5 Things That Are Causing Your Eczema To Flare Up

Photographed by Brayden Olson.
We all complain about dry, scaly skin in the winter, but when you deal with eczema, you know the true meaning of dry. The skin ailment causes itchy, red, and oftentimes swollen patches of skin to form — and, of course, they only get worse when you scratch them.

When it comes to skin diseases like eczema, controlling outbreaks or flare-ups is a constant battle. Worrying about the appearance is the least of it — the itchiness, discomfort, and pain can actually cause serious problems.

Oftentimes, flare-ups are actually caused by things that we don’t even realize, like a simple shower. Here, with the help of Lauren Abramowitz, cosmetic dermatology practitioner and founder of Park Avenue Skin Solutions, we break down some of the lesser-known triggers — so you can avoid them and minimize your risk.
Cranking Up Your Shower Heat
Many eczema sufferers turn up the heat in the shower to relieve the itchy feeling on their skin (even for just a minute), but what they don’t realize is that they’re actually making things worse. The heat from the shower simply exacerbates the problem, in turn causing more dryness and lack of moisture in the skin.

That Brunch Date
We’ve all heard that what you eat can play a major role in your complexion. That’s true when it comes to eczema flare-ups, as well. Foods such as eggs, nuts, seeds, soy products, wheat, and diary are known to cause issues with sufferers, so it’s better to avoid them.

Your BFF Who Smokes
Most people don’t think about their outside environment having an effect on their personal skin care, but smoke can be a trigger for a lot of eczema patients, says Abramowitz. So, even if you’re not a smoker, if you’re close to someone who is, it could be playing a role.

All Of Those Allergens
Along with smoke, allergens, like pollen and dust mites, can also play a role in causing outbreaks. If you’re allergic to pets or mold, this can also cause reactions, as well.

Extreme Temperatures
Like most skin conditions, facing extreme temperatures and seasonal changes can be rough, but especially for eczema sufferers. “Colder weather strips skin of its natural moisture, which can lead to red patches, clogged pores, and excess dead skin. Summer then brings excess heat; and the humidity increases the production of hyperhidrosis (sweat production)f, which has more oil to clog pores, leading to the decrease of cell renewal,” Abramowitz told us.

More from Skin Care