I have some easy tips to help you keep those eczema flare-ups at bay, and an acronym to help you remember!
Eczema flare-ups can be the result of many things, but since they are sometimes due to external factors it is not a bad idea to practice these steps regularly to prevent irritation from occurring. Often steroids are prescribed for eczema relief, though they only treat symptoms and do not necessarily prevent future breakouts. Some simple daily steps can help reduce your chances of getting flare-ups naturally and easily.
These tips are not to cure or treat eczema, but rather to prevent irritation in the first place. Do keep in mind that eczema has so many causes and each person is unique, so there are many factors at play including genetics! While this is not meant to be taken as medical advice, these can be helpful for calming and soothing those nasty flare-ups. You can find what works best for your skin by experimenting with different frequencies, but these are great for daily practice (with the exception of the salt baths).
So here's my handy acronym - McBe - moisturize, clean, bathe, and exfoliate!
Moisturize - Keep the area moisturized to prevent irritation from dry skin and to give skin a healthy defense. Use a good moisturizer that does not contain a lot of fillers, synthetic ingredients, fragrance, or water. The best time to moisturize is immediately following a shower, when skin is damp and pores are still open. You can also massage moisturizers like body oils and body butters into skin in the shower, or add them to a bath for a softening soak.
Clean - Natural yeasts and bacteria on skin can be a common cause for flare-up. You can help prevent these by keeping skin clear of irritating surface debris and dead skin cells. Real soaps made with natural oils are a great choice, and you can often find pH balanced blends. These are blended to be a pH closer to our skin, so these soaps can be less drying and irritating. Trying to avoid harsh detergents, sulfates, and other irritants.
Bathe - Salt baths can be soothing for eczema and rashes. Salts like Dead Sea salt contain lots of minerals including magnesium which is said to be helpful for eczema relief. They also help fight bacteria and other irritants on skin's surface, and can help skin hold more moisture. 1/2 to 1 cup of salt is good per bath, and once per week is a good preventative regimen. You can add a tablespoon or two of a good body oil to make the bath more moisturizing.
Exfoliate - Gentle exfoliation helps remove skin irritants like those yeasts, bacteria, dead skin cells, etc. Exfoliating also promotes circulation which gets blood and nutrients moving through skin. You can use a gentle washcloth, a loofah, or other natural sponge, or even a body scrub. Be sure to check the ingredients for irritants.
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