Adult Eczema 101 – Approach to Treatment

DeannaHealth blog

Most eczema-sufferers understand that there are no hard rules for treating eczema. Treatments that work for most people are likely to fail in a portion of others. That’s because eczema is a complicated group of skin inflammations that can have a variety of triggers resulting in a variety of symptoms.

These triggers affect people of different age, gender, and ethnicity with a range of different symptoms.  Because of this, the best treatment approach is to experiment with a variety of adjustments. It’s important to consult your medical professional in any holistic treatment regime, but for most people, an effective approach to eczema treatment should include:

How to use the right diet to manage eczema

Adjusting one’s diet is often the best place to start to treat eczema, this is due to eczema being triggered by certain foods. Eczema is related to the immune system, therefore the foods you eat can have an impact on your entire body which can cause eczema flare-ups causing you itching etc.

Unfortunately, these triggers differ from person to person but there are certainly some common places to start. Common food triggers include milk, eggs, soy, gluten, nuts, and fish. It’s best to try to eliminate these troublemakers one by one from your diet and track improvements. It is critical to not change your diet too drastically all at once because then it becomes very challenging to identify the root cause.

A quick word about gluten: it’s certainly something to be avoided for people with celiac disease (a digestive disorder that damages the small intestine). Many sufferers of celiac disease suffer from eczema at a higher rate (in fact, up to three times higher). That doesn’t mean if you have eczema you have celiac disease. This, of course, can only be diagnosed by a doctor, but the fact is gluten is prevalent in such a wide range of popular foods that it may be overly constrictive to eliminate it completely (just being realistic here!). That being said, it’s absolutely worth experimenting by reducing or eliminating gluten from your diet to see if your condition improves.

As part of your holistic approach, you may consider experimenting with adding supplements to your diet, including:

  • Turmeric, which is related to ginger, has strong anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Zinc can help to boost the immune system and help to grow healthy new skin
  • Omega-3 fatty acid, found in fish, (while also being a good part of your overall diet) may reduce inflammation in the gut and skin. However, if you are known to have fish allergies, it’s best to avoid this.
  • Vitamin D is essential for many of your body’s metabolic functions. It is a useful supplement because many eczema sufferers are deficient in it. It’s also hard to get enough Vitamin D from food alone. Get some sunshine but not too much, and always ensure you’re wearing sun screen.

How the right lifestyle can improve your eczema

The next step after examining your diet is to adjust lifestyle-related factors that may be contributing to your eczema. It almost goes without saying, but excessively rubbing and scratching your skin is only going to make your eczema worse. Going beyond the obvious, limiting stress and improving sleep can drastically improve your condition.

Stress is often a trigger of eczema but reducing one’s stress isn’t easy. Especially when it’s eczema that’s stressing you out! Sometimes it’s hard to know if you’re stressed because of eczema, or if stress is actually causing your eczema. If you want to reduce your stress a bit, you can try these things that can improve both your eczema and your mood:

  • Exercise is proven to reduce stress and anxiety. Although it is true that exercise can leave your skin dry and cause the occasional flare-up, the health benefits of exercise are too profound to ignore.
  • Meditation and other mindfulness techniques may help lower stress and improve your eczema condition.
  • Stay cool: stress and heat are often related, and cooling off may literally calm down your eczema because of this.
  • Sleep: ironically, eczema-sufferers often have trouble with sleeping. But getting a good night’s rest will have an irreplaceable impact on your body, lower your stress levels, and reduce eczema flare-ups. Go to bed at a reasonable hour and ensure you get at least 7 hours rest each night if you can.

Aside from getting good rest and lowering stress, a good laundry routine is crucial for any eczema-sufferer. It’s recommended to wash new clothes, which may have harmful chemicals in them such as formaldehyde. Be careful with your selection of detergent too: almost all detergents on the market have fragrances in them, which can trigger eczema. Always opt to use a detergent that is unscented, or perhaps, try doing a load of laundry without detergent at all. This may sound unpleasant to you, but may be worth it in the end if it helps your eczema!

Using the proper skincare routine to treat eczema

I recommend taking a more natural skin care approach to eczema. These treatments should include:

  • Moisturizers keep the skin hydrated by trapping in water. Not all moisturizers are the same though: in order to truly reap the benefits, the moisturizer should definitely be on the thicker side, like our organic shea butter, which is thick and nutrient packed. The moisturizer needs to sink into the epidermis (the outer layer)of the skin, therefore (avoid “lightweight” moisturizers).
  • Oils are essential and work by locking in moisture within your skin in order for skin repair process to take place. Both our Organic Argan and Rosehip oils make for superior moisturizers. They are dry oils meaning they are instantly absorbed leaving no greasy residue. Both oils are rich in essential fatty acids that are essential for skin repair and healing in eczema sufferers.

Developing the right skincare routine can involve a lot of trial-and-error. I have established Organic Skincare with the goal of simplifying eczema skincare routines by combining well-researched solutions for eczema, into natural and organic products that are effective and can be used by the entire family, including your little ones. While I do encourage you to experiment and find solutions that work for you, I have found that the shea butter works exceptionally well amongst a great majority of my customers. Feedback states that it really soothes the skin and decreases itching, as well as reducing other symptoms that eczema can bring about for many people. It simultaneously acts as a thick moisturizer (the most essential of eczema skin care) as well as providing a pleasant combination of soothing, nutritional and antibacterial properties for your skin.

To conclude, there isn’t a perfect one-size-fits-all eczema routine, but there are steps you can take right now to improve your condition. Progress won’t always be linear – that’s just the nature of experimentation. With effort and commitment, I am confident you can take control of your eczema today by looking at your lifestyle and diet, making adjustments where needed so you can start enjoying more healthier skin.