How Can I Control The
Itching Associated With Eczema?
Ask any eczema itching sufferer how they would improve their eczema treatment, and they will most likely say something like “Get rid of this eczema itching!” Without proper treatment the eczema itching associated with eczema outbreaks is often so severe that the sufferer is helpless to avoid scratching. Eczema itching or scratching leads to redness, swelling, and scaling of the affected areas, the skin becomes thickened and begins to crack. The cracked skin then begins to weep, causing further inflammation and more eczema itching. This cycle is an endless one, and the broken, moist skin soon becomes a breeding ground for bacteria. Skin infections are serious and, at the very least, leave permanent scarring of the skin. Hence, prevent eczema itching from getting worse.
Though we still do not know why people with eczema itching over react to irritants (recent research suggests that, in people with eczema itching, there is a malfunction of the immune system, affecting the outer layer of skin) we do know the value of preventing flare ups before they occur. If we focus our eczema itching treatment first on prevention of outbreaks, we can minimize the eczema itching that results. Irritants that cause flare ups (also referred to as triggers) vary person to person, ranging from soaps and chemicals, to pollens and pet dander. Working with their physicians, patients can identify their specific triggers. Once identified, it becomes easier to avoid or limit exposure to them.
Eczema itching treatment
Diligent daily skin care is at the foundation of eczema itching treatment helping not only in prevention of outbreaks, but in reducing eczema itching. Bathing should be done in tepid water using mild soap or a non soap cleanser. Skin should then be patted dry or allowed to air dry. Liberal application of alcohol free creams or ointments applied immediately after bathing will help to contain moisture and prevent drying out of the skin. These should be reapplied as needed throughout the day. Clothing choices must be made in consideration of triggers. Soft cotton is a great choice, especially for clothing that is worn directly next to the skin.
Prevent Eczema Itching from Getting Worse
Eczema itching can also be prevented or reduced by controlling temperatures and humidity in the environment. Becoming overheated and sweating can intensify eczema itching in the summer months and should be avoided. Winter dryness, on the other hand, causes the skin to dry out and crack. Increasing the humidity in the home can help. Distraction with pleasurable activities can be helpful not only for children, but also for adult eczema itching sufferers. Antihistamines may be helpful in reducing the inflammation and eczema itching. An added benefit is the drowsiness is causes, leading to a more peaceful sleep. Other medications are available, both over the counter and by prescription. Because of the potential for adverse affects, benefits must be weighed against risks. Hence prevent eczema itching before things get worse.