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How can I stay moisturized if I have eczema?

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Dry skin is itchy. When you have eczema, your skin doesn’t hold in moisture very well on its own, but some simple steps will help keep it hydrated:

  • Bathe right. Make the water in your shower or bath warm, not hot. Use a mild soap or cleanser with a low pH. Your skin will soak in moisture best if you stay in the tub for 10-15 minutes. Try adding half a cup of bleach to a full bath -- it kills bacteria that could be making your eczema worse. A packet of colloidal oatmeal in the water may feel soothing, too.
  • Seal in moisture. Moisturize as soon as you get out of the tub or shower, while your skin is still wet. Ointments and thick creams work better than lotions to lock in water. Rub it all over several times a day, and reapply to your hands every time you wash them.
  • Ask your doctor about wet wraps. She may recommend these if your itch is really bad. After you moisturize, cover the itchy skin with wet gauze or fabric, then wrap it with a dry cloth. You can leave it on for several hours.
  • Humidify. A household humidifier can help in dry climates and in winter when your heat is on.

SOURCES:

National Eczema Association.

Moses, S. September 2003. American Family Physician,

Hong, J. , June 2011. Seminars in cutaneous medicine and surgery

Walling, H. 2010. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology,

Eichenfield, L. , July 2014. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology

Sidbury, R. , August 2014. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on March 02, 2016

SOURCES:

National Eczema Association.

Moses, S. September 2003. American Family Physician,

Hong, J. , June 2011. Seminars in cutaneous medicine and surgery

Walling, H. 2010. Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology,

Eichenfield, L. , July 2014. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology

Sidbury, R. , August 2014. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on March 02, 2016

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What triggers itching in people with eczema?

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