What People Say Works for Eczema

What People Say Works for Eczema

What People Say Works for Eczema

People living with Eczema have reported that some of the most effective treatments for their skin include medications like Clobetisol, Trimacinolone, Elocon, and Fluocinonide. This is according to a new study by CureTogether, a free resource owned by 23andMe that allows people to share information about their health and treatments.

Participants in the study also said they found that simple interventions like avoiding allergens, avoiding sweating or temperature changes, moisturizing often, and reducing stress were also effective. They also said dietary changes help. Conversely some common treatments such as antihistamines, coconut oil, and not washing hair every day were among the least effective, according to the study.

Effective Treatments for Eczema As Rated By Patients
1. Clobetisol
2. Triamcinolone
3. Steroid injection
4. Elocon
5. Fluocinonide
6. Avoid problem foods
7. Avoid allergens
8. Corticosteroid cream
9. Moisturize frequently
10. Reduce stress

According to the National Institutes of Health, Eczema affects 15 million Americans and 10% of young adults worldwide. It can be embarrassing to experience cosmetically, but also impacts people’s quality of life. Finding accurate recommendations on treatments that work well can be challenging, so CureTogether asked people living with Eczema to rate the effectiveness of 32 different patient-reported treatments.

Where did this data come from? This is the result of a four-year CureTogether study on Eczema, in which 1,109 people living with the condition shared information about their symptoms and what treatments worked best for them. We’d like to thank those who participated. And just as they shared their experience with treatments, we’re freely and openly sharing the results of the Eczema study.

This is part of a regular series of CureTogether research findings. CureTogether’s research findings are different than those made by 23andMe, which look at genetic associations with illness, traits and drug response. But as we continue our work with the CureTogether community, 23andMe hopes to incorporate more of this kind of self-reported information into our own research. CureTogether present its findings just as they are — patient-reported data — to stimulate discussion and generate new insights for further research.

Please tweet, blog, or pass this along to anyone who can benefit or is interested in Eczema. Thank you!

 

Causes and Triggers of Eczema

Causes and Triggers of Eczema

The exact causes of eczema are unknown. You might have inherited a tendency for eczema. You may have a family member who has eczema or who has hay fever (allergic rhinitis) or asthma. Many doctors think eczema causes are linked to allergic disease, such as hay fever or asthma. Doctors call this the atopic triad. Many children with eczema (up to 80%) will develop hay fever and/or asthma.

There are many triggers of eczema that can make it flare or get worse. Below are some of the common triggers. You should learn what triggers your eczema to flare, and then try to avoid it.

IRRITANTS:

Causes and Triggers of EczemaIrritants can make your symptoms worse. What irritates you may be different from what irritates someone else with the condition, but could include:

  • Soaps and detergents,
  • Shampoos, dish-washing liquids
  • Bubble Bath
  • Disinfectants like chlorine
  • Contact with juices from fresh fruits, meats, vegetables

 

ALLERGENS:

Causes and Triggers of EczemaIf your genes make you more likely to develop atopic eczema, the condition will develop after you are exposed to certain environmental factors, such as allergens.

Allergens are substances that can cause the body to react abnormally. This is known as an allergic reaction. Some of the most common allergens that can be causes of eczema include:

  • House dust mites
  • Pets (cats > dogs)
  • Pollens (seasonal)
  • Molds
  • Dandruff

 

 MICROBES:

Some types of microbe can be triggers of eczema:

  • Certain bacteria like Staphylococcusaureus
  • Viruses
  • Certain Fungi

 

HOT OR COLD TEMPERATURES:

  • Hot weather
  • High and low humidity
  • Perspiration from exercise

 

FOODS:

Causes and Triggers of EczemaAtopic eczema can sometimes be caused by food allergens, especially before the age of one. Some studies of children and young people with atopic eczema found that one-third to nearly two-thirds also had a food allergy. Food allergies associated with eczema causes are typically:

  • Dairy products
  • Eggs
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Soy products
  • Wheat

 

STRESS:

Stress is known to be associated with eczema but it is not fully understood how it affects the condition. Some people with eczema have worse symptoms when they are stressed. For others their eczema symptoms cause them to feel stressed.

HORMONES:

Hormones are chemicals produced by the body. They can cause a wide variety of effects. When the levels of certain hormones in the body increase or decrease some women can experience flare ups of their eczema.

What Can Kigelia Fruit Extract Do for Your Skin?

What Can Kigelia Fruit Extract Do for Your Skin?

kigelia fruit extract

Kigelia africana has been cultivated throughout sub-Saharan Africa, trees of the kigelia africana and kigelia pinnata plants yield a large sausage-like fruit that the region’s indigenous peoples have used for medicinal and cosmetic applications since time immemorial. Many cosmetic companies have acknowledged the fruit’s dermis-improving properties through the addition of fruit extract to some of their products. Medical research has also uncovered evidence that kigelia fruit extract may be effective in helping to treat melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.

Kigelia Fruit Extract has Antibacterial Properties

Pursuing up on studies that will showed this stem bark from the kigelia africana pressed strong antibacterial qualities, the team connected with Southern African experts executed a report to discover when the kigelia berries offered these gains as well. Many people well prepared elementary removes connected with the two stem bark along with berries applying distilled normal water, ethanol or ethyl acetate. Research workers after that examined this removes against gram-negative along with gram-positive bacterias. Within a document on the studies inside a 2002 matter from the “South African Log connected with Botany, ” they reported stem bark along with berries removes showed major antibacterial activity against the two strains connected with bacterias. These kinds of studies have provided just how regarding using kigelia remove inside skin-cleansing agents and also other products meant to overcome microbial epidermis microbe infections.

Kigelia Fruit Extract Helps Tighten Skin

A five-member Indian staff of people began a review of your controlled literature spanning reports directly into kigelia’s healing along with cosmeceutical components. Into their record, printed within a the year just gone problem of “Natural Item Radiance” — identified within 2011 because the “Indian Log of Pure Products along with Resources” — that they specified reports which located kigelia’s active ingredients include steroidal saponins plus the flavonoids luteolin along with quercetin. Most of these phytochemicals aid bolster along with stabilize your collagen fibres which service skin, therefore creating a toning influence. Some reports located the remove seemed to be specially successful within toning skin near your chests.

Kigelia Fruit Extract Fights Skin Cancer

Research workers within North Ireland in europe done an within vitro review to be able to assess the potential of varied compounds from your kigelia pinnata fresh fruit to halt your spread regarding human most cancers cellular material. Part of the traction for the review was the original use of your fresh fruit by simply people healers to take care of skin cancer as well as other skin disorders. Scientists isolated numerous compounds from your kigelia fresh fruit in addition to analyzed these individuals next to most cancers cellular material inside research. They discovered major anti-cancer attributes coming from a number of kigelia compounds, such as isocoumarins demethylkigelin in addition to kigelin; oleic in addition to heneicosanoic fat; ferulic p; as well as the furonaphthoquinone 2-(1-hydroxyethyl)naphtho[2, 3-b]furan-4, 9-dione. In their conclusions, published in a 2010 problem regarding “Planta Medica, ” analysts noted how the furonaphthoquinone was likewise useful within vitro next to a pair of pressures regarding busts cancer cellular material.

Kigelia Fruit Extract has Other Benefits Too

With it is writeup on the actual materials addressing kigelia’s cosmeceutical applications, the actual writers in the the year just gone “Natural Solution Radiance” post claimed kigelia had been popular just as one component in a range of aesthetic supplements. They can grant skin a easier visual appeal by means of reducing fine collections and wrinkle depth. In addition they tend to be considered to encourage skin firmness, by natural means lighten skin color, lower spots and boost blood flow towards the skin.

Top 10 Tips for Moisturizing Eczema

Moisturizing Eczema

Top 10 Tips for Moisturizing Eczema

Think of your skin as a permanent ensemble — it has the ability to protect the body, regulate internal temperature and pretty much go with anything. But sometimes an outfit simply doesn’t end up looking the way you want it to, and such is the case with certain dermatological conditions such as eczema.

There’s no cure for eczema, a recurring condition that causes itchy, dry skin and leads to redness, scaling and sometimes oozing. The really frustrating part about eczema is that the more you scratch, the more irritated your skin becomes.

Think about a childhood bout of the itchy hell that is chicken pox, or even a case of poison ivy. Parents use MacGyver-like solutions when thinking of innovative ways to prevent children from scratching. They smother their offspring in oatmeal, tape oven mitts around their hands, and drench them in ice baths. Unlike chicken pox, which eventually runs its course, itchy eczema flare-ups will always lie dormant for children and adults affected with the condition. Since most people don’t want to go to work or school covered in chalk-pink calamine lotion, one of the best ways to avoid sudden eczema outbreaks is to keep skin moist and clean.

Moisturizing eczema is key to keeping your “outerwear” looking (and feeling) its best. Scratching only worsens and intensifies the disorder, so making sure skin stays soft and supple helps manage eczema flare-ups.

You only get one set of skin in this life, regardless of its condition, so it’s up to you to make it work. Learn about the ins and outs of moisturizing eczema on the next page.

10: Hit the Showers (or Baths)

It only makes sense that a top 10 list about moisturizing eczema would somehow involve water. When skin is itchy, dry and cracking, jumping into the shower or bathtub offers much-needed relief. Besides the fact that water adds moisture to skin, it can also remove debris and irritants that may contribute to eczema flare-ups [source: National Eczema Association]. Stress is another factor that may aggravate eczema for some people — all the more reason to take a relaxing soak.

But beware: You can have too much of a good thing when it comes to water. After about 10 minutes spent in the tub or shower, water no longer moisturizes skin. In fact, the opposite happens — skin can’t retain the moisture and will dry out with excessive bathing. If you have eczema and can’t get all of your bathing business completed in a five- to 10-minute washing window, you might want to re-evaluate your cleaning routine and streamline the process.

For those who prefer creating a makeshift bathroom inferno in order to unwind in a steaming bath and shower, think again. Boiling water is another no-no in the fight against dry skin — use lukewarm water because hot water withdraws natural oils from skin [source: American Academy of Dermatology]. Nothing should cause your skin to redden in the shower.

Now that we know proper bathing techniques when it comes to moisturizing eczema, we must learn what to do after we grab our towels and dry off. On the next page, learn why it’s a race against time the second your feet touch the bathmat.

OTHER SINS OF THE SKIN

Eczema is a general term that encompasses different types of skin disorders. The most common type is atopic dermatitis, an extremely itchy variety that usually affects infants and children. Other examples include contact dermatitis, neurodermatitis and seborrheic dermatitis.

9: Getting Amped for Damp

It’s just you versus the elements when it comes to moisturizing eczema. After taking a lukewarm, seven-minute shower, there’s still more work to be done in the fight to lock in every drop of moisture.

When it comes to eczema, time is your biggest enemy after turning off the faucet and stepping out of the shower. Moisturizing within three minutes after bathing helps your skin retain moisture and avoid cracking [source: EczemaNet]. When your skin is damp, it’s the perfect time to apply moisturizing ointments and creams (discussed on the next page).

Though retaining water is crucial when moisturizing eczema, that doesn’t mean you have to drip-dry after every bath or shower. Gently blot the skin with a towel and then apply moisturizing agents so you don’t remove natural oils.

There’s no point in following proper eczema-prevention procedures if you’re not using the right moisturizers. Learn how ointments, creams and lotions aren’t all created equal.

PASTE, POWDER AND ROLL!

Medicated liquids, paste, powders and even shake lotions are additional ways doctors can treat eczema [source: EczemaNet].

8: Lotions, Creams and Ointments

Visit any drug store or beauty supply shop and you’ll notice the aisles bursting with lotions, creams and ointments. Though it may seem that they all do the same thing, there are important differences when it comes to moisturizing eczema. The key is to find a product with enough oil to retain moisture and prevent excessive dryness.

  • Lotions are the mildest of the bunch when it comes to moisturizing eczema. Lotion contains oil but its main ingredient is water — since water eventually evaporates, this won’t do much for extremely dry, itchy skin. Lotion is a good option for people with mild cases of eczema or for those who live in humid climates [source: National Eczema Association, EczemaNet].
  • Cream is the next step up from lotion as it contains equal parts water and oil. Because the goal is to create a layer between moistened skin and the environment, a thick barrier like cream can help do the job. However, people with dry skin should note that some creams have additives and preservatives that can cause irritation [source: National Eczema Association, EczemaNet].
  • The best way to moisturize eczema is to use ointment since the product contains 80 percent oil and 20 percent water. Viscous ointments create a visible layer atop skin to trap in moisture, though they can feel a bit greasy. If you decide to go the ointment route, make sure not to use these products on areas of the body that get excessively sweaty [source: EczemaNet].

On the next page, learn why people with eczema should pretend the words “handle with care” are stamped across their skin.

7: Be Gentle When Moisturizing

Eczema is a highly reactive condition — vehemently scratching a patch of cracked, itchy skin will worsen symptoms and can cause a rash for some patients. Gently moisturizing eczema is an extremely important part of managing the condition. Think of it this way: Treating skin with a soft touch should eventually lead to skin that’s soft to the touch.

Dyes, perfumes, detergents, alcohol and other chemicals can irritate skin and trigger eczema flare-ups. Besides checking creams and ointments for these ingredients, it’s important to note these additives in soaps and cleansers. Look for moisturizing elements like glycerin, mineral oil, linoleic acid and petrolatum when selecting soaps and creams [source: EczemaNet].

Select mild products geared toward dry skin — Dove, Vaseline, Eucerin and Cetaphil are good examples of brands focused on gentle solutions to dry skin. Vaseline petroleum jelly and Aquaphor are simple, gelatinous products that go on thick and help protect skin.

As mentioned earlier, don’t use too much friction when toweling off after a shower; gently pat dry so skin retains its natural oils. Avoid harsh materials that can scratch skin and set off eczema — that means skipping loofah sponges and scrubbing puffs in the shower, as well as staying away from tight, itchy fabrics like wool and polyester [source: National Eczema Association, EczemaNet].

So you need an easy touch while you’re moisturizing, but there’s more to it than that — find out on the next page.

Top 10 Tips for Moisturizing Eczema

You’ve got to pay a little more attention to your moisturizer routine if you have eczema.

©iStockphoto.com/kati1313

6: Apply Yourself

Without the proper application methods, moisturizing eczema would be a useless task — just squirting a few drops of lotion on your legs or smothering your hands in 10 layers of salve probably won’t keep eczema at bay.

As we mentioned earlier, the key is locking in moisture after bathing. Gently apply the product by stroking it downward on the skin. Take your time smearing on the cream or ointment — it may take a few minutes for it to absorb completely. If necessary, roll the product between your hands before application to increase its malleability and temperature. Always apply topical medications before moisturizers [source: National Eczema Association].

Depending on the product you use, it’s usually a good idea to reapply moisturizer throughout the day. Rub cream into your skin right after bathing and anytime you use soap and water. Even if you don’t come into contact with water but you feel a bit itchy and dry, massage a few globs of moisturizer into your skin.

The less humidity in the air, the more protection your skin may need. That’s why people who live in very dry climates, like the Southwest, may require heavier, less watery moisturizers than those who live in wetter regions. People who deal with harsh winters may need to load up on thicker moisturizing agents as well.

If the urge to scratch dry, itchy skin has overtaken every other thought in your mind, you may need to try a wet dressing.

5: Moisturizer with Extra Dressing

Wet dressing may sound like a slimy salad, but this is no drippy condiment. When it comes to eczema, wet dressings can moisturize stubborn areas that refuse to soften.

Wet dressings, also known as wet wrapping or wet bandages, are especially therapeutic for young children who may have a hard time controlling the urge to scratch. Besides preventing your child from physically making contact with dry patches, wet dressings offer relief from hot, itchy skin.

After bathing, apply any topical medications and follow with moisturizers as per usual. Sop bandages, gauze or paper towels in lukewarm water and start wrapping the affected areas. Top the wet paper towels with a layer of dry bandages and let skin absorb the moisture. Once the bottom, wet layer dries, it’s time to remove the wet dressing — leaving on dry bandages may lead to skin irritation [source: The Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne, National Eczema Association].

If you don’t have access to bandages or gauze, wet clothing can also work. Follow the same steps above but, depending on the area of the body, top wet clothing, like pajamas, with a dry layer or wear a pair of wet socks under a pair of dry socks.

There’s another way to moisturize eczema beyond creamy lotions and wet paper towels — learn more on the next page.

4: Humidifier Hope

When tenderly caring for parched skin, there needs to be something more than just love in the air. As we learned earlier about climate and season, moist air helps keep skin smooth. That’s when a humidifier can come in handy.

Humidifiers disperse water into the air, which can help moisten dry, chapped skin. These appliances use different types of technology to add water droplets throughout your home — the simplest humidifiers release steam, while others release fog and evaporative air. Because they are portable, humidifiers make a great moisturizing solution for active eczematous children.

It’s important to note that humidifiers can cause more harm than good if not properly cleaned. Because it’s all about the moisture when it comes to humidifiers, mold and bacteria can’t help but mooch off these water-loving appliances. No homeowner wants to spray fungi throughout his or her house, so make sure to follow the user’s manual and regularly clean the unit. Also, steam humidifiers (also called vaporizers) can potentially cause burns, so double-check this option if you have children [source: Brain and Nice].

Top 10 Tips for Moisturizing Eczema

Bedtime means time for teddy bears — and a good moisturizing cream.

©iStockphoto.com/matka_Wariatka

3: Moonlit Moisturizing

Slathering on goopy ointments as part of your morning routine can literally become a sticky situation as you try to hold your toothbrush, get dressed and even grab the doorknob. In fact, if you’re not paying attention, all of that carefully applied moisturizer may rub off on your clothes, couch and refrigerator door handle before you jump in the car.

For this reason, some doctors recommend night as the perfect time to practice moisturizing rituals. By bathing and moisturizing before bedtime, there’s less chance that you’ll continue to dry out skin. The body will have a better opportunity to absorb creams thoroughly and create a barrier between skin and the elements. If there are certain parts of your body that are more irritated and dry, like hands or feet, you can bathe, apply any prescription treatments, add a moisturizing agent, wrap your hands or feet in cotton gloves or socks accordingly and then doze off without the embarrassment or self-consciousness of wearing these accessories to work or school.

Wet dressings at bedtime are especially helpful because itchy skin makes for trouble sleeping. Not only will wet dressings, when applied correctly, help reduce the itch, these treatments should soften skin and moisturize eczema.

Blankets and pajamas made from natural, breathable fabrics, like cotton, should also allow eczematous children and adults to get a better night’s sleep.

LIKE PARENT, LIKE CHILD

Certain types of eczema hit infants and children the hardest. Your child may be at risk of developing atopic dermatitis if you or your spouse had the disorder as a kid or other conditions like asthma, hay fever and food allergies [source: Discovery Home and Health].

2: Nonsteroidal Prescription Treatments

Some eczema flare-ups require prescription strength, especially if the urge to scratch becomes unbearable. Nonsteroidal prescription creams and lotions can be paired with over-the-counter moisturizers in order to seal in necessary wetness. After bathing but before moisturizing, these nonsteroidal topical treatments can be applied on the affected areas (and also used as part of a wet dressing regimen).

Many of these prescription creams help control the itchy side of eczema, a crucial part of treatment since scratching can exacerbate the condition. Many brands don’t have age restrictions, but you should always double-check with your doctor, especially when dealing with young patients. Atopiclair and Mimyx are nonsteroidal prescription creams aimed at treating and moisturizing eczema [source: U.S. News and World Report]. Topical clacineurin inhibitors, like Elidel and Protopic, are a new class of prescription drugs that treat inflammation without steroids [source: Discovery Home and Health].

For those eczema patients, or parents of patients, who prefer to stay away from steroid ointments, a common prescribed route, these creams and lotions can be more appealing options. Your doctor will decipher which treatment makes the most sense based on the patient’s needs and symptoms.

1: Infection Intervention

If you’ve followed these tips, like moisturizing at night and taking short baths, and you still have a severe case of this skin disorder, it may be time to revisit your dermatologist.

Dermatologists and health care professionals will prescribe eczema treatments on a case-by-case basis, usually starting with mild therapies, like OTC moisturizers, and eventually selecting more intense treatments if the condition worsens. Remember that eczema can only be managed, not cured.

As mentioned earlier, doctors may recommend nonsteroidal topical treatments like Elidel or Atopiclair as an added measure to a standard moisturizing regimen. They may prescribe strong topical corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and control itching. These steroidal treatments are available in oral form for severe cases.

If eczema looks very red, swollen, abnormal or covered in pus or a thick crust, skin may be infected. Infections aren’t uncommon when it comes to this skin disorder, and it’s important to check with your dermatologist before moisturizing eczema as per usual. Mild infections may require combination creams that have antibiotics as well as moisturizing agents; severe cases may involve oral antibiotics as well as topical treatments. It’s important to note that if you suspect infection, discontinue the wet dressing method as this may worsen the problem [source: Infection and Eczema].

Learning more about eczema and how your body responds to different moisturizers will help you better manage itchy, dry skin.

Natural Eczema Creams

natural eczema cream and probioticsDiet and Lifestyle

Before we talk about natural eczema creams and topicals, it seems appropriate to start by noting that all the creams in the world won’t make a different unless more preponderant underlying issues are addressed first, specifically dietary and lifestyle factors that are contributing or even causing the immune dysfunction that leads to eczema.

So, just as you would supplement a diet with vitamins it makes sense to address any underlying factors contributing to eczema.

Eczema isn’t easy to treat and there are a variety of potential causes but there are some simple steps that everybody can take and are proven to help.

In my family, my sister suffered from eczema off and on for a long time before she was finally able to get rid of it.  She was given anti-bionics and steroids as a child and this led to problems with her gut flora (good bacteria) which were being expressed in her skin and digestion.  When we heard about the GAPS diet we decided to give it a try and both saw major improvement in our energy levels and mood but more importantly her condition started to dramatically improve.

The GAPS diet is a protocol in “Gut and Psychology” and is essentially an intense nutritional and dietary regiment designed to support the gut lining.  It does this by encouraging the use of foods that heal, support and soothe digestion like bone broth while boosting beneficial gut bacteria with probiotics and fermented foods.

You can learn more about the GAPS diet here.  But even if you don’t want to follow any diet, probiotics are a cheap and simple way to make sure you gut is in working order. You can take them in pill form or just include more fermented foods in your diet, like yoghurt.

For example, one double-blind study examined the use of borage oil (500 mg a day) or placebo in 160 adults with moderate eczema. After 24 weeks, the overall effectiveness was not significantly better with borage oil compared with the placebo.

Natural Eczema Creams

Natural eczema creams and gels are made from herbal ingredients such as kigelia Africana, witch hazel, licorice and chamomile which have shown evidence of reducing eczema symptoms.  The supervening is a list of results from clinical studies:

  • A double-blind study published in the UK compared hydrocortisone 0.5% cream and placebo cream to a cream of kigelia extract.  After 14 days kigelia extract was demonstrated to be superior to both placebo and hydrocortisone.
  • A German study involving 72 people with moderate to severe eczema compared witch hazel extract to 0.5% cortisone cream and placebo.  After two weeks witch hazel proved to be slightly more effective than placebo but inferior to cortisone. This study was double-blind.
  • A double-blind study compared placebo against 1% and 2% concentrations of licorice cream for eczema patients.  Within two weeks both the 1% and 2% creams showed dramatic improvement over the placebo cream and the 2% was even more effective than the 1% in reducing irritation, swelling and itching.
  • Another study compared 0.5% cortisone cream and placebo to chamomile cream.  After two weeks the chamomile was slightly more effective than cortisone in reducing symptoms but substantially more effective than the placebo.  The study was not double-blind so it cannot be considered clinical evidence but inspires promise nevertheless.

Important reminder: consult your physician or skin specialist before using any topical treatment.  Some herbs such as chamomile are known to elicit an allergic reaction.

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