09 Jul Summer is Eczema Flareup Season
If you suffer from eczema, everyone else might be stripping down to shorts and tank tops for summer as you worry about eczema flare-ups and people asking you, “What is that?” Winter months are often the most challenging for eczema patients thanks to dry air and cold temperatures, but at least the flare-ups can be hidden under long sleeves. However, summer months have high humidity and sunshine that create the perfect environment for flare-ups.
Eczema Flare-ups In Summer and Winter
It is not uncommon to itch more in the summer than winter for eczema sufferers. Remember that sweat is an eczema trigger, and you simply sweat more in summer months. It is how we control our body temperature. Sweat is mostly water, but also contains sodium, calcium, copper, lactic acid, potassium, nickel, chromium, urea, and iron. This can irritate the skin, causing an eczema flare-up.
An excess of water, whether from sweat or swimming, can also irritate eczema. Add in hot temperatures, which cause the blood vessels to dilate, and itching increases as inflammatory cells gather at a faster clip. Eczema patients may want to put cold packs on their eczema breakouts in order to discourage a larger flare-up and provide relief.
Summer months are prime for blocked sweat glands, too. With two sweat glands in the body, eccrine and apocrine, there are plenty of opportunities for blockage. In severe cases, a rash called miliaria may occur on the back and may lead to itching and triggering eczema.
Summer Activities and Eczema
For many eczema patients, there are activities that only take place in the summer months which provide perfect opportunities for eczema to flare-up. This includes swimming in chlorine-rich pools. Chlorine dries the skin, and the chemicals in pools are irritating. Wearing sunscreen more diligently is always a good idea, but popular ingredients like oxybenzone can cause a photoallergic reaction. Eczema patients should only use certain sunscreens recommended by their dermatologist.
Contact Spectrum Dermatology For Eczema Treatment
If you suffer from eczema, do your best to keep cool this summer in temperatures around 65 degrees. Avoid being outdoors between 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. and be certain to drink at least 60 ounces of water per day. Wipe away sweat immediately, and make sure you have a sunscreen that uses zinc oxide as the base. Contact Spectrum Dermatology today for more tips, or for help treating your eczema flare-up.