Eczema is a health condition that causes inflamed, red, itchy patches on the skin. It is not contagious. Treating such a health condition can be a simple step, similar to taking care of common issues like removing the cause of allergic reactions and making few dietary and lifestyle changes if required.
Symptoms of Eczema
Before coming into the limelight, Eczema might show up symptoms such as dry skin, itching, scaling, cracking, reddened/patchy skin as well as blisters. Itching is the most common of all, and sufferers can easily observe.
Causes and Triggers of Eczema
Though it is known to be caused by several factors combining, for example, genetics, environment, disorders such as thyroid, weak immunity, sensitive skin that prevents a balanced flow of germs and moisture (in and out) of the body. The exact cause of Eczema is hard to quote. It might happen due to wool or some other fiber, certain soaps, perfumes, dust, pet dander, etc. Apart from these, long time exposure to water, sweating and then chilling immediately as well as living in dry climatic conditions too may act as triggers for Eczema.
Daily Hygenic Care: One Must Follow
- Going in for Lukewarm showers prevents dry skin. However, a mild soap/ body cleanser can be less damaging.
- After the shower, prefer pathing yourself to dry rather than rubbing the skin. Apply some moisturizer (mild and non-fragrant)
- Make use of loose cotton clothes as synthetic or woolen clothes may increase irritability. Furthermore, tight fit clothes too should be avoided.
- Never scratch the rash.
Apart from these daily care tips, one might need some medication to reduce allergies.
1. Calamine or Benadryl
Applying a non-prescription steroid cream with anti-itching lotion say Calamine might provide relief. Benadryl pills might help reduce itching, but this needs careful handling as Benadryl is a sedative drug and might make you sleepy. Consult your doctor before applying any new medication.
Clean the rashed/infected area regularly with some hypoallergic soap. Later apply Cream or lotion.
2. Natural Products
Applying natural products like coconut oil or aloe vera gel help moisturize the dry skin and thus prove soothing. Moreover, the anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties make it act as a barrier against infections. Furthermore, it promotes healing when the skin gets cracked. Use Aloe Vera directly from the plant, or one can buy from stores.
Use Natural Cleansers rather than cosmetic products such as shower gel/body washes and cleansers that contain harsh chemicals. These chemicals can aggravate eczema.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
The use of Apple Cider Vinegar is also supported by the National Eczema Association (NEA) though it needs a lot of caution. It might prove beneficial as applying diluted. Apple Cider Vinegar balance the lower acid levels of skin in the case of Eczema. It is helpful as lower acidic levels of skin can weaken its defenses. Also, its antibacterial properties prevent buildup pf infections where the skin gets scaled or cracked. It can be added to and finally rinsed off thoroughly else can be used in wet wraps (applying the solution to cotton/gauge, covering it with clean cotton fabric, and leaving it. Over the infected area for about 3 hours.
Note – Undiluted ACP can cause burns or severe damage.
4. Bleach in the Bath
Use 6% plain bleach and prepare a bath in the right proportions to soak the body. Finally, rinse it thoroughly with lukewarm water before gently patting the skin dry. This technique might help to kill the bacteria on the sky due to its anti-bacterial properties. Bleach has strong fumes. Thus, it should not be adopted by people with asthma or breathing problems.
5. Colloidal Oatmeal
Colloidal oatmeal is made by finely grinding oats and boiled further to extract its skin healing properties. The natural ingredient, also known as Avena sativa, is found in cosmetic products such as moisturizers, shampoos, and shaving creams. It is one of the best remedies for skin conditions – itchy, dry, or irritated skin. Colloidal oatmeal calms and softens inflamed skin.
The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of the remedy are beneficial for eczema patients. Avoid using colloidal oatmeal products with additives and fragrances as they are not pure. Use colloidal oatmeal that has oats as the only ingredient.
Add the powdered product to a warm bath and soak it for 10-15 minutes. Later, pat your skin dry and apply a moisturizer with high oil content. People allergic to gluten, consult your doctor before application.
In the case of eczema, the outer layer of the skin does not function properly, which is why it needs extra moisture. Bathing works as a treatment for eczema patients as it provides the essential oils to the skin. Avoid frequent bathing as, in some cases, it can dry your skin and worsen the health condition.
Follow the listed pointers for bathing:
- Use warm water
- Take a shower or bath once a day 10-15 minutes
- Do not scrub the skin
- Apply Gentle Cleansers. Avoid soaps
- Practice medicinal bath with soda, vinegar, or oatmeal
Always apply oil-based moisturizers after bathing to prevent eczema flares.
7. Coconut Oil
Coconut Oil contains fatty acids and has anti-inflammatory properties that help soothe skin, ease irritation, adds moisture to the skin, and reduces the risk of infection.
Applying coconut oil to the skin rather than any other mineral oil can improve the symptoms of eczema in a short time.
Use it after a bath or before sleeping to keep the skin moisturized.
The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of Honey can help treat the condition of eczema.
Honey is a natural remedy that can heal wounds, boost the immune system, help fight off bacterial infections, and more.
Try dabbing Manuka honey products onto the area, designed especially for wound care and skin conditions.
9. Tea Tree Oil
Melaleuca alternifolia, also known as Tea Tree oil, is derived from an Australian native plant, Melaleuca alternifolia.
The anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antiseptic, antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties present in the oil can soothe the skin, ease the symptoms associated with skin conditions, including eczema, and help fight infections.
The natural remedy also encompasses wound-healing properties in the oil. Make sure to dilute the essential oil and mix with a carrier oil, such as almond or olive oil, before application.
10. Diet Therapy
Eczema is an inflammatory condition, and the best remedy to reduce inflammation is diet therapy. Some food can reduce the effect of inflammation and diminish eczema flares.
Make sure to add the following natural ingredients to your diet plan:
- Leafy greens
- Beans and Lentils
- Vegetables and Fruits
- Turmeric and Cinnamon
11. Maintain Distance from Strong Heat Sources
Strong heat sources can make eczema symptoms worse, such as dehydrating the skin and aggravating the itchiness of eczema.
Avoid sitting next to heaters or fireplaces during winters. Instead, use a humidifier.
12. Sunflower Oil
The anti-inflammatory properties of the sunflower oil help soothe itchiness and inflamed eczema skin. It also maintains moisture on the skin and boosts the skin’s barrier function.
13. Acupuncture and Acupressure Therapy
Acupuncture is the practice of using fine needles to alter the flow of energy. Some researchers state the application of acupuncture therapy on eczema patients may bring itch relief.
Acupressure is also similar to acupuncture therapy. Under this therapy, experts use fingers and hand pressures instead of needles to improve the energy flow and reduce the symptoms of the itchy skin.
14. Relaxation Techniques
If you are suffering from eczema, avoid activities that can cause a flare or irritate the skin. Practicing the above listed natural remedies for eczema can be beneficial and reduce its risk of worsening. We recommend consulting your doctor if you find itchiness in the early days of practicing any listed remedy.