If you have eczema, you are already aware of how tricky proper skincare can be. Getting a grip on your dry, itchy and flakey skin can be more challenging than most people assume – and, should you develop sensitivity to your products, you often have to start from square one. Though you should always consult with a dermatologist if you’re having trouble managing your eczema, here are a few general tips to keep in mind as you work to keep your flare-ups under control.
Refrain from taking hot showers.
Yes, hot showers feel good – but, if you have eczema, this is likely only a temporary sensation, as hot water tends to irritate your skin over time. In other words, the longer you lock yourself in a sauna-like shower, the more your skin struggles to maintain moisture. Moisture is essential to eczema management, so when it comes to your showers, opt for a lukewarm, shorter wash up.
Use soap sparingly.
Just like hot water can rob your skin of natural moisture, soaps can do the same thing. Plain, fragrance-free products from brands like Cetaphil or Dove are your best bet when it comes to eczema-friendly body cleansers. You should also practice using soap and water only where you need it most. For example, your limbs aren’t likely to get dirty, but your feet and armpits need regular cleansing.
Try a disinfecting bath.
If you have atopic dermatitis and are prone to infections, try regular bleach baths. Bleach baths, which are similar to a chlorinated pool, help disinfect the skin, preventing infection and further issues. If you aren’t sure whether you will benefit from this type of bath, consult your doctor. If you’d like to swap bleach for a safer chemical, try vinegar, which may also reduce the number of bacteria on the skin.
Purchase a humidifier.
Dry air is a common trigger of eczema flare-ups. If you routinely experience flare-ups in the colder, drier months, or your apartment home does not have enough humid air, consider purchasing a humidifier. A humidifier can be found at major retailers and will help your skin retain moisture and prevent irritation. Not to mention, they’ll come in handy during cold and flu season, when humidified air can relieve bothersome congestion.
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