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After long New York and New Jersey winters, as the weather gets warmer we want to spend more time outdoors. However, for people living with eczema, factors like humidity, heat and sweat can trigger eczema symptoms. Following are 7 tips on how to prevent summer eczema flare-ups. For more information on eczema and the various types of the condition, see our information page:
Sweat has been shown to trigger eczema outbreaks. Some link this to the natural salt in our body’s sweat that irritates the skin and can therefore cause eczema symptoms to appear. While it may be difficult not to sweat, especially in the summer, it is important to shower after exercising, playing sports or spending active time outdoors. It is also important to remember to use a mild, unscented soap and gently pat skin dry so as to not irritate the skin further.
Luckily in the summer we are less likely to wear rougher, heavier materials such as wool, which can be eczema triggers. However, it is still important to check what material your clothing is made of because certain synthetic fibers are known to cause eczema outbreaks. It is best to wear cotton or natural-fiber clothing, as they are less likely to cause eczema flare-ups. Furthermore, it is important to remember to wash new clothes to remove any residual dye or chemicals, which can also be skin irritants. Loose fitting clothing is also better as it helps the skin breathe better and avoids eczema-irritating friction.
Heat and humidity are also common eczema triggers. It is best to avoid the heat and humidity by staying in air conditioning so as not to exacerbate eczema symptoms. This can be difficult in the summer, so if you are going to spend time outside in the heat then it is important to take certain steps to keep cool and not get overheated, like finding a shady spot. Furthermore, while taking a dip in a pool is a great way to cool off, it’s always good to wash the chlorine off immediately to avoid irritating eczema prone skin.
Dry skin is one of the most common eczema triggers. This can be especially true after a cold winter, when our skin typically dries out from low humidity and low temperatures. During the summer, don’t forget to keep up with a moisturizing routine. Since dry skin can irritate and cause eczema symptoms to worsen, it is important to keep skin hydrated. Speak with a skin care expert at Advanced Dermatology to find out the best moisturizing routine for you.
While it’s tempting to do a major spring or summer cleaning after a long winter, dust can be a common eczema trigger. This is not to say that you shouldn’t clean. In fact, people struggling with eczema should clean often as part of their eczema treatment plan in order to avoid the accumulation of dust. Also, getting rid of carpeting, rugs, and blinds, which all accumulate lots of dust can help eczema symptoms. In addition, washing bed linens and curtains weekly in hot water and cleaning your whole bedroom in general can help manage symptoms.
With beautiful spring and summer also comes pollen. People that have atopic dermatitis eczema can have flare-up triggers from pollen. It is important to avoid going outside and keep windows closed when pollen counts are high. After going outside, taking a shower to wash the pollen off your skin and hair can also be helpful, as well as changing your clothes. If you also suffer from seasonal skin allergies, a specialist at Advanced Dermatology can help you get both conditions under control.
While it might be relaxing to take a long hot shower at the end of the day, try to avoid this typical eczema trigger. This is probably easier to do in the summer. The heat that rises outside a tepid shower can actually be quite calming. Moderate water temperature can also help reduce eczema outbreaks since hot water can irritate the skin. After you shower don’t forget to apply a moisturizer or emollient while the skin is still damp. This locks in the moisture and can help improve skin that is aggravated by eczema.
Advanced Dermatology is committed to offering patients the best skin care solutions. With offices near Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens and Westchester, Advanced Dermatology provides medical treatments that can help control eczema so you can look your best this summer. To book a consultation, contact our expert staff today: