How To Deal With Eczema in summer
Although renowned to be at its worst in winter (when the air is drier… and so too the skin) eczema can (and does!) rear its red, painful and itchy head in summer too. In summer, this is usually thanks to the combination of sweat and heat, which in many cases is unavoidable. Here’s how to deal with eczema on the face and the body when it inevitably rears its head.
What causes eczema?
The bad news about eczema is that once you have it, you have it. It’s not curable, because the affliction is due to genetics but it is manageable. Those genetics are oven linked to an over-reactive immune system which responds to external stressors and irritation with inflammation. However, because the exact cause of eczema is unknown, managing atopic eczema on the face and body is all about knowing your triggers, and doing your best to avoid those.
Some common triggers include: extreme weather, heating and air conditioning, stress, contact with chemicals, harsh soaps and detergent, and also diet. However, two important points to note are: what exacerbates your own eczema will be different for every sufferer, and there also may be a delay in the flare-up, meaning it can be often hard to know what exactly caused it.
How to deal with eczema in summer
While it may be easy to avoid some things that trigger your eczema, others, like the weather, are harder to bypass. But, that doesn’t mean you have to suffer. Here are a few tips on how to manage your eczema in the summer months:
Don’t let your skin get dry: Dryness equate to tightness and tightness equals itchy and sore. Moisturising your skin multiple times a day is an important step as it helps protect the skin barrier, and keep it hydrated.
Rinse off: If you take a dip, whether it’s in the ocean or the pool, make sure you wash off afterwards, and re-moisturise again. Both chlorine and saltwater are notoriously drying.
Cover up: This advice rings true for everyone who wants great skin: stay out of the sun. Aside from it being the number one cause of skin ageing (not to mention we live in the country of melanoma) the heat will only further irritate your condition. Wear breathable, lightweight fabrics a hat, and sunscreen, and avoid being out during the hottest part of the day. When choosing a sunscreen go for a physical or mineral block with an active ingredient of zinc oxide which is known to have a low allergenic profile.
Invest in a humidifier: If you live in a particularly dry state (here’s looking at you SA) or constantly run your air conditioner, you might want to consider using a humidifier at home, which will put moisture back in the air so it won’t be as dry.
Stress less: We understand it can be counterintuitive because eczema is stressful, however stress is one of those things that constantly comes up as being an eczema trigger.
Stay away from known irritants: These can include parabens, sulphates, artificial colours and artificial fragrance – but it can also mean some metals (especially nickel), some fabrics, and even ingredients in things like shampoo or glue. Choose gentle products that are free from all these known ingredients, and if you enjoy a subtle fragrance, opt for a natural low-allergen variant, like our The Goat Skincare Lemon Myrtle Body Wash. Aside from having a zingy, fresh scent, lemon myrtle has also been reported to have antibacterial benefits.
Remember, Australia has no national guidelines for managing eczema so if you do suffer from eczema on the face or the body it’s always best to seek the advice of a healthcare professional such as a dermatologist who will be able to recommend the best treatment plan for you.
Gentle on skin
with a subtle scent
The Goat Skincare Lemon
Myrtle Body Wash