Managing eczema-prone skin

"Maintaining your skin's moisture level is very important especially if you have eczema-prone skin.. In fact, the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA) says:

"It is vital to keep skin prone to eczema well hydrated with regular moisturising.

ASCIA, Eczema (atopic dermatitis)

But why? Frequent moisturising helps replace moisture lost through the disturbed skin barrier which can be seen in eczema-prone skin.  (see The differences in eczema-prone skin for more information.) Eczema-prone skin is deficient in some of the vital components that help lock moisture into the skin.2 This leads to moisture constantly being lost, and if it isn’t replenished then you can wind up with dry, dehydrated skin that's susceptible to environmental irritants working their way inside.3"

Maintaining your skin's moisture level is very important especially if you're prone to eczema.

"How often should I be moisturising?

ASCIA recommends moisturising as often as possible and after every bath or shower.1  The frequency of application can be especially important if you spend a lot of time in dry or hot conditions (like in the air-con at your office or outside in windy, humid weather outside). If water is left on the skin to evaporate after bathing, more moisture loss can occur.4 To prevent this, moisturising immediately afterwards is recommended to help preserve the moisture in your skin.1

To find the best way to maintain your skin's hydration, talk to your dermatologist, GP or pharmacist. They can work with you to figure out how to manage your eczema-prone skin.

It may help you to learn more about some key components of your skin like ceramides, so you can understand what's happening and how to manage it."

References

1. "ASCIA, Information for patients, consumers and carers; Eczema (atopic dermatitis) [internet], 2015 [updated 2015; cited 2018 May 11]. Available from: https://www.allergy.org.au/images/pcc/ASCIA_PCC_Eczema_2015.pdf

2. Sajic D, Asiniwasis R, Skotnicki-Grant S. A Look at Epidermal Barrier Function in Atopic Dermatitis: Physiologic Lipid Replacement and the Role of Ceramides. Skin Therapy Lett. 2012; 17(7):6-9.

3. Hon K.L, Leung K.C, Barankin B. Barrier Repair Therapy in Atopic Dermatitis: An Overview. Am J Clin Dermatol. 2013; 14:389-399.

4. Eichenfield L.F, Tom W.L, Berger T.G, Krol A, Paller A.S, Schwarzenberger K. et al. Guidelines of care for the management of atopic dermatitis: Part 2: Management and Treatment of Atopic Dermatitis with Topical Therapies. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014; 71(1):116–132.