What Causes Eczema?

If you have eczema-prone skin, you may find that it can be affected by a range of factors. Here’s how to spot the signs and get your symptoms under control. 

What Causes Eczema?

If you have eczema-prone skin, you may find that it can be affected by a range of factors. Hayfever, changes in temperature, dust and chemicals are just a few elements that can trigger a flare-up, leaving the skin feeling dry, uncomfortable and flaky. The good news is that if you become more familiar with common causes of eczema, you may be able to put some preventative steps in place. Here’s how to spot the signs and get your symptoms under control.

What causes eczema in adults?

Chemicals

Throughout the day, we introduce many chemicals to the skin through shower gels, hand washes, shampoo and even surface cleaners and washing detergents. If you’re unsure of what is causing your eczema to flare up, try swapping out heavily fragranced products for more simple emollient formulations, and wear rubber gloves when washing up or handling other cleaning products. This will help you to identify any irritating chemicals within your daily routine.

Dry skin

It’s important to keep eczema-prone skin fully hydrated at all times with emollients and moisturisers. If the skin gets too dry, scaly and rough, there is more chance of a flare up that may become painful and even infected. Apply a rich moisturising cream, suitable for sensitive and eczema-prone skin throughout the day, as many times as necessary. You may also find that a thermal spring water spray soothes itching and soreness in between applications of cream.

Allergens

Pollen, dust mites, and pet hair can all really irritate the skin and can be eczema triggers. While antihistamines can help to dull the reaction you have, you can also make some easy changes in the home too. When the pollen count is high, try to change your clothes once you come indoors and take a shower. This will help to eliminate any pollen stuck to your hair and clothes. For dust mites, it’s important to wash your bed sheets regularly at a high temperature, and protect the bed with an anti-allergy mattress cover and sheet. You should also hoover regularly and remove any unnecessary clutter such as soft toys. If the family cat or dog is causing a reaction, make sure that the door to your bedroom is always closed, and they are discouraged from sitting on soft furnishings where their hair will stick.

Changes in temperature

Extremely hot and cold temperatures can be a common cause of eczema and leave the skin feeling very sensitive. If you find that your face reacts after a hot shower, try keeping a few face cloths, soaked in chamomile, in a sealed plastic bag within the fridge. Press one to your skin after a shower to help to reduce the temperature and reduce inflammation. Additionally, consider carrying a mini can of thermal spring water spray with you to cool the temperature of the skin when you’re on the go. If harsh colder weather proves problematic, make sure you protect the skin with a rich moisturiser that will keep your skin hydrated throughout the day.

Stress

Many people find that stress is a common trigger for their eczema, but experts aren’t entirely sure why. While the cause may be a bit of a mystery, there are some simple steps you can adopt to help reduce stress levels in the body and help to keep your skin calm. For example, regular exercise can help keep stress and anxiety at bay, as well as releasing feel-good endorphins into the body. You may also find that regular meditation or relaxation practises such as yoga help to relieve tension. If you need a bit of assistance, try downloading an app onto your smart phone or tablet for step-by-step guidance.

This article is intended as general information only. You should seek advice from a professional before altering your diet or starting any new course of conduct.