Dear Savvy Derm Diva,
Do you have any tips that I can use to prevent an eczema flare?
Constantly Flaring, Regine S.
Dear Constantly Flaring,
This question is perfect because October is Eczema Awareness Month. Over 30 million people are suffering from eczema in the United States alone. Though this a chronic condition that waxes and wanes, you can use these simple tips to prevent severe flares. First of all, always make sure you see your Board Certified Dermatologist to rule out anything else that may be going on. The best prevention tips I can provide are: Moisturizing your skin at least once a day, especially immediately after you bathe. With the cooler weather, you may want to invest in a humidifier so that the air is not so dry as this can pull more moisture out of the skin. Monitor and avoid triggers such as scratchy clothing, harsh soaps, and even some foods. Last, of all, make sure you are managing your stress as this can exacerbate your symptoms.
Diva Tip: To learn more about eczema, make sure you visit the National Eczema Association.????
Dear Savvy Derm Diva,
My hands become drier with the cooler weather; they eventually crack and become painful. How do I know if I have eczema or something else?
Needing a Hand, Marisa A
Dear Needing a Hand,
First of all, your problem is not uncommon during the start of the cooler weather. As the temperature cools, the air becomes drier, which can wreak havoc on our skin. Hands are a particular concern because of increased use and washing. Adding a hand-sanitizer to the mix can only make things worse. Typically, eczema is known to be itchier than something like an irritant contact derm secondary to constant exposure to the elements I mentioned. Nonetheless, eczema falls under a big umbrella of many diagnoses that can overlap. If you feel you cannot control your symptoms, you should make an appointment to be seen. You can see me virtually or in the office.
Diva Tip: Always keep a moisturizer around and use after each hand wash and/or sanitizer use. A fave is Eucerin Advanced Repair cream. Find more hand moisturizer faves at my Amazon Store.*????
Renata Block, MMS, PA-C, is the creator of Savvy Derm Diva, an online resource for proper skin care. Ask Savvy Derm Diva is a monthly column answering your skincare related concerns! Make sure you follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter! You can make an appointment with her via TeleMedicine or in person at Advanced Dermatology & Aesthetic Medicine, LLC, or TEXT to 847-802-9667.