Eczema and Your Skin Barrier
Though it’s sweltering hot outside across most of the country, September marks some big changes that we’re excited about. It’s back-to-school season and time for the weather to start cooling down. Get ready to switch from lemonade to hot chocolate and prepare your skin for cooler weather.
Cold, winter skin gets a lot of attention over the internet, mostly because we’re more pale, dry, red, and flaky. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Keep reading to learn about one of the most important features of your skin and how it can help keep your eczema at bay.
What Is the Skin Barrier?
The visible part of your skin, the stratum corneum, helps keep pollutants, toxic chemicals, UV, and other damaging irritants from getting into your skin and body to cause trouble. When it functions properly, your skin barrier is better able to hold onto moisture. When your skin barrier is compromised or damaged, your skin may appear red or scaly. Your skin may also show damage as sensitivity to certain products that never caused a problem before.
Though we don’t know exactly what causes Eczema, we do know that there are certain issues or situations that can increase your flare ups. If you have Atopic Eczema, then you may know that certain things like harsh laundry detergents, pollen, mold, extreme heat, and stress might be linked to a flare up. With Atopic Eczema, your skin barrier doesn’t function efficiently. The barrier function is compromised, so irritants and allergy-aggravating substances can enter the skin, leading to inflammation and dryness.
Protecting Damaged Skin
If you have Eczema, then you may want to see a dermatologist to learn about what kind you have and how you can manage your flare ups best. You may need to increase your moisturizing rate: the drier your skin is, the more often you will need to apply moisturizer to help increase your skin’s barrier function. If you have severe Eczema, you may find that oral steroids help your symptoms.
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Category: General Dermatology