Don’t have a night of eczema like the HBO hit show The Night Of!
Caring for Eczema in Winter
A chronic skin condition like eczema can be challenging during the cold winter months. Eczema becomes worse during the winter months due to the extreme temperatures. Typically eczema is seen as flaky patches of skin. If you suffer don’t stress; it can be effectively calmed and reduced with the right types of skin care.
What is Eczema?
Eczema, sometimes referred to as dermatitis, is a cluster of skin conditions that have varying symptoms, the most common of which is dry skin. Normal skin produces oils that create a barrier to prevent water loss and stop irritants from penetrating the skin. If you have eczema, your skin does not do this as effectively. Eczema, has a wider range of symptoms. It’s also a chronic skin condition and it often has redness, swelling, itching, dryness, rashes and more. While the cause is unknown, symptoms can be triggered by the use of certain skin care products and environmental conditions, especially the drying conditions frequently experienced during cold, windy winter months.
Here are the various types with their symptoms:
Atopic Eczema: Dryness, itchiness (pruritus), redness, inflammation. If infected, skin may crack and weep.
Allergic Contact Dermatitis: Dry, itchy skin; redness, inflammation, rash, or blistering.
Irritant Contact Dermatitis: Itchy, dry skin; rash—usually on hands but can be seen on feet due to irritation from sock or materials in shoes.
Varicose (Asteatotic) Eczema: Affects the lower legs. Appears on the skin around the shins and ankles. Skin is itchy, inflamed and speckled. Ulcers can occur.
Discoid (Nummular) Eczema: Coin-shaped, reddened area. Normally appears suddenly on lower legs or trunk. Can be itchy and weep fluid.
What Causes This?
In atopic eczema, the most common form of eczema, the exact cause is unknown, but it is generally thought that people inherit a tendency toward the disorder. People with atopic eczema are generally sensitive to allergens in the environment that others find harmless. It is also closely linked with asthma and hay fever. The symptoms can be set off by a number of triggers.
In Allergic Contact Dermatitis, the immune system responds to a substance that comes in contact with the skin. Common allergens include poison ivy and oak, nickel and other metals, perfume, sunscreens, rubber.
In Irritant Contact Dermatitis, the cause is contact with everyday substances, such as bleaches, caustic detergents, chemicals, soap. Exposure to tar or certain plant juices, including celery, lime, and parsley, in conjunction with light can cause phototoxic reaction.
Varicose (Asteatotic) Eczema can be the result of poor venous circulation.
Discoid (Nummular) Eczema has no known cause and is associated with dry skin that worsens in dry weather.
How Winter Months affects Eczema?
Eczema is often experienced only in the fall and winter. This is due to the drying effects of the season. Cold winds on exposed skin can aggravate the condition. Strong heat in buildings and at home can cause dryness of the skin.
Best Product Ingredients for Winter Months
For those who prone to eczema flare ups, especially during the winter, it is important to use products that will not only moisturize and heal the skin, but also contains ingredients that will be less likely to trigger a negative reaction or flare up.
Chamomile can reduce symptoms of eczema, promote healing, and moisturize the skin. It is also good for anyone with sensitive skin.
Witch hazel is both antiseptic and moisturizing and is beneficial after cleaning and before moisturizing to minimize the risk of infection. Witch hazel can be soothing to skin that is itchy or irritated. Try using a moisturizer with witch hazel to soothe skin daily.
By using the right products and being aware of the best ingredients to use, those with eczema can easily minimize the effects that winter has on these conditions. Listen to Your Body
As with dry skin, the first line of treatment against eczema is emollient therapy. When emollients are used correctly, mild to moderate symptoms of eczema can be controlled without having to resort to stronger measures, such as steroids.
Many doctors recommend steroids to control severe symptoms. While steroids can dramatically improve the condition, there can also be a rebound inflammatory response when they are discontinued. Hydrocortisone cream is a topical steroid that is available over the counter without a prescription. It is one of the weaker steroid creams. You may want to try this before resorting to prescription-strength steroids. I do not recommend steroid use for long periods of time.
Antihistamines can also help relieve itching and may help you get some sleep, but again, I do not recommend ongoing reliance on these. Some eczema sufferers have also successfully used light therapy. Ask your doctor if either of these are good short-term therapies for your eczema; caution should be exercised with exposure to light, as some dermatitis conditions are photosensitive.
The following are standard treatments for the various types of eczema:
Atopic Eczema: Emollients, topical steroids, behavior modification.
Allergic Contact Dermatitis: Prevent contact with allergen. Use topical ointments or steroid creams.
Irritant Contact Dermatitis: Avoid irritants, keep skin moisturized.
Adult Seborrheic Eczema: Anti-fungal shampoos and creams.
Varicose (Asteatotic) Eczema: Emollients, steroid creams.
Discoid (Nummular) Eczema: Emollients, steroid creams.
Here are some steps you can take to make the condition less aggravating:
Keep a positive attitude: Negative emotions start a hormonal cascade that can trigger or worsen your symptoms.
Wear natural fabrics: Cotton and other soft, natural fabrics can limit irritation. Avoid wool and synthetic fabrics.
Do not scratch: Scratching can lead to infection.
Reduce household irritants: Try to get rid of dust, dust mites, fur and dander from pets by vacuuming often, using air filters and keeping your house clean. You may also want to use anti-allergenic bedding.
Use gentle washing powders: Avoid harsh detergents and scented cleansers.
Try relaxation therapy: Relaxation therapy and massage therapy modalities can help by reducing muscle tension. This can lead to less aggravation and other detrimental psychological factors that contribute to flare ups.
Keep your bedroom cool: Overheating aggravates itching. So does dry air. You may want to use a humidifier or keep a saucer of water in each room to keep moisture in the air. If you heat with a woodstove, place a kettle of water on top to release steam and check it often.
AllCare Foot & Ankle Announces Addition of Pressure Wave Therapy
Highly Effective Non-Surgical Treatment for Heel Pain and Achilles Tendon Pain
AllCare Foot & Ankle is excited to announce the addition of a highly effective non-surgical treatment for foot and ankle pain. Pressure Wave technology also known as Shockwave and EPAT is a modern treatment method whereby high-energy sound waves are introduced into the painful areas of the lower extremity. It is one of the most advanced non-invasive treatment methods cleared by the FDA. The treatment works by helping to improve the regenerative potential, enhancing blood circulation to regenerate damaged tissue.
Pressure Wave can successfully address acute and chronic pain such as: Heel Pain, Foot Pain, Ankle Pain, Neuroma, Fascitis, Ankle Sprain, and Achilles Tendon. Outside of Podiatry, this modality is used in providing trigger point therapy, address sports injuries such as Golfers or Tennis Elbow, scar tissue, stress fractures, enhance bone healing, sexual function and more.
Pressure Wave therapy reports a 91% success rate (as per clinical studies), it is non-invasive, no anesthesia is required, there is no risk of infection, no scarring, no downtime, it is cost effective and results in faster, easier healing.
Beneficial effects are often experienced after only 1 or 2 treatments. Many patients experience immediate pain relief after just one treatment. Patients treated report being pain free and/or have a significant reduction in pain. The non-surgical therapy for pain eliminates pain and restores mobility, thus improving patient’s quality of life.
Not all pressure wave devices are the same. AllCare Foot & Ankle has now added the world's most advanced pressure wave technology. Manufactured in Switzerland by world renowned Storz Medical, with 75 years of medical research and development behind it, their device is the gold standard of pressure wave technology.
Pressure Wave therapy has a proven success rate that can be as effective or more effective than other methods such as surgery or pharmaceuticals without the risks, complications or long recovery times.
Call our office today at 732-695-3668 to learn more about how Pressure Wave Therapy can address your pain, accelerate your healing and optimize your health. Or visit our website at http://www.allcarefootandankle.com/heel-pain.html#popup
How common is flatfoot in kids?
Developmental flatfoot is very common in children and teenagers. It’s a warning sign of serious foot dysfunctions. If you recognize it early and nip it in the bud, you can save many costly and painful foot issues in the future for your children.
â€‹How do I know if my kid has flat feet?
One of the easiest ways to tell is to look at your OWN feet. If your family has a history of flat feet, there is a good chance your children will develop them as well. Kids with flat feet tend to have problems with balance, coordination, pain and fatigue in their feet and poor posture.
What can you do about it?
One of the easiest, cheapest and most conservative ways to correct foot problems in children is the use of a medical device called an orthotic. We have found over time the 2 best orthotic for children on the market today and have brought them into our office at AllCare Foot & Ankle for your convenience. We recommend starting a child with a prefabricated orthotic. The 2 styles we have are just for children from toddler age to pre-teens. This means they have a very deep heel cup designed to maximize rear foot control and realign the Achilles tendon while giving great arch support and little discomfort. Once your child acclimates to the orthotics, they don’t even notice them in their shoes. They are light, sleek and fit in most shoes so that no one even knows they are in there from the outside! Note that we mentioned the shoes. It’s very important that children wear the medical devices in their shoes…and that means not running barefoot all summer or in thin flip flops every day.â€‹
Will my kids are grow out of their orthotic?
Yes, they will eventually grow out of them. However, that is one of the benefits of prefabricated orthotics. They are not a huge financial burden. Also, if your child requires a custom type orthotic, there are outgrowth program options so that your wallet is not impacted as much.
The important thing to remember is that these are an investment in your children’s health. Luckily, they are not an expensive investment like orthodontics, but you can think about them similarly to dental work and eyeglasses. Necessary for your child’s social and health development.
This website includes materials that are protected by copyright, or other proprietary rights. Transmission or reproduction of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use, as defined in the copyright laws, requires the written permission of the copyright owners.