A recent research says that 1 out of every 10 people suffers with Eczema, at least once in their life. Eczema is an itchy skin condition. People have a misconception that this is a pediatric condition but a study says that even seniors are vulnerable to it.
The risk of Eczema is so rampant that 1 out of every 5 toddlers falls prey to it but this risk dwindles gradually with adulthood and middle age. This risk again increases when people reach their 70’s. Observations reveal that 1 out of every 10 seniors averaged to have been affected by Eczema.
Nearly 32% of Americans are affected by different stages of Eczema(1).
There is no permanent cure for Eczema. But there are various ways to treat the symptoms to prevent further damage and heal the skin.
Medicines, Moisturizers, Natural treatments, being food conscious and lifestyle changes are all parts of effective treatment of this condition(2).
Home Remedies for Eczema
Eczema – Treatment
Treating Eczema requires a little patience and a close watch.
The 4 phases of Eczema treatment are
- Itch control
- Skin healing
- Flare prevention
- Preventing infections
Remedies for treating Eczema include the below options.
CURE 1: Other Home Remedies for Eczema Cure
Eczema can toll not only your physical health but also mental health. Though Eczema poses a painful physical condition, it also causes a lot of social embarrassment. There are a lot of home remedies that help you treat Eczema effectively. Read on to know what are they.
[Also Read: Dyshidrotic Eczema Home Remedies]
1. Aloe Vera Gel for Eczema:
The antimicrobial, antibacterial, wound healing and immune system boosting properties of Aloe Vera prevent the skin from infections and offer a soothing effect during skin irritation and itching. It is good to use fresh Aloe Vera Gel extracted directly from the plant. But before using, check for skin sensitivity as Aloe Vera can sometimes cause stinging or burning sensations.
- Aloe Vera Gel
- A clean cup
- Clean water
How to Use
- Take half a cup of Aloe Vera gel.
- Smear this on the eczema-affected regions..
- Leave it to dry for about 20 minutes.
- Wash it off with clean water.
- Use this remedy thrice a day.
[Also Read: Benefits of Aloe Vera]
2. Apple Cider Vinegar for Eczema:
Eczema reduces the acidic properties of the skin. As Apple Cider Vinegar is acidic, it can be used to soothe the symptoms of Eczema by balancing the skin acidity. Do not use concentrated Apple Cider Vinegar as this can increase the skin irritation.
Apple Cider Vinegar Bath
- Lukewarm water in your bathtub
- 2 Cups Apple Cider Vinegar
- Fill your bathtub with lukewarm water
- Add 2 cups of Apple Cider Vinegar to it
- Soak your body for around 15 minutes in the solution
- Wash the body with cold and clean water
3. Honey for Eczema Treatment
Honey has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties which help in wound healing. It also strengthens the immune system. It prevents infection and also moisturizes the skin.
- 1 Cup Honey
- 1 Tablespoon of Cinnamon Powder
- Take equal quantities of Honey and Cinnamon powder
- Add both and mix well
- Apply this blend directly on the affected area
CURE 2: Natural Remedies for Eczema
All of us know that Eczema is a situation where your skin goes through a lot of damage like going dry and red. It loses its moisture. Excessive itching leads to lot of bleeding and infection. There is a lot of mental stress as to how to get out of this situation. There are a lot of natural remedies to deal with this dreaded situation.
1. Colloidal Oatmeal:
Made from finely ground oats, it helps in softening and calming inflamed skin caused by Eczema. Add this to lukewarm water and soak the affected area in it for 15 minutes to get relief from itching and soften the skin(3).
Preparing an Oatmeal Bath for eczema
- Bathtub with enough lukewarm water
- Powdered Oatmeal
- Have enough lukewarm water in your bathtub. Make sure the tub is clean and the water is not hot because hot water might increase the inflammation and also dry the skin’s moisture.
- Take a cup of finely ground or powdered oatmeal and add it to lukewarm water and mix well.
- Mix the solution thoroughly with your hand till the water is milky and the solution turns smooth in texture..
- After you finish, your skin might feel sticky. Wait for 5 to 10 minutes and then you can wash with fresh lukewarm water to remove the stickiness.
- After about 3 minutes, apply a moisturizer to keep the moisture intact.
NOTE: Usually, people soak themselves around 10 to 12 minutes for relief from itching but it is always advised that you consult your doctor before using this remedy. Soaking yourself too long would dry the skin and increase the itching.
2. Coconut Oil for Eczema:
Coconut oil has Lauric acid which has an antibacterial property that kills the staph bacteria and prevents infection. Choose Virgin or Cold pressed variants when treating Eczema. The healthy fats of coconut oil help cure dry skin.
How to Use
- Solid or liquid coconut oil can be used on the skin. It can be rubbed between the fingertips.
- Applying coconut oil twice a day can cure symptoms of Eczema. You can use it more often if necessary. It can be used like any other moisturizer or lotion.
- Consistent use of Coconut oil can prevent symptoms of Eczema from returning or getting worse.
- Apply coconut oil before bed, if the skin feels dry during mornings.
- Use coconut oil instead of a conditioner to treat Eczema on the scalp. After application, gently massage the scalp. Leave it for few minutes and then wash it off with warm water.
Best time to use:
Just after a shower or a bath. You can also add a little coconut oil to your bath.
NOTE: Before using Coconut oil, ask your doctor. People who are allergic to coconuts, please refrain from using coconut oil as this can lead to further worsening the situation. Seek the advice of a pediatrician before using coconut oil for infants and toddlers.
3. Sunflower oil for Eczema:
It acts as a barrier to the skin and protects it against bacterial skin infections. It is advisable to use this oil for infants as it is quite helpful and also does not harm the sensitive skin of babies.
How to Use
- You can apply the oil directly to the affected areas of the body.
- You can also add a few drops of the oil in your diet and consume it along with your cooking oil.
- Since the oil is not heavy, it will not harm your body
- For babies, it is better to dilute the oil in baby oil or lotion so that it does not hurt the skin of the babies in any way
- You can apply the oil on all parts of your body except eyelids
CURE 3: Dietary Changes
Inflammation of the skin or the body can be brought down by the inclusion of certain foods in the diet. These foods are called anti-inflammatory foods which are listed below
Fish varieties high in Omega 3 Fatty Acids like salmon, mackerel, albacore tuna, herring and sardines should be considered.
Potatoes (Potassium and Fiber for reducing irritation) and Green Onions (Vitamin K for healthy skin)
Bananas are high in Potassium, and this makes it the best fruit for treating Eczema.
4. Lentils and Beans:
They are highly alkaline foods that reduce inflammation.
[Also Read: Healthy Diet to Heal Eczema Naturally]
5. Chicken or Beef Broth:
Amino acid glycine present in meat helps in repairing skin.
Note: Foods to avoid include Citrus fruits, Gluten or Wheat, Soy, Eggs, Cinnamon, Vanilla, Cloves and Tomatoes
CURE 4: Alternative Treatments for Eczema
1. Homeopathy for Treating Eczema
Homeopathic way of treatment is typically a way of treating a situation from the root level. There are scores of people who believe in this approach of treatment which they claim have shown considerable results. Below are some variants of Eczema.
Sulphur is considered as one of the most effective remedies for Eczema. It offers instant relief from excessive itching and burning sensation. It shows a positive effect in cases of worsened Eczema, usually caused by the unsystematic usage of ointments.
Graphite is very effective in treating Weeping Eczema. Weeping Eczema generally forms between toes and fingers, scalp and behind the ears. It provides substantial relief from eczematous eruptions that expel sticky fluid and also treats eczema that forms on the eyelids.
Dry Eczema in the elbows, joints and knees:
Sepia officinalis is the apt homeopathic remedy for eczema that occurs in bends of elbows and the knees. It relieves the situation of severe itching that arises due to dry skin.
Urinary and Gastric trouble:
Lycopodium clavatum proves very effective for patients suffering from certain sort of urinary or gastric trouble. It provides effective relief from bleeding followed by severe itching caused by eczematous eruptions. It also treats and relieves hardened skin and deep fissures.
NOTE: Speak to your homeopathic doctor on the quantity of dosage you should take because the dosage varies from person to person.
Stress is one of the most common triggers for Eczema. There are different ways of dealing and bringing down stress which include
- Music Therapy
- Deep Breathing
- Yoga Asanas
- Tai Chi
CURE 5: Essential Oils for Eczema Treatment
There is a lot of pain and discomfort associated with Eczema. There are many prescription drugs but if you are looking for natural and effective ways to treat the symptoms, there are essential oils, alternative treatments, and home remedies. What essential oils are good for Eczema? If this is the next question running on your mind, read on the below list to find out how to use them too.
1. Tea Tree Oil for Eczema:
It disinfects the skin and prevents infection in the cracked skin. It also kills microbes and germs harboring on the infected areas and helps against recurrence of Eczema.
- 5 drops of Tea tree oil
- 1 tablespoon of Coconut oil
- 5 drops of Lavender oil
- A clean bowl
- Add all the above ingredients in the clean bowl.
- Mix them thoroughly till the solution is evenly consistent.
- Apply this on to the affected areas of the skin very gently.
Points to remember
- Always mix Tea Tree oil with a carrier oil because applying the concentrated form can worsen Eczema.
- Perfect carrier oils include coconut oil, jojoba oil, almond oil and olive oil.
- Add 12 drops of your chosen carrier oil for every drop of Tea Tree oil.
- Do not forget to do a patch test before the application of the mixture on the affected area. Apply a small amount of oil on the back of your hand and if there is no irritation within 24 hours of applying it, it is safe to use the mixture.
- After applying the mixture on the affected area, do not wash it off. Let the skin absorb the mixture.
Do not use Tea Tree oil orally as it can cause drowsiness, confusion, hallucinations, loss of motor control, diarrhea and rashes, if ingested orally.
2. Lavender Oil for Eczema
Because it is anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory, it has a soothing effect on the skin. It can be applied directly on to rashes, inflammation, dryness and itchy areas of the skin.
- A clean bowl
- Distilled water
- Lavender Essential Oil
- A clean, empty spray bottle
- Take a bowl of clean water
- Add 8 to 10 drops of Lavender essential oil.
- Transfer this mixture to an empty spray bottle.
- Shake well and use this to spray on the affected area of the skin.
- Shea Butter or Vitamin E lotion
- Lavender Essential Oil
- A clean bowl
- Transfer the Shea Butter of Vitamin E lotion to the bowl
- Add 12 to 15 drops of Lavender essential oil to it.
- Mix well and apply this lotion on the affected area of the skin very gently.
[Read: Essential Oils for Eczema]
3. Peppermint Essential Oil for Eczema:
The menthol content of the oil is used to bring down the pain caused by Eczema significantly because high menthol numbs down aches and pain.
How to Prepare Pepper Eczema Cream at Home?
- Soft pure Shea Butter
- Coconut oil
- 2 Vitamin E capsules
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- A clean container
- Take ¼ cup of soft pure Shea butter
- Add 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to it and whip to form a cream
- Press the extract of 2 Vitamin E capsules into the cream.
- Add 5 to 6 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil to it and whip again thoroughly.
- Apply this on the affected area generously after a shower and seal the skin moisture.
Precautions to Be Taken:
We all know that the skin succumbs to a lot of suffering and dryness during winter. Dealing with Eczema can be more challenging during winter. Remember to follow the below mentioned list of precautions to deal with Eczema more effectively during winter.
- Deep cracks, skin peeling and blisters on the hands can occur during winters. Protect your hands by wearing a pair of gloves when you go outdoors.
- To combat skin dryness during winters, use a humidifier inside your home as there is a high chance that the air inside the house loses humidity.
- As moisturizing the skin is very vital, remember that you apply a moisturizing cream to your skin with 3 minutes of coming out of the shower.
- Also remember to limit your bath time as longer baths tend to wash away the natural oils from the skin.
- During winters, try to avoid using soap, it’s good if you can choose a body bath lotion. If you are using a soap, try to use a very mild one.
- Wearing wet clothes results in excess evaporation which is bad for the skin in winters. It is good if you can change to dry clothing when your skin is still damp.
- Even though the temperature is low during winters, do not forget to use sunscreen to protect your skin from the UV rays of the sun.
- It is equally important that you take care of yourself from inside as well. Eat nutritious and healthy food, especially foods that contains Omega 3 Fatty acids like Salmon, Flax seeds, Fish Oil etc. These foods help in restoring oils to the skin and keep it hydrated.
- Consumption of Alcohol would worsen the situation. So, stay away from it.
- Natural remedies have been one of the best options for treating many ailments from centuries now. Nature has bestowed on us many ways of treatments. These remedies do not pose any side effects, unlike chemical drugs.
As far as possible be away from mental and physical stress. Proper food habits (Heavy breakfast, moderate lunch and a light dinner will help you maintain a proper health, In addition to this, choosing home remedies which are natural will also keep you away from falling prey to the side effects of chemical drugs. Staying healthy both from inside and outside will help prevent flares.
As said earlier, treating Eczema requires a little patience and a close watch.
Frequently asked questions
How common is eczema?
Eczema is a condition which can happen to both children and adults but very commonly occurs in children. Both males and females are affected equally. It can commonly be triggered for people who have a family history of allergies and asthma.
What are the complications associated with eczema?
Infection can become serious with rubbing and scratching the affected areas. Prolonged damage like this can cause permanent scars. Disturbed sleep is another result of itchy eczema. Many people stay away from social life as they are uncomfortably self-conscious in a gathering.