Living with eczema at any stage in life, whether during childhood or adulthood, can evolve into a severely troublesome skin problem that can take a toll on your physical and mental health. Recurring itchy, dry skin can turn to damaged, red, and raised patches that can lead to agony and embarrassment. Eczema patients can begin to heal themselves from the inside out without the use of harmful chemical creams, however, with these six at-home natural remedies to treat mild to severe eczema in kids and adults.
1. Go On a 30-Day Diet
Typically, skin conditions such as eczema have to do with poor dieting. Eczema food triggers such as eggs, fish, peanuts, and soy are known to help reduce flare-ups, but this can vary from person to person. These foods may also exacerbate eczema because many people cannot properly digest the proteins, which causes an allergic reaction. Eczema patients can go on an allergy-elimination diet for 30 days, says MindBodyGreen, by removing these food triggers that contain gluten and casein (wheat and dairy). Also during this 30-day healing phase, it’s advised to get rid of toxic cleaning products and cosmetics with harmful chemical irritants.
2. Change Up Your Wardrobe
Switching your wardrobe doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on new clothes. Eczema patients can avoid scratchy fibers for softer ones like bamboo, cotton, or silk, which are gentler on the skin. Opting to buy organic fibers can also be a wise, healthy, and eco-friendly alternative. Overall, avoid wearing clothing that is tight, rough, scratchy, or made from wool, to avoid irritation. Dr. David E. Bank, a dermatologist, founder and director of the Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic, and Laser Surgery in Mount Kisco, N.Y., suggests eczema sufferers to first start with switching the products they use for laundry. “Consider switching your laundry detergent to one free of added chemicals and scents,” he told Medical Daily in an email.
3. Take a Magnesium Bath
Red and itchy skin can be alleviated with simple hydration. Bathing allows moisture to enter the skin. After every shower or bath, it is best to use moisturizer in order to seal the moisture in the skin. However, for some eczema sufferers, soaking in water could actually make their condition worst. It is best to be aware of how your skin reacts. The University of Maryland Medical Center advises eczema sufferers to avoid hot baths or showers, and to opt for lukewarm water.
A magnesium bath could not only soothe your skin, but also help eczema patients feel more relaxed. According to a Wellness Mama blog post, simply adding a cup of Epsom salts or magnesium flakes, and a few tablespoons of Himalayan salt can be helpful in skin healing.
The Wellness Mama magnesium bath recipe is:
1/2 cup Himalayan or Sea Salt
1/2 tsp of natural vanilla extract
10-15 drops of essential oil of choice (I love lavender and mint)
4. Apply Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has gained even more popularity for its use in oil pulling, but it has multiple uses such as an eczema natural remedy. “Coconut oil is a wonderful topical solution for itching or mild pain caused by eczema,” Banks said. “It's natural, gentle and can be commonly found at your local health food store.” Simply applying two to three tablespoons of coconut oil daily, especially on the eczema patches, can yield good results. Also, replacing vegetable oil with cold pressed, organic, extra virgin coconut oil in cooking can not only help your skin, but also help you develop better healthy eating habits.
5. Apply Turmeric
The turmeric herb has been used extensively in the treatment of skin disorders. Curcumin — the active ingredient present in turmeric — contains anti-inflammatory and bactericidal properties, says Turmeric for Health. Eczema patients can simply mix turmeric powder with water to cleanse the area infected by the skin condition.
6. Manage Your Stress
People with eczema must cope with the stress and the lack of sleep associated with itchiness during nighttime. However, stress can make the condition worse, so it is best to monitor stress levels to reduce the number of eczema flare-ups. Stress-reducing exercises such as deep breathing, basic yoga exercises, or meditation can help you manage your stress and lessen your need for creams and ointments.
Dr. Jennifer C. Franklin, a psychologist in Durham, N.C., told Medical Daily in an email “the nervous system is highly linked with a variety of skin disorders, including eczema,” which emphasizes the need to manage stress. “In other words, by resolving or even just bringing awareness to a psychological issue that may not be fully conscious or addressed, you can minimize or alleviate all kinds of physiological symptoms, assuming they are more, mostly, or completely psychosomatic in origin,” she said.
Begin to heal eczema from the inside out, and practice these six at-home remedies to reduce flare-ups and breakouts on your skin.