I am always surprised by how many people have eczema. Also known as atopic dermatitis, eczema is a painful, irritating and embarrassing skin condition that affects babies, kids and adults. While many doctors will prescribe corticosteroids to help you treat eczema, there are natural ways to treat not only the symptoms but the root cause too!
What is Eczema
Eczema is a skin condition that causes the skin to crack, bleed, seep and flake off. It can be itchy and painful at the same time. It usually appears in moist sections of the skin such as inside elbows and backs of knees, but it can be anywhere on the body, even on your face.
Dermatologists will call it atopic dermatitis, and while there are many treatments for the symptoms, understanding what causes eczema flare-ups is key to keeping it under control!
What Causes Eczema
Eczema is aggravated by many factors such as:
- Extreme weather conditions (hot, humid, cold, dry)
- Certain fabrics
- Allergies (food, seasonal)
- Chemicals and synthetic fragrances and even some essential oils
By realizing what triggers your eczema you can start taking steps to reduce those triggers and help keep your eczema under control.
Natural Treatments for Eczema
I’m always amazed at how many customers I have that ask if I sell anything to treat eczema (which I do) but then they go back to using their regular shampoos/soaps/lotions etc. Many traditional personal care products (though some will try and disagree) 😉 contain toxic chemicals that irritate your skin and cause eczema flare-ups.
Avoiding Toxic Ingredients: Certain ingredients, like Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS), can irritate sensitive skin. SLS is often found in cleansing products (shampoo, soaps, washes, makeup removers, dish soap, laundry detergents). Synthetic fragrance is also a skin irritant in many cases. Some essential oils can also trigger an eczema flareup so it’s a good idea to avoid any fragrances while you are trying to get your eczema under control!
Dry & Moisturized: Seems like an oxymoron here! You want your skin to be moisturized and dry. After a shower, lightly pat your skin and apply moisturizer to lock in natural moisture (try coconut oil or shea butter). During the day, keep your skin from getting too moist – areas like inside the elbows tend to sweat in heat and this can flare up eczema.
Comfortable Clothing: Certain fabrics, like itchy wool can irritate your eczema. Also, if you use fabric softeners or freshen sheets in the dryer – Don’t! They contain a ton of nasty stuff that just attaches to your clothing and then sits on your skin while you wear your clothing. Use simple detergents for washing and nothing in the dryer. If static is an issue, look for eco-sheets that work together to reduce the charge without using toxic ingredients!
Allergies: This can be hard if you don’t know what you are allergic to! Keep a diary if you can to see if any new foods, lotions or environmental changes are causing your eczema. Try to avoid anything that makes your eczema flare-up.
Stress: Easy said than do but try to reduce stress in your life. Go for a walk, a job, or do some yoga. Read a book. Whatever it takes to reduce stress in your life!
Products to Buy to Help Your Eczema
To avoid making this a commercial type of blog, I will not post links here. However, I will list items I sell and have used (and my customer’s have used) that have helped clear up eczema issues. Of course, you should still check your soaps/washes/detergents/shampoos/cosmetics and avoid ingredients that can cause flare-ups, but for on-the-spot relief, try these:
- Pure Anada Organic Shea Butter (my personal favorite!)
- Organic Coconut Oil
- Rocky Mountain Unscented Body Butter
- Pumpkin Soap
- Hazelwood Necklaces & Bracelets
If you can’t find these items in your local area or want to read more on them, check them out on our site at http://www.NaturaleGREEN.ca. Or you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org to chat further about it. Remember, it’s not about treating the symptoms, you have to get to the root cause and make some changes. Eczema is an allergic reaction, which is the body’s reaction to something it does not get along with. Slapping on some cortisone cream is NOT treating your eczema, it’s only treating the symptoms. So do the research, change your personal care products where you can and listen to your body!