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I am copying and pasting an article I found on familydoctor.org below about eczema. Original article is at Eczema: Tips on How to Care for Your Skin -- familydoctor.org

Limit your contact with things that can irritate your skin.
Some things that may irritate your skin include household cleansers, detergents, aftershave lotions, soap, gasoline, turpentine and other solvents. Try to avoid contact with things that make you break out with eczema. Because soaps and wetness can cause skin irritation, wash your hands only when necessary, especially if you have eczema on your hands. Be sure to dry your hands completely after you wash them.

Wear gloves to protect the skin on your hands.
Wear vinyl or plastic gloves for work that requires you to have your hands in water. Also, wear gloves when your hands will be exposed to anything that can irritate your skin. Wear cotton gloves under plastic gloves to soak up sweat from your hands. Take occasional breaks and remove your gloves to prevent a buildup of sweat inside your gloves.
Wear gloves when you go outside during the winter. Cold air and low humidity can dry your skin, and dryness can make your eczema worse.

Wear clothes made of cotton or a cotton blend.
Wool and some synthetic fabrics can irritate your skin. Most people with sensitive skin feel better in clothes made of cotton or a cotton blend.

Care for your skin in the bath or shower.
Bathe only with a mild soap, such as Dove, Basis or Oil of Olay. Use a small amount of soap when bathing. Keep the water temperature cool or warm, not hot. Soaking in the tub for a short time can be good for your skin because the skin's outer layer can absorb water and become less dry. Soak for 15 to 20 minutes. Then use a soft towel to pat your skin dry without rubbing. Immediately after drying, apply a moisturizer to your skin. This helps seal in the moisture.

Use the medicine your doctor has prescribed for you.
When your eczema flares up (gets worse), use the medicine prescribed by your doctor. Use it right after bathing. Medicine used to treat eczema is usually a steroid medicine that you rub on your skin. Follow your doctor's directions for using this medicine or check the label for proper use. Call your doctor if your skin does not get better after 3 weeks of using the medicine.

Use a moisturizer on your skin every day.
Moisturizers help keep your skin soft and flexible. They prevent skin cracks. A plain moisturizer is best. Avoid moisturizers with fragrances (perfume) and a lot of extra ingredients. A good, cheap moisturizer is plain petroleum jelly (such as Vaseline). Use moisturizers that are more greasy than creamy, because creams usually have more preservatives in them.
Regular use of a moisturizer can help prevent the dry skin that is common in winter.

Avoid scratching or rubbing the itchy area.
Try not to scratch the irritated area on your skin even if it itches. Scratching can break the skin. Bacteria can enter these breaks and cause infection.

Avoid getting too hot and sweaty.
Too much heat and sweat can make your skin more irritated and itchy. Try to avoid activities that make you hot and sweaty.

Learn how to manage stress in your life.
Eczema can flare up when you are under stress. Learn how to recognize and cope with stress. Stress reduction techniques can help. Changing your activities to reduce daily stress can also be helpful.

Continue skin care even after your skin has healed.
The area where you had the eczema may easily get irritated again, so it needs special care. Continue to follow the tips in this handout even after your skin has healed.


Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff.
Source
American Academy of Family Physicians
 

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Hi everyone! My name is Joanne. Well, my story of eczema is probably pretty similar to everyone else with one exception, I beleive I fixed myself.


Since I was a child, I suffered from severe eczema. In later years, the Doctors added in Contact Dermititis and Stress which added to my itching, scratching and agony! (Really, it was agony!!!)

I went to more doctors than I can shake a stick at. I tried all the prescription creams, pills, soaks, rubs, everything they could throw at me. The ONLY relief I got from them that actually "helped" me (slightly) was a heavy does of benadryl which would knock me out every night so I can sleep without waking 20 times scratching so bad that I would make my own skin bleed. (yuck). I couldn't take it during the day because I would just want to sleep!


Well, after all this mess, pain, embarrassment, yes, embarrassment... my hands, arms and often around my eyes, were so red, inflamed, scabby, and dry, I didn't even want to go out in public!!! Anyway, after all that, a friend of mine was telling me how she made her own soaps, bath bombs, and other skin care goodies. She insisted that I try making some as a little hobby crafty thing to do with my daughter. I told her she was out of her mind and that my skin would fall off! (no kidding)

She bugged me and bugged me until finally I tried it with my daughter. We ran do to the craft store, bought all the supplies my friend told me to get and dug in. We made bath bombs. I used exactly what she recommended, which included Fragrance Oils that scared me with my reactions to scents....

So, we did it. We made about a dozen bath bombs that first night. I felt pretty good and just went to bed. The next morning I woke up pretty rested (without my sleeping pill) and my hands felt pretty good too. No weeping, oozing, pain, and the redness subsided. My daughter was so impatient to try her new treat and had me draw her a bath. We dropped in the fizzy and she soaked for about an hour!
I sat there with her for a while with my feet hanging in the tub (which I never do since my feet like to itch, burn and crack if I take a bath for more than 5 minutes!) Well, it felt great! No reaction.

Hum... I was puzzled. My hands felt good, my feet felt good... hum...


My daughter loved her bath. So the next thing to do was to, Make More! <lol> That night, the same thing... went to sleep with no meds and woke up great! No itching in my sleep, feeling great in the morning, and wow, my hands were even better that day! We repeated this all week long. By the end of the week, my hands were totally awesome! Holy cow! Not a sign of redness, not an itch, nothing!!! Just Perfect! I haven't seen that in YEARS!!!!

Now I was hooked. I called my girlfriend and thanked her so much for the push! Of course I got other recipes for things from her and started making my own soaps.

I will tell you, in the past 3 years (since I started), I have NOT suffered from eczema at all! I have not taken any benadryl since (with the exception of having a head cold last winter).

I will never ever use another soap, lotion, perfume, etc from the stores again with all the chemicals and preservatives that, which is my conclusion, is what caused all my reactions! I now make them all myself and love them! Of course my friends love them too. (They are the ones who pushed me into selling my products to the public.)

My suggestion to anyone suffering like I had, go natural! Forget the fancy labels, high prices, and all that and buy natural! Remember, read the labels!!! Many stores, including Wal Mart, offer natural and organic products, but to list your product as organic, it only has to be about 75% organic... meaning, MANY contain those same yucky preservatives that made my skin crawl to extend their shelf life in the stores!

I would suggest buying from a good natural store near you (or from others like me, or just make them yourself if you have the time and patience).

I hope this information helps someone! I know the agony you are going through!!!

Have a super day!

Joanne
 

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Thank you for sharing your story! I am so happy that you found out how to treat yourself. I have learned the hard way that doctors don't always look out for their patients best interest. And often, they arn't even knowledgable enough about certain skin conditions.

How long do the natural products last if they dont have any perservatives?
 

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Thank you for sharing your story! I am so happy that you found out how to treat yourself. I have learned the hard way that doctors don't always look out for their patients best interest. And often, they arn't even knowledgable enough about certain skin conditions.

How long do the natural products last if they dont have any perservatives?
I believe Doctors mean well, but when you go repeatedly for the same problem, that's when I think some of them turn a blind ear thinking maybe you are just blowing things out of proportion, even when they can physically SEE the problem on the skin, they don't know the mental anguish it can cause, especially with no sleep! Never mind how embarrassing, and painful it can be.

Preservatives are necessary, but I chose the natural type! I use Vitamin E, which is wondeful for your skin anyway, and Rosemary Extract. Both extend the shelf life of my products. I make everything fresh when ordered, so chances are, you will use it up before you have to worry about it. Some items like natural soaps, can last almost forever even without preservatives.

ONCE I tried a chemical preservative... my hands burned instantly, and I through the entire batch of lotion and the preservative in the trash! Never ever again! I proved my own point to myself back then.... Natural is the way to go for me.

Thanks for the reply.


Joanne
 

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I have to grandsons, two brothers that have eczema real extreme. I would be interested in more recipes, we all ready make soap and that helps, the bath bombs sound great. Any help would be great, the older one is in school and having problems because of his skin.

BeBeJ
 

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Hi BebeJ,
I remember replying to your post but it's not here? ...

I'm sorry your grandsons are suffering. I've had eczema in severe cycles on/off since I was a toddler. I know how debilitating it can be.

What type of eczema do they have & where?
 

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I also was living on benadryl when I had severe eczema last summer. I think one time I went in I even scared the dermatologist (that's when he put me on prednisone for 10 days). I found that the flax seed oil, cal/mag, neem oil capsules and probiotics helped me to sleep and I could take them in middle of night too to fall back to sleep.
 

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I'm glad to mentioned the fact that doctors do not always have the patients best interest, because I thought it was me being impatient.
the doctor has giving me the same type of medication to help my eczema and yet the results should have extremely better rather than the way it is.
Then I perhaps thought it maybe something to do with my diet. I understand there are different types of eczema with different types of causes to flare ups.
So I thought I would mention my eating habits.
Usually I eat not that much healthy food despite my concern for my health
.
I often eat chocolate however haven't drunken hot chocolate in a while, and now I have turned to peppermint tea.
I come from a carribbean background, so majority of the foods I eat of things like chicken, fish, rice, potatoes, and other types of food.
Recently I have tried to take as much water a day as possible but I still cant manage to drink 6 cups a day, however I have realised my skin seems quite a bit moist when I drink water. And plus the only thing that has gotten me into water is because I around my exam period, (taking my GCSE's) and I've tried to stay away from highly concentrated drinks with additives and heavy meals.
Is there anything else you could suggest in regards to lifestyle, because the previous information has been great even though I have tried to stick to it.
 

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* Herbal teas that have a reputation for aiding skin conditions by nourshing and cooling the blood and skin include chamomile, red clover, nettle, chickweed and marigold (Calendula).
* Blue flag root compound (containing flag lily, burdock and sarsparilla) may be taken in tablet form to ease ski problems. The recommended dose is one tablet to be taken after meals three times daily. It should be given to children under twelve years of age, and use is to be avoided in pregnancy.
* Skin tablets containing burdock root and wild pansy may ease the irritation and discomfort of dry eczema. The recommended daily with water. however, because of the risk of gastrointestinal upsets, the tablets should not be given to children, or used in pregnancy without the strict supervision of a herbal practitioner.
You can get more home remedies by checking this link:
SKIN CARE -
 

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I'd like to suggest a cream my sister found browsing the net. My daughter has very bad eczema and we've tried everything! My sister came across this site lifetimebeautysupplies(dot)com and bought a cream called 'Lauren's body butter'.

It works like a charm! It took about 4 days to see the results, but my daughter's skin is unbelievable! I cried when I started seeing her real skin again, as she's only 4 years old!

Anyway, I'd like to recommend it for anyone suffering from extreme eczema as its a superb product. We've bought a box full! Don't want to run out!

Nini
 

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  • Take lukewarm baths or showers – baths are preferable.
  • Donâ€2122t use soap, as the ingredients may aggravate your eczema. Use soap-free products, such as sorbolene cream, as effective and gentle alternatives.
  • Bath oils can help to moisturise the skin while bathing.
  • Do not wash the hair in the bath as shampoo will irritate eczema on the skin.
  • Even the use of warm water alone, without any added soap or cleansing agent, is enough in most cases.
  • When towelling dry, pat rather than rub.
 

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I'd like to suggest a cream my sister found browsing the net. My daughter has very bad eczema and we've tried everything! My sister came across this site lifetimebeautysupplies(dot)com and bought a cream called 'Lauren's body butter'.

It works like a charm! It took about 4 days to see the results, but my daughter's skin is unbelievable! I cried when I started seeing her real skin again, as she's only 4 years old!

Anyway, I'd like to recommend it for anyone suffering from extreme eczema as its a superb product. We've bought a box full! Don't want to run out!

Nini
Nini, they don't list the ingredients on the site. Would you share those with us?
 

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For years I suffered with ecezma on my hands. I have seen three dermatologists, had shots, and tried about five different prescription creams and salves. Some caused a little improvement, but not for long. The dry oozing, peeling, beeding, painful leasions always have returned with a vengence.
Recently a friend gave me a dab of her hand cream when I complained of my dry hands. The cream was kinda slimy, but it had a pleasand odor and absorbed into my skin quickly. Amazingly, the next day my dry skin condition was gone! I asked my friend what the miracle cream was and where I could get it. It was a Mary Kay product which luckily she sells, so I was able to get some without too much effort. It is Mary Kay's Extra Emollient NIght Crean. I now put a little dab on my hands in the morning and at night. In several weeks, I have seen no sign of the condition that plagued me so long! I don't know if it will work on everyone, but if it helps just one the way it has helped me, it's a good thing.
 

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I've had eczema off and on for 60 years. All the information posted has been very good, and I'd like to add something else - beware of saunas or any other dry heat. My early childhood eczema first occurred as a result of standing near fireplaces or furnaces. I'm sensitive to many of the things posted, but saunas are the absolute worst. I learned that lesson the hard way. I also let someone else roast hot dogs or marshmallows for me.
 

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I have noticed improvement in my skin dryness & itching over the last couple of months since I put a chlorine filter on my shower. The peeling improved right away & itching reduced after about 3 weeks. I read that skin, our largest organ, absorbs as much chlorine during a 5 minute shower as we'd get by drinking 8 glasses of chlorinated water. I've filtered my drinking water for years so I was spurred to act. The filter I got lasts for about a year and cost less than $40. I got it online at a "green" store. There are many other kinds, I'm sure. This was easy to put on - no tools, less than 5 minutes.
 
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