01 February 2016

Eczema Update 002

eczema-february-2016-rottenotter-rotten-otter-blog
So after a week of carrying around the hand counter and keeping count of every time I scratched, I sort of gave up with the whole eczema book. The next chapter moves onto booking an appointment with your doctor and moisturising a couple of times a day. Although I didn’t make an appointment to see my GP and going over the creams I use etc, this wasn’t the problem. It’s the moisturising part. I hate applying any type of lotion.  I don’t like the feeling if it doesn’t sink in properly and I always find myself scratching my eczema after I’ve applied moisturiser. I’ve said it before, I think my eczema isn’t “normal” in that it doesn’t respond well to being moisturised and that my eczema disappears quicker if I leave it to sort of dry out. Maybe I just haven’t found the right moisturiser for me but I sort of gave up with the book because of this. Who knows, I might pick it up again at some point but for now it’s just not working. 

As for where I currently have eczema, it’s an improvement from last month. At the moment I am pretty much free of eczema on my body. I have two small patches on my hands that I am hoping will disappear after an application or two of steroid cream. There was also a couple of days were I had a flare up on the bottom of my feet but that cleared up on its own. I only ever get flare ups on my feet in the summer when it’s hot so it was unusual to see it happen in the winter.

The major problems I’ve had over the past couple of weeks are with my face and scalp. Maybe three or four times this past month I’ve woken up and had an allergic reaction on my face. The only way I can describe the feeling is if you imagine a million ants crawling over your face. My face goes splotchy and red, flaky and irritated. After a bit of Google-ing it sounds like a food allergy but it happens as soon as I wake up before I’ve had anything to eat or drink. The only thing that calms it is time and distracting myself from it which I find very hard to do. The easiest thing I’ve found is simply having a lukewarm bath and keeping my hands in the water so I can’t touch my face.

My scalp has also been driving me crazy this month. No matter what I do to it, it seems to be getting itchy and greasy a lot quicker than it normally does. I try to wash my hair on a Sunday and then leave it until Friday before washing again simply because it takes so long to dry and washing my hair too often irritates my scalp. It’s a catch 22 when it comes to my scalp. I want to wash it as keeping it clean helps my eczema but washing irritates it. I’m still using Neutrogena T-Gel Shampoo which is helping to keep my scalp flake free but it hasn’t completely cured the eczema. I’m still applying a weekly scalp treatment which is what helps my scalp the most I think. I had a really good week with my scalp mid-month and now I am trying to work out why. I used a different shampoo, one from Liz Earle, so I have bought the full size bottle to see if that makes a difference. If it doesn’t then I have no idea and the good week must have been a fluke.

What I am going to work on this month is making sure I write down everything I eat and do in my eczema diary as I've been slacking with it. I'll fill in a few days and then slack of the weekend and get out of the routine of writing it all down. I thnik the hard thing is making time before bed to write everything down. If it didn't mean lugging more things to work in my bag then I'd keep it in my bag and fill it in as a I go about my day.

If you suffer from eczema, how are you getting on?


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15 comments

  1. I know you're a lover of Lush products, but are you 100% sure they aren't triggering anything? I know my eczema gets angrier the more 'natural' extracts and oils I slather it in. I've realised recently that my steroid cream actually makes my skin itchier and causes my eczema to flare up more, why is skin so confusing?

    I've got a recommendation for a really nice, gentle face moisturiser - La Roche Posay Toleraine Rich is scent free, packed full of shea butter and feels so soothing on the skin. Also, have you tried The Body Shop's Shea Butter Body Whip or Body Butter? They are honestly the only moisturisers I can use if I'm having an itchy, eczema-flare up, and they don't seem to further irritate it.

    Sorry for the essay ramble haha! Hope you find something that works soon, Katy xx

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    1. ahh don't worry Jenny, I always like the hear (read) what you think! When my eczema was particularly bad a couple of years ago I went on a complete ban with Lush as my mum thought that might be causing it and it really made no difference. I limit to using Lush at the weekends as my treat and my skin doesn't react to them. If I react to a product then it's immediate the majority of the time. I tried a new shampoo a while ago and I had to wash my hair a couple of times straight away as it was irritating my scalp that much. That's why I'm thinking it's got to be something else or my flare ups are simply down to nothing and nothing can help to stop them!

      I love the body butters for my feet but I just find them way too heavy for my skin and I end up scratching them off. I feel like the only person but I find my skin actually reacts better when it's on the drier side. I haven't tried the whipped body lotion though, will have to look at it next time I'm in town.

      I used to use a lot of La Roche-Posay! xx

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    2. That's fab that your beloved Lush products don't upset your skin :D Oh I've had that shampoo experience before, it's horrid! I really hope you find out what's triggering you, sounds so frustrating! I went through a stage where dairy really sent my skin flaring up but sometimes I get flare ups that have no cause that I can identify. Ooh I'm also pretty sure my eczema is flaring up less now I'm taking 3 or 4 Omega 3 Fish Oil tablets a day, apparently it's good for eczema?

      Really liking the eczema diary series and really crossing my fingers that something works for you!

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    3. I've heard fish oil helps as well but I'm vegetarian! Will have to look into other supplements and see if anything could help. I took vitamin D for a while but didn't notice any changes and then I just got out of the habit of taking them. I'm seeing a pattern here, if I don't see immediate changes then I give up! haha xx

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  2. Hi! I suffer quite badly with eczema too and as a ballet dancer it can be really annoying as obviously it's hard to get out on stage in costume if my skin is bad. I find putting sea salt in the bath helps calm it. I'm currently on the steriods too to calm it as well as taking antihistamine for a week. I have it on my scalp too but recently found washing it more frequently (every 2 days) with a natural shampoo has been helping. I hope it gets better for you soon! It's so annoying that there is no permanent cure...

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    1. Which shampoo do you use? I'm still hoping it'll just go as I get older but seeing as I'm 25 and no sign of yet I'm not too hopeful! xx

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    2. Avalon Organics Scalp Normalising Shampoo, and I recently found Bioderma Atoderm Intensive quite a good non irritating moisturiser as everything else seemed to sting it right now xx

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    3. I'll put the Avalon shampoo on my to try list, thank you!

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  3. I used to have real issues with eczema, thankfully I grew out of it. You must be a real trouper to still be dealing with it on a daily basis. Hopefully everything gets better for you.

    Angie | Chocolate & Lipstick | Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle Blog

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    1. Thank you Angie! I'm still hoping I'll grow out of it :) xx

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  4. my other half suffers terribly and right now the only shampoo bodywash he can use ishttp://www.superdrug.com/Childs-Farm/Childs-Farm-Hair-&-Body-Wash-in-Organic-Sweet-Orange-250ml/p/452105?gclid=CMDU4a6M2coCFcG6GwodcxkNDg&gclsrc=aw.ds they have just the shampoo too in boots. I have been using sulphur soap for my skin recently ( spotty!) which he is now using on his body and has seen some big improvements xx

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    1. oooh I'll have to try that shampoo, thank you! I'll have a google of sulphur soap as well :) xx

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  5. I've had an awful flare up all over my legs and scalp this past month (mine always seem to be stress and/or cold weather related) and have been slathering Weleda Skin Food and Herbfarmacy Skin Rescue Balm over everything. I would highly recommend both of those to you BUT Skin Food is crazy super thick and takes forever to sink in so not sure if you'd get on with it? x

    Evelyn @ We Were Raised By Wolves

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    1. I know stress is a big trigger for me and is what made my eczema flare up again badly when I was 18. At the moment though I don't actually feel stressed so when I do get bad flare ups I'm always not sure what caused them. It's like there is no reason why my eczema should be flaring up but it is haha it drives me crazy!

      I actually love skin food and use it a lot on my hands and elbows. I'll check out the balm from Herbfarmacy, thanks! :) xx

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  6. I had this whole comment, hit "preview", then it disappeared. Argh! I don't have enough energy to recreate it. I just wanted you to know you're not the only one who has issues with moisturizers and I barely trust anything not to react with my eczema. I might go through your archives to find some ways to treat mine, because it is frustrating this winter and it hurts.

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