Eczema, a chronic skin condition that is characterized by red, itchy, and inflamed skin, can significantly impact your quality of life. While there’s no cure for eczema, managing and avoiding triggers can help alleviate symptoms.
An allergy and immunology specialist is an invaluable part of a multidisciplinary care team for eczema. At Riviera Allergy Medical Center, Dr. Ulrike Ziegner, MD, has extensive experience helping patients manage eczema, minimizing its impact on your quality of life.
As part of your comprehensive care plan, Dr. Ziegner can provide guidance on steps you can take at home to manage eczema triggers.
Identifying eczema triggers
Eczema triggers vary from person to person, and this makes it crucial to work closely with a specialist to identify your individual triggers. Certain foods, allergens, environmental factors, stress, and irritants like harsh soaps or fabrics may trigger your eczema symptoms.
Common eczema symptoms include:
- Metals (especially nickel)
- Household cleaning products
- Wool and polyester
- Dust mites
- Cold or hot temperatures
Additionally, changes in hormones, stress, and dry skin can trigger or worsen symptoms.
Establish an eczema skin care routine
Having eczema means your skin is sensitive and requires special care. The skin barrier of individuals with eczema doesn’t function as well as it should. The skin has trouble retaining moisture and keeping out irritants.
This means you need a gentle and consistent skin care routine to best manage your symptoms. Opt for fragrance-free and hypoallergenic skin care products to minimize irritation.
Regular moisturizing is crucial to keep the skin hydrated, reducing the likelihood of flare-ups. Choose emollients or ointments over lotions, as they provide a more effective barrier against moisture loss.
Make practical dietary changes
Certain foods can worsen eczema symptoms, and identifying and eliminating these triggers is key. Once you know your dietary triggers, you can watch what you eat and help control your symptoms. Collaborate with Dr. Ziegner to determine if any specific foods are contributing to your eczema.
Common culprits include dairy, eggs, nuts, seafood, sesame, and gluten. Adopting an elimination diet under professional guidance can help identify and manage dietary triggers.
Allergen-proof your home
Creating an allergen-limited environment at home is highly beneficial when you’re living with eczema. Allergen-proof mattress and pillow covers can go a long way toward reducing triggers like dust mites.
Regularly clean and vacuum your living space, and consider investing in an air purifier to reduce airborne allergens. If pets are present, ensure they’re bathed regularly to minimize pet dander.
Stress is a well-known trigger for eczema flare-ups. Incorporate stress-reducing activities into your daily routine, such as mindfulness meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga. In many cases, daily stressors are unavoidable. However, stress-busting activities can help balance the scales.
The fabrics you wear can impact your skin, especially if you have eczema. To control eczema symptoms, choose soft, breathable fabrics like cotton, and avoid wool or synthetic materials that may irritate the skin.
Wash your clothes with mild detergents, preferably those designed for sensitive skin. Dr. Ziegner can help you identify specific fabric or detergent sensitivities.
Schedule regular check-ins
Collaborating with an allergy and immunology specialist is crucial for effective eczema management.
Regular check-ins with Dr. Ziegner provide the opportunity for ongoing evaluation and adjustments to your management plan as needed. This partnership ensures a personalized approach to your eczema, optimizing long-term outcomes.
While eczema can be a challenging condition, taking proactive steps at home and working closely with a specialist can significantly improve symptoms.
Top-quality eczema care
If you’re struggling with frequent flares and having trouble managing triggers, Dr. Ziegner can help. To get started, give us a call now to request an appointment with Dr. Ziegner. With the right comprehensive plan, you gain some freedom from eczema and enjoy your life more.