5 Home Remedies and 5 Lifestyle Changes for Your Eczema

Eczema, also referred to as atopic dermatitis, is a condition where skin becomes inflamed, red and itchy. Although it’s a common ailment in children, it can affect any age group. Eczema is a chronic condition which flares up periodically and then subsides. Eczema can occur along with asthma or hay fever. So far there is no cure for eczema, but by following certain treatment options and self-care measures, symptoms can be controlled and further breakouts can be prevented.

Home Remedies for Eczema

You can try using the below mentioned remedies for relieving eczema. Consult your physician if your eczema symptoms disrupt your daily routine activities or your sleep.

1. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has been reported to exhibit antifungal, antibacterial and antioxidant properties. It also contains vitamins such as lauric acid, vitamin K and vitamin E which confer the soothing property to coconut oil when applied on itchy skin.

  • For optimal benefits, it's best to use cold pressed, unrefined, virgin coconut oil. You should apply coconut oil on the skin several times in a day, for instant relief from itching and pain from eczema. You can continue the treatment for many days until the symptoms completely disappear.
  • You can also consume coconut oil by adding it to food and drinks. Oral consumption of coconut oil has been found to provide symptom relief apart from improving the immunity.

2. Turmeric

The use of turmeric for many skin disorders including eczema is well documented. A research study published in June 2010 reported that turmeric is effective in skin care therapies because of its antioxidant properties. Moreover, curcumin, the active constituent of turmeric, has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, making it effective in treating itching and inflammation associated with eczema.

There are two methods for using turmeric as a home remedy.

  • Take 3/2 tsp. of turmeric and mix it with sufficient milk to make a paste for topical application on the affected area of the skin. You should use this paste twice daily until all the symptoms disappear.  
  • Take 3/2 tsp. of turmeric and mix it with a cup of boiling water and let it boil on low heat for 10 minutes. After this preparation cools down, you can consume it orally or you can use it to wash the affected skin.

3. Aloe Vera

Aloe vera has anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and moisturizing properties which make it one of the effective home remedies for eczema. The procedure for using aloe vera as a home remedy is as follows:

  • Remove the gel of a fresh aloe vera leaf and mix it with a few drops of vitamin E oil.
  • Apply it directly on the affected area of the skin.
  • After the application becomes dry, rinse it with lukewarm water.
  • You should use this treatment twice daily until all your symptoms disappear.

4. Epsom Salt

Epsom salt is an effective treatment for serious skin disorders such as eczema. Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate that has anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it effective for reducing inflammation and treating the itching associated with eczema. Eczema patients with high blood pressure, diabetes and heart problems should avoid this treatment.

Epsom salt bath can be prepared as follows:

  • Add one or two cups of Epsom salt to a tub filled with lukewarm water and add 10-15 drops of lavender oil to it.
  • Soak the affected area of your skin in the bath for 10-15 minutes.
  • Dry your skin with a towel and apply a moisturizer.
  • You can repeat the procedure twice or thrice per week.

5. Chamomile

Chamomile is one of the popular home remedies for eczema. It contains flavonoids which possess anti-inflammatory properties and help reduce the itching, swelling, inflammation and redness. It can be used as a home remedy as follows:

  • Allow 1 tbsp. of chamomile flowers (dried) to steep in boiling water for 15 minutes. Strain the solution and let it cool for some time. Soak a piece of clean cloth in the solution and apply it to the affected area of the skin. Rinse after 10-15 minutes. You can repeat this treatment thrice a day till your symptoms subside.
  • Another method is to mix a couple of drops of chamomile essential oil to 1 tsp. of olive oil. Apply this oil preparation to the affected skin and gently massage for 5-10 minutes. You can repeat this procedure twice daily.

Lifestyle Change Tips for Eczema

1. Wear Comfortable Clothing

  • You should wear loose fitting clothes and avoid clothes made of materials such as wool, which can irritate the skin.
  • You should choose clothes with smooth texture that are made from cotton, silk and bamboo which are less irritating to the skin.
  • You should choose washing detergents with care as detergents tend to leave residues on the skin which can lead to eczema flare-ups.
  • While you are exercising, wear clothes meant to prevent excessive sweating.

2. Invest on a Humidifier

Eczema can be aggravated by the presence of dry air in the room as dry air dehydrates the skin and makes it flaky. You can prevent this by installing a humidifier in your room, which will increase the moisture content of your room.

3. Keep Your House Allergen Free and Clean

Allergic agents such as mites, pet dander, pollen, molds and dandruff trigger and aggravate eczema. You should clean the house often with a vacuum cleaner which will help remove allergens present in the environment.

You should also take precautions to avoid contracting bacterial, fungal and viral infections from the environment, as they can also contribute to eczema.

4. Avoid Stress

Stress, both physical and psychological, has been reported to be a contributing factor for skin conditions such as eczema. Apart from using home remedies for eczema, it's important to take steps to beat the stress in your daily life. Hypnotheraphy, meditation, yoga and visualization techniques are effective to ward off stress. Pursuing hobbies such as listening to good music, painting, etc. can also relieve stress.

5. Take Natural Supplements

Intake of natural supplements have been found to decrease symptoms due to eczema. Some of the natural supplements that you can include in your diet are fatty acids, vitamins A, D and E, zinc and gamma linolenic acid.

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