Eczema is a non-contagious skin condition that affects a large proportion of the population. Itching, dryness, redness, inflammation... The skin reactions are numerous and they quickly become unbearable. Fortunately, nature is full of resources to relieve our various body ailments!
However, it is still best to seek medical advice for treatment and monitoring of eczema.
UNDERSTANDING SKIN WITH ECZEMA
In France, eczema affects approximately 2.5 million people and represents 30% of the reasons for dermatological consultation. This inflammation of the skin manifests itself chronically or in outbreaks, and is manifested by redness, scales, small blisters, very dry skin, inflammation and itching. The skin's barrier is very weakened and fragile. Eczema is a vicious circle for sufferers: it itches, you scratch, the symptoms get worse, you scratch more and it becomes difficult to get rid of. Eventually, the skin thickens, it becomes more vulnerable to infection and pigmentation may change slightly. Eczema can appear at an early age, even in infants. It is more common in children than in adults. Eczema can occur on different parts of the body such as the face, hands, elbows and knees.
Here are the 2 most common forms of eczema:
- Atopic eczema or atopic dermatitis: this is the most common form of eczema and mainly affects children. This eczema is genetic and occurs with chronic attacks. In adolescence, it disappears, but it is possible that the disease continues into adulthood. Atopic dermatitis is more common in people who live in urban areas.
- Contact eczema or contact dermatitis: This type of eczema is triggered by contact with an irritant or allergenic element on the skin. Contact dermatitis can affect anyone, regardless of age.
Genetic predisposition is one of the main causes of eczema. But this skin condition can be triggered by other factors such as stress, anxiety, allergens in textiles or products, allergy to animals, dust, pollen, excessive hygiene (repeated use of water). Eczema is also often linked to other diseases such as allergic rhinitis, asthma and food allergies.
RELIEVING THE SKIN WITH NATURAL REMEDIES
Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich foods are welcome on our plate! They help relieve itching and also prevent it. Our anti-eczema shopping list includes: red fruits, apples, beets, artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, carrots, peppers, legumes such as lentils, fish rich in omega 3 (salmon, herring, sardines), dark chocolate, kefir, oolong tea, nuts and dried fruit. Reduce the consumption of overly processed and industrial foods, gluten, fats (cooked butter, fresh cooked cream, margarine). We reduce sugar and lactose intake. Finally, we adopt a good hydration of our body by drinking 1.5 L of water per day.
Eczema-prone skin needs to be pampered as much as possible with moisturising but above all nourishing skin care products. Applying a cream or vegetable oil helps protect the skin by strengthening its hydrolipidic film, which is very damaged by eczema, and sometimes even non-existent. It is important to moisturise the skin in the evening and morning (ideally after showering), with a thick layer of nourishing material. Proper skin moisturization also helps to reduce the frequency and intensity of inflammatory flare-ups.
Choosing a moisturizer
The use of natural and certified organic moisturizing creams is strongly recommended in order to avoid allergenic and chemical ingredients, which may further damage the skin. At Akane, our organic cold cream, Nourishing Muesli Cream, is composed of 8 plant oils specially selected to respond to the discomfort of skins tightened by eczema and dryness. Soothed and nourished, your skin gradually regains its suppleness and softness!
The choice of vegetable oils
Plant oils are full of benefits for caring for eczematous skin. Below is a list of 10 plant oils you can use daily to soothe, nourish, help heal and prevent future eczema flare-ups:
Aloe vera jelly concentrates all the benefits that a skin suffering from eczema needs: moisturizing, healing, soothing, regenerating. This miraculous plant prevents itching and soothes inflammation. At Akane, our organic aloe vera gel is composed of 95% pure aloe vera juice in order to fully benefit from its virtues. Concerning its use, apply the aloe vera locally on the affected area and repeat the application several times a day.
Beware of clothing
Avoid tight-fitting clothes, synthetic materials and wool. Although it is a natural textile, wool is far too irritating for sensitive skin. Cotton, silk and linen are the preferred materials. To protect our skin and limit reactions, the ideal is to wear a t-shirt under your sweater. When washing clothes, it is best to choose a hypoallergenic detergent and limit the use of fabric softeners.
When cleaning the body or face, the key word is to use lukewarm water, not hot. Hot water dries out the skin and causes additional itching. As for the choice of soap, we banish the shower gels of large surfaces. Instead, choose a superfatted shower gel or a cold-saponified soap bar. These washing products are much gentler on the skin. Saponified soaps have the advantage of being entirely biodegradable and their manufacture is more respectful of the environment.
For the face, the same golden rule applies: we prefer natural products in accordance with our skin in order to avoid allergenic components. At Akane, our organic face cleanser with aloe vera gently cleanses your skin without drying it out. This cleanser is ideally designed to meet the needs of very sensitive and reactive skin.
After cleansing your face, soothe your skin by spraying a little soothingfloral water such asrose, lavender or chamomilewater.
Finally, for the body as well as the face, when drying the skin, do not rub it vigorously, dry it delicately with a cotton towel by dabbing.
Healing the body with the mind
In some cases, the appearance of eczema is linked to a period of stress and anxiety. Yoga, meditation, relaxation and breathing exercises can help relieve tension, release stress, and refocus on oneself and one's well-being. These activities have beneficial effects in relieving the body of eczema by reducing itching and preventing the onset of new inflammation.
Just like vegetable oils, essential oils are also very beneficial for relieving eczema. The use of essential oils helps to alleviate and combat the symptoms of eczema, and also helps the skin to better cope with future outbreaks so that it can better defend itself. Here is the list of essential oils adapted for eczema:
- tea tree oil (antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, soothing)
- rose geranium essential oil (soothing, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial)
However, be careful when using them because these oils are powerful and misuse could amplify the symptoms. To take advantage of their benefits, mix a few drops of essential oil with your face cream or with a vegetable oil such as sweet almond oil. As for the proportions, plan on 2 drops of essential oil for a good tablespoon of vegetable oil.