Are you looking for a natural way to treat your eczema? In this video, I share my best natural remedy for eczema. Do you have natural remedies that help your eczema? If so, please share them with us in the comment section below or on my YouTube channel page.
Eczema is a common skin disorder in children. It’s caused by an over-active immune system and damaged skin. The damaged skin allows for bacteria and other irritants to enter the skin. This leads to more inflammation and worsening of the eczema. Scratching only damages the skin making it easier for bacteria to penetrate. Here’s a short video that explains what causes eczema.
Hard water is tap water that’s high in minerals such as calcium and magnesium. Hard water isn’t harmful, except the minerals prevent your soap from sudsing. Some people think that hard water is more likely to cause a rash than soft water.
Take a recent patient of mine: he moved his family to San Diego from the East Coast (good move this winter, no). After they moved here, they noticed their skin became dry and itchy. He blamed San Diego’s notoriously hard water and installed a water softener in the main water line. It was costly, but did it improve their skin?
A recent study from the UK looked at this question: Does hard water worsen eczema? The answer was, no, it doesn’t. Water hardness did not seem to have any impact on eczema, the most common skin rash.
What’s more important than the hardness of the water is the type of soap you use. True soap tends to strip the skin of its natural oils, leaving it exposed and irritated. Non-soap cleansers, of which Dove is the prototype, leave more oils on your skin, keeping it hydrated and protected.
My patient and his family didn’t get any better after installing a water softener (although he said they could drink our tap water without gagging now). I advised him to change to a moisturizing soap and to apply moisturizer daily.
San Diego is drier than most of the country, and the low humidity can be a shock to skin accustomed to humid air. Many people who move here find they have to moisturize more often than they did back home. When they complain, I suggest they could alternatively move back to the East Coast this winter — no takers so far.
Photo: Angel Gonzalez, Flickr.
The forest is full of things that make you itchy: poison ivy, poison oak, mosquitoes, chiggers. But for the wise adventurer, the forest also provides a way to heal your itch. The remedy might be found in the beautiful white birch tree.
White birch trees are ubiquitous in cold climates. A photo of the white tree against white snow is iconic of New England winters. A bark extract called Betulin (a terpene like tea tree oil) has been shown in animal studies to be antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and to aid in wound healing. Research presented at the annual congress of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venerology showed that a cream containing betulin significantly reduced itching in red, irritated skin in psoriasis and eczema patients.
The study is only preliminary, and betulin will need to be tested in rigorous trials to see if the extract makes a cream much better than placebo cream; however, betulin is already available in creams in Europe.
So how do you get the extract out of the bark if you’re itchy while hiking in a forest? I’ll wait for Bear Grylls to show us on a future episode of Man Vs. Wild. No doubt a fire and half a plastic bottle will be needed.
Photo: Nicolas T