If you suffer from eczema, you are not alone. Over 1 million Australians, including 1 in 3 babies, have eczema. Unfortunately there is no known cause, however we do know that genetics play a role, as well as some common triggers that happen inside the body.
It has been said that people who suffer from eczema have an overactive immune system. When triggered by certain substances, either inside or outside the body, it reacts, causing inflammation on the skin. This inflammation is characterised by red, itchy and painful rashes that can occur at any place on the body.
Some research studies have shown that a specific gene called Filaggrin could be linked to this complex disorder. Filaggrin plays a key role in the epidermal barrier function and is often associated with atopic dermatitis. It’s said that people who suffer from eczema are deficient in this gene, making them more vulnerable to outside and inside bodily triggers.
While there is no known cause of eczema, there are a range of common triggers that can impact the severity of your eczema. These include:
Unfortunately there are many materials in the air that are known to cause allergic reactions. These include dust, seasonal pollen, mould and pet dander. These factors are difficult to control, but it is possible to undertake allergy testing to better understand which allergens are affecting you. Once you know which allergens are triggering a flare up, where possible it’s best to try and avoid them.
One major factor that contributes to inflammation and flare-ups is your diet. The immune system and gut is often weakened for eczema sufferers, making them more vulnerable to sickness and other health problems. The great news is, diet is something you can control. Eating the right nutrient-rich foods can help to improve the immune system and reduce flare-ups. We also recommend taking essential fatty acids to supplement lost omega 3, 6 and 9 while building a strong gut. You can read our blog on what foods make eczema worse here.
A trigger that is often overlooked is the detergent you use to wash your clothes. Many clothes detergents contain harsh chemicals that can cause a reaction on your skin. We suggest looking for products that claim they are hypoallergenic and free from added dyes and fragrances. There are also some options that are formulated for sensitive skin, which you may find better for your skin.
Skin care products
As with detergents, what we wash and put on our body is super important. Using body washes and lotions that are chemical-based can further dry the skin and cause a flare-up of your eczema. Always read the ingredients label, as there are often hidden chemicals and harmful fragrances that can potentially irritate sensitive skin and eczema. We suggest using natural products such as our Natural Body Wash, which has been specially formulated for people with eczema-prone skin.
Have you noticed your eczema flare’s up at certain times of the year? The most common time of the year when eczema sufferers find their skin worsens is during the cooler months. A combination of dry air and additional layers of clothing can irritate the skin and cause inflammation. While we can’t control the weather, employing the right strategies can help protect your skin. For example, keeping on top of daily moisturising, applying a body oil regularly, staying away from heaters and keeping hydrated can help avoid a flare.
Remember that everyone is different, so you may find your triggers include all, some or none of the above listed. We need to carefully examine what we do in our everyday lives and take note of how certain things trigger inflammation in and outside of the body.
When it comes to choosing the right products to use to treat your eczema, we always recommend a natural solution. Our Natural C+ Eczema Cream used in conjunction with our Body & Bath oil is a powerful combination. These two products work together to create a protective barrier on the skin while also hydrating and nourishing the skin. This helps to fight against redness, inflammation and bacteria. To give your immune system a boost, we suggest our Mega Oil to help improve your gut health. Our Mega Oil has been formulated with omegas 3, 6 and 9, as well as essential fatty acids, aimed to improve your gut health.