I have eczema. If you do too and you are in the U.S., this post is for you.
Eczema is a skin condition (usually chronic, doctors even call it a “skin disease”), which sometimes called atopic dermatitis, which is the most common form. In reality, there are a lot of types of eczema and triggers. Usually, it shows itself through red dry, scaly skin and itchiness, that might be intense. If it gets infected or flares up you might experience skin rush, little bubbles with clear liquid or puss. Sounds disgusting, I know, well I had also swollen eyes and skin peeling to blood from my eyelids, lips, and nipples.
It can be very frustrating to look for medical assistance in the U.S. First of all, eczema is considered to be a pre-existing condition, even if it did not flare-up in the past decade, which means our insurance is unlikely to cover your visit to a dermatologist (mine cost me $575 in San Francisco). Secondly, I do not support the wide usage of steroids and antibiotics in the U.S. This is the only quick help that might cause more harm than help. I am serious. Please, think twice when your American doctor prescribes a tub of steroids and tells you to use it till symptoms are gone. Steroids are not supposed to be used for more than two weeks! And should be prescribed only in extreme cases when eczema does not let you sleep, work and function. Antibiotics suppress your immune system which often only worsens the condition.
I am not a doctor but please please please think twice before using local medications for extended periods of times. There is plenty of criticism even from American medical societies towards the existing protocols of treating eczema but in 99% of visits, you will be left without any blood tests taken but with a huge tub of steroids.
So how do you survive the fellowship?
Diet. Extremely often skin conditions are caused or worsened by Candida overgrowth (fungus) that is normal to have in your gut but if it overgrowths you can experience eczema, acne, yeast infections, etc. The fungus grows by feeding of sugar. And byproducts of fungus life (yes, its poops) intoxicates your organism. The influence of gut health is a very hot topic in medical societies that for some reason is still ignored by the protocols at American clinics. Go ahead and say “no” to sugar, coffee, black teas, gluten (which means no bread or pastries), sweet types of vegetables (usually anything red and yellow), fruits. Be careful with nuts, sauces, red meat, and seafood. Make sure you are not constipated, it is very important. You should have your morning routine! 😉 I know it sounds like you can’t eat anything but if on the majority of the days you can manage it, it will reward you! You can always ask me about what my meals look like.
Sleep and no stress. Easier said than done for sure. I know but you have to sacrifice some things and learn how to manage time and your workload. Anxiety and stress are common triggers that cause eczema to flare up, which then creates more anxiety and stress, which then leads to more eczema flare-ups. When you are stressed and exhausted your body produces more adrenaline and cortisol. But when the body produces too much cortisol, it can suppress the immune system and cause an inflammatory response in the skin. People living with skin diseases like eczema are particularly susceptible to this inflammatory response. So please go sleep! Meditate, talk to your friends, relax, walk, distract yourself with something pleasant from our anxieties, talk to your manager if you are too stressed in the office, do something! Your health should priority #1!
Supplements. I am not going to write a full list of what I used because I am not a doctor. But I have done extended research on Candida treatment and it helped me a lot! So feel free to get in touch with me and learn the full treatment I prescribed to myself. 😀 The only thing I will still recommend here is to just get yourself a basic anti-Candida complex. An example is “Candida Support” by Now Foods and “Candex” by Pure that you can order at iHerb. Additionally, I will recommend shea butter, coconut oil, and emu oil as a topical treatment. Of course, if you are itching badly, you can buy Hydrocortisone cream 1% at CVS or Wallgreens (it is low steroid cream, use with caution). Or you can buy any non-steroid eczema ointment. I really like “Natralia” from iHerb. Avoid anything with glycerin, I could write another article on why glycerin is a terrible idea for your skin.
Clean your room. I am serious, but you might be allergic to dust. Just declutter your place. Make sure you wash your bed sheets regularly and let fresh air into your room as often as you can. Also, vacuum carpets, we know Americans love carpeting floors, have you seen how much dust it collects?!
Experiment. Everyone has their own triggers. Experiment by adding or removing some foods, change soap or washing detergent, maybe fabric of your clothes triggers eczema, don’t spend too much time sweaty, excessive heat or cold also might trigger eczema, so listen to your body, take care of yourself and understand what is the best for you.
That was a long post that hopefully, no one needs 😀