A basic feature of eczema is often the seasonal deterioration of skin symptoms in the winter. However, although most people living with eczema have fewer flares in the summertime, many see their skin condition also worsen in warmer weather.
Eczema typically has an intermittent course with flares and remissions occurring often for unexplained reasons. Understanding the seasonal patterns and the possible triggers of a worsening could help you to prevent flare-ups through proactive management.
You will find below some of the possible summertime triggers of eczema flare-ups and what to do to counter them:
Heat: The high temperatures can worsen the itching sensation, so try to avoid the warmest temperatures by planning outdoor activities early in the morning or in the evening. Drink plenty of water while you are out in the warm weather.
Sweating: Sweat can irritate the skin. To avoid this wipe away any accumulation of sweat with soft paper wipes or a towel. This prevents pooling of excess sweat, especially in the skin folds, such as the inner elbows and neck, areas affected commonly by eczema.
Air conditioning: Air conditioners take moisture out of the air and can dry out your skin so apply your moisturiser even more often than usual.
Sunscreens: Certain ingredients in the chemical sunscreens can irritate the skin. Consider instead using physical sunscreens with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for UV protection. A hat and lightweight long sleeves and pants can further help reduce exposure to the sun.
Swimming in saltwater or in chlorinated pools: Chlorine is an irritant and salt can pull water out of your skin faster. Remember therefore to rinse with fresh water and apply moisturiser after rinsing to reduce dryness and to lock in the moisture.
Despite these possible triggers, summer can be a rather good season for eczematous skin, especially if you take the above precautions and continue your eczema treatment with regular moisturisers and your prescribed medications.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. HelloSkin disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.