, the backs of the knees and inside the elbows. But it can occur all over the place, including the face and neck yuk.
Moderate Your Shower Temperature
It undoubtedly feels relaxing to have a hot bath during your pregnancy days. It reduces your body aches and helps you rejuvenate. But exposing your skin to hot water can be harmful to your skin, especially if you are suffering from eczema. So, moderate the temperature and take shower with relatively lukewarm water.
Recommended Reading: Best Washing Detergent For Eczema
Skinceuticals Triple Lipid Restore : : 2 $136
This is a thicker cream that delivers ultimate hydration to skin to smooth and improve the health of your skin barrier, Dr. Libby explains. Plus, she recommends it because the formula replenishes the ceramides and healthy fats of the skin in the optimal ratio to help repair and restore the skins moisture barrier.
Also Check: Prescription Eczema Cream For Kids
What Causes Discoid Eczema
The cause of discoid eczema is unknown, although it is often accompanied by dry skin and is thought to be triggered by irritation of the skin.
Discoid eczema tends to affect adults and is rare in children. It is more common among men aged from 50 to 70 and women in their teens or twenties.
Some people with discoid eczema may also have other types of eczema, such as atopic eczema.
Read more about the causes of discoid eczema.
Weeping Eczema After Stopping Steroid Creams
While primary and secondary weeping eczema are well-known in the medical world, some people can still experience weeping eczema when they first stop using steroid creams. Why is this?
One doctor found that the steroids in the cream itself, indirectly kills Staph A, making it near to impossible for Staph A to colonize the area where you put your steroid cream.
In other words, when you use a steroid cream, the bacteria doesnt like it and leaves the area alone. So when you stop using it the bacteria comes back, sets up camp, and you experience weeping! This is especially the case if you have open eczema areas, where a higher concentration of Staph is likely to be found.
You May Like: Can Eczema Go Away Completely
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.
What Kinds Of Products Should I Use When Bathing
You should always look for skin products that are unscented, fragrance-free and dye-free so that you dont further irritate your skin.
Try to avoid waterless, antibacterial cleansers, which often contain ingredients like alcohol and solvents that are very hard on your skin . Remember not to scrub your skin while cleansing and to gently pat your skin dry when youre done. As always, moisturize your skin immediately afterward.
Also Check: Does Sea Water Help Eczema
Bacterial Treatments For Eczema
While scientists still dont know exactly what causes atopic dermatitis, they have been exploring the role that the microbiome may play in the disease. People with eczema have unusually high amounts of harmful bacteria on their skin and lower than normal levels of good bacteria.
A potential new approach to treating eczema involves using good bacteria to kill pathogenic bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus, which is commonly found in large quantities on the skin of people with eczema and is known to cause symptom flare-ups. Though such treatments are not yet available to the public, preliminary research is encouraging.
An early study published in JCI Insight found that more than half of a small group of adults treated with Roseomonas mucosa in a spray form experienced improvement in their eczema, with some reporting that they needed less steroid cream to manage their symptoms.
What Are Jak Inhibitors
Janus kinase inhibitors are part of a class of medicines called disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs . These drugs curb your immune system. Doctors prescribe JAK inhibitors for inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis. The FDA began approving JAK inhibitors to treat atopic dermatitis in January 2022.
Don’t Miss: Live Clean Baby Eczema Cream
Ways To Relieve Itchy Eczema At Home
Apply a cool compress to itchy skin. To use this technique, you:
Telling your child to stop scratching itchy skin rarely works.
Eczema is just too itchy, and telling your child to stop scratching can feel stressful. Stress often makes eczema worse.
Add colloidal oatmeal to your childs bath. Youll find colloidal oatmeal at many places that sell health and beauty products. When you add this to your childs bath, it helps relieve the dry, itchy skin.
When using colloidal oatmeal, dermatologists recommend:
Dont let your child eat the finely ground oatmeal.
Colloidal oatmeal makes the bath very slippery, so take care to prevent a slip or fall.
Soak in a bath and smear on ointment. After letting your child soak in a lukewarm bath, smear a thick layer of moisturizing ointment on all of your childs skin. When the skin is very itchy, using an eczema friendly ointment like petroleum jelly provides more relief than a cream or lotion.
What Do I Need To Know About Oral Or Topical Antibiotics Used To Treat Eczema
- Topical antibiotics are used for small, localized bacterial infections oral antibiotics are used for more extensive or severe skin infections.
- Topical antibiotics are sometimes not recommended, as they can be associated with contact dermatitis and may contribute to antibiotic drug resistance.
- Mupirocin is a prescription topical antibiotic usually applied to the affected area three times per day for 1-2 weeks.
- Bleach baths may also be effective in treating and preventing infection.
Also Check: How To Get Rid Of Eczema On Eyelids
When To Seek Medical Advice
You should see your GP or pharmacist if you think you may have discoid eczema, as the condition can take a long time to improve without treatment and it may keep recurring.
You should also seek medical advice if you think your skin may be infected, as you may need to use antibiotic cream or, in very severe cases, take antibiotics tablets.
- oral corticosteroids for severe flare-ups
- antibiotics for infected eczema
- antihistamines for severe itching
There are many different preparations for each type of medication and it is worth taking time with your pharmacist to find the best one for you.
A range of emollient products, soap substitutes and some topical corticosteroids can be bought from pharmacies without a prescription. Some of them are cheaper to buy this way than with a prescription.
Ask your pharmacist for advice on the different products and how to use them. See your GP if your eczema does not improve after using an over-the-counter preparation.
Try To Reduce The Damage From Scratching
Eczema is often itchy, and it can be very tempting to scratch the affected areas of skin.
But scratching usually damages the skin, which can itself cause more eczema to occur.
The skin eventually thickens into leathery areas as a result of chronic scratching.
Deep scratching also causes bleeding and increases the risk of your skin becoming infected or scarred.
Try to reduce scratching whenever possible. You could try gently rubbing your skin with your fingers instead.
If your baby has atopic eczema, anti-scratch mittens may stop them scratching their skin.
Keep your nails short and clean to minimise damage to the skin from unintentional scratching.
Keep your skin covered with light clothing to reduce damage from habitual scratching.
Read Also: Best Cream For Eczema And Dermatitis
What Questions Might My Healthcare Provider Ask To Diagnose Eczema
The conversation with your healthcare provider will need to cover a lot of information. Be sure to be specific about your symptoms.
- Where is your eczema located?
- What have you used to try to treat your eczema?
- What medical conditions do you have? Allergies? Asthma?
- Is there a history of eczema in your family?
- How long have you had symptoms of eczema?
- Do you take hot showers?
- Is there anything that makes your symptoms worse?
- Have you noticed that something triggers or worsens your eczema? Soaps? Detergents? Cigarette smoke?
- Is there so much itchiness that you have trouble sleeping? Working? Living your normal life?
How Do Biologics Work
The immune system produces a certain type of protein chemical messenger called an interleukin, abbreviated IL, that helps our body fight off harmful viruses and bacteria. But for people with inflammatory diseases like atopic dermatitis, the immune system overreacts and triggers the release of certain ILs resulting in inflammation. This chronic inflammation leads to itchy, red patches on the skin and other symptoms common to many types of eczema.
Biologics for atopic dermatitis block specific ILs from binding to their cell surface receptors, which stops or limits that part of the immune system response. A calmer immune system means lower or less severe inflammation and therefore fewer symptoms of atopic dermatitis.
Recommended Reading: Neosporin Eczema Essentials Anti Itch Cream Cvs
What Else Is Happening At Johns Hopkins Today
We go out of our way to provide the comprehensive care our patients with eczema need. On a case-by-case basis, we communicate with one another whether in allergy, dermatology, psychology or infectious disease to put together the best course of treatment for each child.We are optimistic that future therapies and approaches to care for those with even severe eczema are going to be greatly improved with more research and that the creation of the Eczema Day Treatment Unit will help us conduct cutting edge research and answer questions we face every day seeing and treating patients.
Ad May Increase Your Risk For Some Eye Diseases
It seems that the more severe the AD, the higher your risk of developing certain eye diseases. At least, thats the finding from a 15-year study run in Denmark.
During this study, researchers looked at the medical records of adults in Denmark. In doing so, they discovered that those with AD had a higher risk of developing an eye infection called conjunctivitis, also known as pink eye.
Pink eye : Signs that you may have pink eye include:
Pink color to your eye
Watery, itchy eyes
Eyes sensitive to light
Wet, sticky or dry, crusty eyes
In this study, adults with AD also had a higher risk of developing the following eye diseases.
Inflamed cornea : This eye disease occurs when the eye becomes infected or inflamed. Warning signs include your eyes feeling:
Painful or uncomfortable
When caught early and properly treated, keratitis can often be cured.
Cornea changes shape
The cornea of the eye is normally round, as shown here.
Frequently rubbing your eyes can change the shape of your cornea. As the cornea starts to change shape, it begins to bulge. It becomes cone-shaped. This change in shape can cause the following warning signs:
- Sensitivity to light, especially when driving at night
- Constantly changing prescription for eyeglasses or contacts
Signs of keratoconus
If you have any warning signs of keratoconus, ask your eye doctor to take a close look at the shape of your cornea.
Don’t Miss: Cetaphil Pro Eczema Body Wash
What Do I Need To Know About Biologics Used To Treat Eczema
- Dupixent is administered by injection every 14 days.
- Dupixent is approved for adults and children ages 6 months and older to uncontrolled moderate-to-severe eczema.
- Dupixent can be used with or without topical corticosteroid creams or ointments.
- Biologic medications are expensive and are not always covered by insurance.
- There is a risk of eye-related side effects.
How Often Should You Bathe A Baby With Eczema
In this article, we are going to explore the question: How often should you bathe a baby with eczema. Its a good question because there is no one right answer. In this article, I will discuss what I do personally and other strategies to make the most out of bathing time. This has helped me to control eczema that my child was suffering from.
Recommended Reading: Que Es Eczema En Las Manos
Recommended Reading: The Best Hand Soap For Eczema
Can I Put Hydrocortisone On Baby Face
Hydrocortisone should only be used on babies under the supervision of a doctor. Fortunately, there are a number of skin care products that dont contain hydrocortisone, such as Mustelas Stelatopia line, designed with your little ones delicate skin in mind and specifically formulated to help treat and prevent eczema.
Can Aloe Vera Make Eczema Worse
Can aloe vera make eczema worse? Aloe vera wont likely make eczema worse unless youre allergic to it. The greater risk is relying on aloe for eczema treatment when it may not actually work. Aloe vera gel could temporarily alleviate feelings of burning, but it cant treat the underlying causes of your eczema rashes.
Dont Miss: Best Tinted Moisturizer For Eczema Skin
Read Also: Can Poison Ivy Trigger Eczema
What Is The Difference Between Lotions Creams And Ointments
Lotions, creams and ointments are all moisturizers . However, they have different water content. Lotions have the most water so absorb easily into the skin however, lotions dont provide enough moisture to the skin to be used in toddler or baby eczema. Ointments have the most moisturizing quality but can be greasy on the skin and can clog up washing machines if clothing has lots of ointment on it, soak in hot water before washing.
- Creams: Sorbolene, Cetamacrogel, E45
Also Check: What Helps Clear Up Eczema
Eczema Coping Tips Avoid Changes In Temperature
Abrupt temperature and humidity changes can sometimes irritate the skin for example, going in and out of air-conditioned buildings on hot days or heated buildings on cold days.Hard physical activity or exercise that makes you sweat heavily can also trigger the itch of eczema.Suggestions include:
- In winter, dont overheat your house. Dress warmly when going outdoors and remove the extra layers as soon as you return.
- In summer, dont over cool your house. Air conditioners can dry out the air and irritate your skin.
- Avoid hard physical activity in hot weather. For example, do your gardening first thing in the morning, or in the evening when the sun is lower in the sky.
Also Check: What Is The Best Face Wash For Eczema
Why Is It So Important To Moisturize After A Bath Or Shower
Water is an effective way to put moisture back into the skin, but only if you use lukewarm water, avoid scrubbing and apply a moisturizer within three minutes after bathing or showering. This last step is very important if you dont moisturize immediately afterward, the moisture your skin needs will evaporate and may cause a rebound effect making the skin even more dry.
Some processes such as emollient after a bath or adding colloidal oatmeal to your bath may provide additional eczema relief.
When To Call A Doctor
- Itching makes you or your child irritable.
- Itching is interfering with daily activities or with sleep.
- There are crusting or oozing sores, severe scratch marks, widespread rash, severe discoloration of the skin, or a fever that is accompanied by a rash.
- Painful cracks form on the hands or fingers.
- Atopic dermatitis on the hands interferes with daily school, work, or home activities.
- Signs of an infection develop. These may include:
- Increased pain, swelling, warmth, or redness.
- Red streaks leading from the area.
- Pus draining from the area.
Also Check: How To Get Rid Of Eczema Patches
How To Use A Moisturizer
Itâll work best if you apply it after a bath or shower. Use lukewarm — not hot — water. Bathe for just about 10 minutes.
Pat your skin dry. Leave it slightly damp. That way you donât remove all the moisture you got from bathing.
Apply moisturizer within 3 minutes after you get out of the water. Wait longer and your skin will start to dry out.
Soften the moisturizer by rubbing it between your hands. Use your palms to smear a thick layer all over your skin. Apply it gently in simple downward strokes. Try not to rub it in circles or up and down.
It may feel sticky at first, but that’s OK. Don’t try to take off the extra. Your skin will absorb it.
Each time your wash your hands or get them wet, moisturize them, too. Keep moisturizer by each sink in the house so you don’t forget.
If you use a prescription skin medicine, put it on before you moisturize.