This July seems to be the hottest yet, with many complaining about the horrible side effects of the sun. One side effect which usually rears its ugly head during the summer is eczema.
Want to soothe that irritating sensation that makes you want to scratch? Here are a few ways to prevent or beat the itch.
Summer presents dry-weather conditions which as a result dries out the skin. They say prevention is better than cure, so try to moisturise as often as possible (at least two times daily), preferably after a shower, and make it an active part of your self-care routine.
Take a warm shower
Speaking of showers, although many opt to take a cold shower to address matters of the heat, choosing to bathe with warm water will actually work in your favour, if you’re looking to ease the itch of eczema. A soak is best, but the shower is just as effective in opening your pores, soothing both your muscles and skin cells. That kind of relaxation is timeless.
Still in the bathroom, sometimes the problem isn’t just the heat, but is a combination of both the dryness and sweat with the type of soap you’re bathing with. Avoid harsh soaps or body washes laced with dye and perfumes and use more organic types that are good for your skin, or soaps that are eczema anti-flare. Also, leave no stones unturned: lather responsibly and rinse off the lather in its entirety. Be sure to pat dry to seal in moisture.
Make smart clothing choices
Let’s head over to the bedroom. Pairing the heat with a selection of clothing chosen in the name of fashion can do more harm to your itchy skin than good. Stay away from tight clothes or those that are coarser and scratchy in texture. The whole aim is to prevent too much sweat, so put on threads that are both comfortable and summer-ready, preferably cotton or smooth in texture.
Humidify your room
Because your environment is hot and dry, consequently causing itchy and flaking skin, it’s best to neutralise your inner sanctum. The humidifier adds moisture to the air within your space, so investing in one will help greatly to lighten your surroundings and give your skin the opportunity to breathe freely. If you do invest in a humidifier, clean it often to avoid bacterial growth.
Treat it like an allergy
Many with eczema will opt to let the time pass, but how do you cope through the itching? Treat it internally like an allergy and medicate accordingly with anti-itch medicines that contain antihistamines. These are typically drowsy so it’s best taken at night-time. If you must take one in that instant, be prepared to take a nap.
Use Calamine lotion or anti-itch cream remedies
Treat eczema at its source by putting the calamine lotion or anti-itch cream to the flaky or itchy part of the skin. Hydrocortisone cream is most effective for soothing relief and should be applied before you moisturise. Whatever you do, don’t scratch. It will only make matters worse and uncomfortable for you. Cut or file those nails down, if you need to, and show your skin some love by gloving it at night if you’re a scratcher.
Story by Krysta Anderson