As many as 1 in 10 Americans are estimated to be living with eczema. Meanwhile, allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the United States, affecting tens of millions of people of all ages.
If you’re one of the families living with eczema or allergies, you know the huge impact this can have on your daily life. It can limit your child’s ability to play outside or go for a swim. It might force you to be extra cautious about chemical products in your home or even how you wash your clothing. And there’s always the frustrating itchiness or the embarrassing skin rashes.
Here are some ways you can help reduce eczema or allergy outbreaks in your family’s home:
Create a Stress-Free Home
Creating a healthy, happy home can include removing emotional factors, such as stress, which may be a contributing factor in symptoms. Stress has been shown to play a role in a variety of health problems, including skin conditions like dermatitis and eczema.
To reduce your family’s stress level, you could make your home a more soothing environment by bringing more nature into your home. Consider air-purifying plants, large windows to let in the sunshine, and artwork that depicts calming landscapes like the sea. You might also consider diffusing essential oils like lavender, which is said to be calming and relaxing.
Scientific studies have shown that there is a link between allergies and eczema. Therefore, reducing allergens in your home could potentially help both conditions. This can be an important step in turning your home into a clean, stress-free environment.
There are some specific things you can do, including washing the sheets and linens every week. This is great advice even for those who don’t have allergies or eczema, according to Philip Tierno, a microbiologist and pathologist at the New York University School of Medicine. As it turns out, our bed sheets contain “fungi, bacteria, animal dander, pollen, soil, lint, finishing agents of whatever the sheets are made from, coloring material” and an abundant supply of bodily excrements that I won’t mention here.
If that last sentence doesn’t have you rushing to wash your sheets, I don’t know what will.
Speaking of washing, you might also consider switching laundry detergents. Many people with eczema have experienced some relief after changing to all natural, fragrance free products that are specifically created for sensitive skin.
One final word of allergen-reducing advice: if you have pets, make sure they are frequently bathed and groomed. Not only can pet dander cause flare ups; so can the environmental allergens your dog or cat might track in from outdoors.
These itchy conditions are not contagious. However, doesn’t lessen amount of physical, mental, and emotional strain they cause for the millions of children and adults who’ve been diagnosed. Although there isn’t a cure, the advice listed above can work wonders in managing symptoms, reducing outbreaks, and helping your family live happy, healthy lives.