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Coping with eczema pain

Eczema can bring with it cracks (also known as fissures) that are seriously uncomfortable, and even moving about normally can open skin cracks further leading to pain. And if the urge to scratch becomes too much, you can find yourself locked in a cycle of itching yourself raw, then getting back to itching as soon as the skin heals over.

There are some forms of eczema that also bring blisters, particularly dyshidrotic eczema which is most common in women, which usually creates sore skin on the palms of hands, between fingers or on the soles of feet.

The pain of eczema has been found to cause additional side effects, including poor sleep levels and low mood. For some people, the pain is as disabling as the itchiness.

Clearly, a painful flare-up is a sign to look closely for triggers and avoid whatever you think is behind it. Also, do an audit of your skin care routine and the products you are using to make sure you are doing everything possible to heal and sooth your skin.

If fissures or blistering are particularly bad, seek medical help, as broken skin is vulnerable to infection and that could make your situation even worse.

Cold compresses may also help ease the pain of an eczema flare-up. If you use anything that leaves moisture on the skin though, remember to pat dry and apply moisturiser straight afterwards.

Also, try lukewarm baths or showers using special preparations that can soothe the skin, leaving it softer and more hydrated, so the cracks don’t appear or open as easily. Make sure you don’t stay in the water too long, pat dry and within three minutes apply plenty of specialist cream or an emollient to trap moisture and restore your skin’s natural protective barrier.

Try really hard not to itch, and keep your nails short and clothing soft just in case you subconsciously find yourself scratching or rubbing.

Prevention is crucial, and keeping on top of a thorough skin care regime, using medical moisturisers (emollients) can be vital to managing the situation and avoiding painful cracks.

This is particularly true of your hands, which can be the most prone to dryness and cracking. You probably wash your hands constantly during the day, so each and every time you must apply specialist hand cream.

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