Winter means snow, woolen sweaters and crackling fires in the fireplace, but it also can mean the return of dry, itchy skin. Cold temperatures, along with overheated homes, cars and offices, cause low humidity which can dry out your skin and worsen eczema symptoms.
Eczema is a general term for any type of dermatitis. Symptoms include extremely dry, itchy, flaky, and/or cracked skin that’s accompanied with redness and inflammation. Some types of eczema can even lead to blisters and weeping skin.
If you struggle from eczema symptoms and flare-ups, winter can be brutal. However, there are some things you can do to help counter winter’s effects on your eczema symptoms.
Stay moisturized! Moisturize your skin several times a day, especially after washing your hands. Moisturizers containing a higher oil content or cermides work well. Before bed, apply moisturizer to your hands and put on pure cotton gloves. Don’t forget to apply moisturizer to your feet, too! Before bed, apply lotion to your feet and put on cotton socks.
Use prescription medications if recommended by your doctor. Flare-ups may require the use of steroid creams.
Take short showers in warm water. Use mild, non-soap cleansers that are fragrance-free and dye-free. Avoid scrubbing your skin. Pat yourself dry lightly with a towel. Immediately apply moisturizer to your skin while it’s still wet.
Use a humidifier. If you use a forced-air heating system in your home, you may need to humidify your air. Keep the humidity level between 45% to 55%.
Wear sunscreen while outside. You can still get sunburned even in the winter. So use a sunscreen of at least 30 SPF on any exposed skin.
Wear gloves outside. If your hands sweat, you may want to wear cotton gloves as a first layer.
Remove wet outer wear as soon as you are able. Damp clothing can irritate your skin causing an eczema flare-up.
Wear comfortable fabrics. Wool and other scratchy fabrics can irritate your skin. Choose cotton or other soft fabric clothing.
Wash all new clothes before wearing them to remove any chemicals. Use detergents designed for sensitive skin that are free of dyes and perfumes. Use chemical-free dryer sheets.
Avoid sweating. While you need to dress warmly and cover as much exposed skin as possible in winter weather, overdressing or getting overheated can worsen your eczema symptoms. Therefore, also avoid sitting near heat sources, like radiators, heaters or fireplaces.
Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
By paying attention to the things that can trigger your eczema symptoms and making changes to reduce flare-ups, hopefully, you’ll reduce your skin irritation and inflammation this winter.
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While ezWalker® Performance Custom Orthotics can’t treat your eczema symptoms, they can help reduce or eliminate pain from other conditions affecting your feet, like plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis, and arch or heel pain. These custom-made orthotics control pronation and guide your feet to a better biomechanical gait with every step you take. Since they’re ultra thin and ¾ length, ezWalker® Custom Orthotics work in all types of shoes from dress to athletic.
By caring for your skin – and your feet, you can reduce painful symptoms this winter. Order your ezWalker® Performance Custom Orthotics today.
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Note: If you follow these recommendations and your symptoms persist, you may have a more serious condition. See your physician for a more complete diagnosis and treatment.