Eczema is a term for a group of medical conditions that cause the inflammation and irritation of the skin. It manifests itself through redness and itchy skin which may or may not be painful. The redness and itchy, flaky skin affect your physical appearance, thus making you depressed or socially isolated. While medication can temporarily provide relief, do try natural remedies like using castor oil for Eczema and avoid the side-effects of pharmaceuticals. Castor oil for Eczema is one of the effective options towards relief. Castor oil possesses cleansing, moisturizing, antimicrobial, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties that support it in treating eczema.
Types of eczema:
Based on the cause of the disorder, targeted age group and target areas in the body, eczema is of five kinds mentioned as follows:
Atopic Dermatitis: It is the most common form of eczema. It is characterized by inflamed and persistently itchy skin. It commonly affects individuals with a family history of the disease, various allergies, and those with hypersensitive reactions to allergens.
- Dyshidrotic Eczema: This condition results in increased itching and irritation of the feet and hands, often accompanied by the development of crater-like blisters that pain and itch.
- Seborrheic Eczema: It is a type of skin inflammation that involves characteristics such as oily, yellow- colored, scaly marks or patches on the skin.
- Contact Eczema: Itching, redness and burning sensations characterize this type of dermatitis in skin parts that have come into contact with specific allergens.
- Nummular Eczema: This kind of Eczema is characterized by prolonged inflammation of the skin and primarily tends to affect older adults on the back, arms, and parts of the lower abdomen.
Causes of Eczema:
The exact cause of Eczema is yet to be discovered. Currently, it is assumed to be linked to an overactive response by the immune system of the body to an irritant. It is the response that causes the symptoms of eczema. In simple words, eczema is caused as a result of the reaction of our body to the attacking microorganism. Eczema can also be caused due to inheritance. Members of the families with records of allergies or asthma are commonly seen to be affected by this disease. However, eczema is not contagious.
Symptoms of Eczema
- Almost all kinds of eczema are itchy. Sometimes, itching may start before rashes appear.
- Rashes commonly appear on the face, back of the knees, wrists, hands or feet. Even though rashes most commonly appear at these areas, other areas are also vulnerable to outbreaks.
- Besides itching and rashes, other symptoms confirm Eczema. Areas affected by eczema appear very dry, thick or scaly.
- The symptoms differ with the skin tone of the individuals. In fair-skinned people, affected areas initially appear reddish, and then turn brown. Among dark-skinned people, eczema affects pigmentation, making the affected area lighter or darker.
What is Castor oil?
Castor oil is extracted from castor beans. It is widely used in the preparation of massage oils, soaps, cosmetics etc. It is known to have amazing medicinal and traditional uses. It has various properties that help cure a wide range of disorders.
Moreover, oil is natural and does not have any added chemicals. Castor oil is readily available in markets making it easy to use at home. You can use castor oil for curing eczema without much effort or expense.
Why use castor oil for eczema?
Castor oil reduces inflammation, hydrates and moisturizes the skin, and relieves pain. You can also use it for the treatment of skin infections like Eczema. Castor oil possesses a unique chemical composition that makes it ideal for the treatment of symptoms of Eczema. It has antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory effects which, when used properly, can cure eczema.
- Castor oil contains ricinoleic acid that has anti-inflammatory properties and can efficiently give relief from pain.
- Undecylenic acid present in the castor oil thwarts infectious bacteria and fungi.
- Castor oil possesses an incredible healing ability.
- The fatty acids packed in castor oil locks moisture over the skin and reduce itching.
- Castor oil reduces scars and lightens the appearance of eczema flare-ups.
- Castor oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acid that stimulates healthy tissue growth and hydrates the itchy skin.
- Castor oil has an excellent astringent ability that helps remove dirt from skin pores.
Castor oil has a viscous consistency. The stickiness of the oil adds to its property of healing and soothing the symptoms of eczema. The viscous texture of castor oil helps it to stay put and deeply penetrate skin tissue. Castor oil penetrates the layers of the skin and nourishes it with fatty acids. Castor oil efficiently treats dry, leathery skin patches that develop due to eczema.
How to use castor oil for eczema?
You can apply castor oil on eczema affected areas in many ways. Some of those are mentioned below:
- Mix Castor oil with sweet orange essential oil. The mixture can then be applied gently on the affected areas and left for drying.
- Castor oil can also be directly applied to the skin for reducing inflammation caused by eczema. Using it is very simple. Just wash the affected areas properly, dry it and gently apply castor oil. Do not massage. Keep the castor oil applied for some time and then wipe it with a soft cloth. Castor oil has a persisting foul smell. Using rosewater or any moisturizer can eliminate that smell.
- Castor oil can be mixed with coconut oil, and the mixture can be applied to the affected areas after they are perfectly washed and dried.
- Castor oil can be mixed with many other oils like jojoba, olive, grapeseed, almond, sunflower, and tea tree to make mixtures that act efficiently on the symptoms of eczema.
Castor oil is widely available in the market. However, you should only buy from trusted brands as adulterated castor oil can have an adverse effect on your health. It is always advisable to consult a health care professional before applying castor oil for eczema.
Do’s and Don’ts
- Store castor oil in recommended storage temperatures as it can affect its chemical composition, which can be harmful.
- Make sure to keep castor oil away from children. Castor oil is not a plaything. Children may consume or overdose themselves with the oil which can be harmful.
- Always perform a patch test on your skin before applying the castor oil on the affected area. If your skin is allergic to castor oil, using it may irritate the skin thus increasing troubles.
- Always seek the opinion of a trusted health care expert before using castor oil for eczema. Consulting a health care expert helps in recognizing the exact condition of eczema that has affected the individual. The health care professional can then recommend a required dosage of castor oil for the disorder.
- Apply the castor oil very gently using a soft material. Rubbing it on the affected areas of the skin may irritate the skin.
- Mix the castor oil in the recommended ratios for proper dilution. A change in the amount of dilution can cause the castor oil to react differently.
- Never use castor oil in an excess amount as its bad after effects are not known.
- Never consume castor oil unless prescribed by the health care expert.
- Pregnant women and lactating mothers must consult a health care professional before using castor oils. Castor oil is known to induce labor in pregnant women. So, using castor oil during pregnancy can affect the mother and the unborn child too.
- Coconut oil: It has a high content of fats and oils which helps in filling pores of the skin thus preventing skin from drying. Coconut oil cures itching and irritation in the skin.
- Jojoba oil: It is a liquid wax that contains fatty acids and fatty alcohols which penetrate deep into the skin and moisturize the dry skin.
- Honey: Honey is a great moisturizer, helps remove dryness and cure symptoms of eczema
[Read: Coconut Oil for Eczema]
Eczema is a problem that affects your physical appearance and resultantly have an impact on your social well-being. The chemical compositions of medicines can provide short-term relief, but they come with some side-effects. A natural remedy at your disposal is castor oil for eczema. When used correctly, this wonder oil can cure the infection and improve the health of your skin.