Winter is nearly here and depending on where you live, it may already be here (weather-wise, if not officially). For people who suffer from eczema, this could be one of the most difficult times of the year. However, if you know the proper steps to take to ensure you have healthier eczema skin in the winter, it doesn't have to be so bad.
Eczema is a skin condition that can affect both children and adults. Most people are born with it, like my youngest son, and it can be made worse by certain conditions, such as allergies or the weather. Since dry skin is characteristic of eczema, winter weather can make the condition worse.
If you or your child has eczema, there are things you can do to help combat the condition in the winter months and heal the skin, making your skin more comfortable. Winter eczema is sometimes also known as "winter itch" and some people with eczema may be able to treat it well during the rest of the years but have real problems and flare-ups come winter.
So what can you do to avoid the "winter itch" and combat winter eczema? First, you need to be able to recognize it. Winter eczema can flare up on even the first cold day. You should search for dry, itchy, red, scaly patches of skin on the body. Be sure to pay attention to spots of skin that start itching when the temperature changes.
Some common places to see patches of winter eczema are behind the knees, around the armpits, behind the ears and the inside of the elbows. Common places where your skin folds and bends will have outbreaks of eczema and applying some moisturizer at the first sign of red skin can help combat winter eczema.
You should check your children for signs of eczema behind the ears since this is a common location and it's often hidden by hair or other clothing. If your hands get dry and suffer from winter eczema, always wear warm gloves when outdoors, wear gloves when doing the dishes and getting your hands wet and use extra moisturizers.
If you wear wool sweaters and other clothing that makes your skin itch, protect your skin with a regular, cotton shirt underneath. Remember that most winter clothing does not allow your skin to breathe as well and can cause irritation, especially when worn all day. Use extra creams and moisturizers to help combat this problem.
Drinking a lot of water and keeping your body hydrated throughout the winter months can also help with dry, itchy skin due to winter eczema. When you take the steps to properly care for your skin, you will be able to treat or reduce your winter eczema.