Medically known as atopic dermatitis, eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin disease which occurs due to a combination of environmental (bacteria, allergens) and inherited factors that make some individuals more prone to contract this skin condition than others. Although eczema is not a contagious skin disorder, it affects people of all ages, including newborns and infants. According to statistics, over 15 million Americans suffer from eczema at one point in their lives. The main symptom of eczema, although not constant is itching. This extremely common skin disorder has no cure; however specialized treatment can relieve symptoms and prevent further outbreaks on the skin area affected by eczema. In addition to conventional treatment prescribed by a dermatologist, there are several natural remedies with proven effectiveness in eczema relief.
Causes of Eczema
While the underlying causes of this skin condition are not fully known by medical specialists and researchers, it is believed that the presence of Celia disease and various forms of allergies might trigger the occurrence of eczema in some people. Individuals who have dry skin or who subject their skin to extreme temperatures are prone to developing eczema. Daily stress is also another potential cause of this skin disorder and it can worsen the symptoms. Consumption of foods such as dairy, peanuts, eggs and fish might also trigger symptoms associated with eczema. In addition, direct and long-term exposure to various air pollutants, allergens and irritants might make the already present symptoms worse.
Risk Factors of Eczema
- Exposure of the skin to harsh conditions ( an environment with low humidity, too hot/too cold water, too hot/too cold temperatures)
- Improper hygiene, which is also responsible for causing allergic conditions as well as asthma; many people experience an allergic reaction to house dust mites, which in turn triggers the occurrence of eczema;
- Genetic factors, including a family history of allergies to various plants, foods or certain chemicals
- Young age – 65% of the cases involve infants under the age of 1; small children under the age of 5 are the most affected (90% of the cases).
The Most Common Symptoms and Signs of Eczema
- Very itchy and dry skin; inflamed and/or irritated skin; scaling and/or thickened skin;
- Blisters accompanied by oozing, cracking, crusting and /or flaking; redness occurs around the blisters;
- Occasional bleeding might accompany eczema; this is due to scratching that leaves raw areas on the skin
- Lichenification – this symptom refers to dry areas that are either lighter or darker than the normal skin tone.
While these symptoms start in adults primarily on the inside areas of the elbows and knees, in children under the age of 2 these typically start on the cheeks.
Foolproof Home Remedies to Relieve Eczema Symptoms
In addition to prescribed treatment for eczema (topical corticosteroids and immunomodulators, anti-itch ointments and even oral antibiotics for secondary infections), you can also try the following natural remedies.
1. A mixture of mustard oil and margosa leaves boiledtogether and applied topically
These two natural remedies work synergistically to bring aboutrelief from eczema symptoms, such as dry and scaly patches on the skin. You should preferably boil the two together in an iron pot instead of an aluminum one ( to better preserve their properties) and then apply the resulted mixture ( at room temperature) directly on the itching skin three to four times a day. These remedies help soothe the irritated skin and prevent further scratching.
2. Tomato Juice Included Daily Into Your Diet
This remedy truly works miracles for the inflamed skin, becauseit helps treat this skin condition from the within. Try drinking tomato juice on an empty stomach in the morning and even before bedtime, for better results and quicker eczema relief. Tomato juice is rich in the antioxidant lycopene, a carotene highly beneficial for various skin disorders,among other health benefits.
3. Nutmeg Paste Applied Topically
This ancient remedy for a large variety of skin diseases is said to work miracles for eczema. Mix nutmeg with a soothing oil (preferably almond oil) and then apply this mixture directly on the areas affected by eczema. Moreover, continuing to use this remedy after clearing up the eczema will also prevent its relapse.
4. Sandalwood Paste Applied Topically on the Affected Skin Areas
Mix one teaspoon of sandalwood with one teaspoon of camphor oil ( with instant soothing properties), then apply this mixture on the affected areas and you will experience immediately relief from eczema symptoms. This remedy will also prevent you from scratching the inflamed areas, which will also prevent further damage to the epidermis.
5. Probiotics Taken As Supplements
Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus in particular have the ability to control various forms of allergies, especially in infants and also to boost the immune system naturally. These probiotics also help reduce eczema symptoms if taken daily.
6. Evening Primrose Oil Combined with Borage Oil
These two natural remedies help reduce the itching of the skin affected by eczema, thanks to their soothing properties. Both oils are rich in vitamin E (crucial for all skin disorders) and in GLA, an essential fatty acid with anti-inflammatory effects.
7. Incorporate Foods High in Potent Antioxidants Into Your Diet
Try to consume on a daily basis foods rich in vitamin C and flavonoids, such as wild berries, strawberries, kiwifruit and green peppers. These work as antihistamines and help reduce allergic reactions that typically accompany eczema.
Jazzi George Is A Team Member For Dermatend Products, Which Helps In Skin Tags Removal. She likes to blog on beauty and health related tips.