When people suffer from neurodermatitis, the cold season in particular is often very exhausting and sometimes even tormenting: the symptoms of people with sensitive skin range from itching and redness to painful eczema. The dry air from the heating and the cold wind outside make skin that is already prone to dryness even more susceptible to flare-ups of neurodermatitis – which can result in sweating or rashes. However, there are measures to counteract this so as not to suffer so much from the winter air. Here you will find the best tips for surviving the cold season with neurodermatitis.
Atopic dermatitis in winter – it depends on the right care
The basic rule in winter is: cream, cream, cream! This aspect is not only particularly important for people who suffer from neurodermatitis, but also for everyone else. The air in winter is significantly drier than in the other seasons and must therefore be equipped with a special protective barrier. See percomputer for Melkersson-Rosenthal Syndrome Explanation.
Valuable additives such as D-panthenol or urea are good suppliers of important fats in creams and lotions, which should be part of daily basic care. People with sensitive skin will know the problem that even very clear water can cause it to dry out slightly. Therefore, pay attention to moisturizing products if possible.
It is not for nothing that people with neurodermatitis appreciate going to warmer areas – i.e. the south – in the cold season. The humidity there works like a cure for stressed skin. The same applies to the healthy stimulating climate that you can enjoy, for example, on the North Sea or Baltic Sea as well as in higher mountainous areas.
The humidity is very low there, but the special stimulating climate is extremely good for blood circulation and therefore ideal for giving your skin a short break in winter. The skin’s surface appears smoother, more relaxed and rosier. Eczema or rashes also occur much less frequently.
Strengthen the protective barrier of the skin with the right measures
Anyone who attaches great importance to their skin care should protect themselves from ice and cold wind, especially in winter – this reduces the risk of getting a neurodermatitis flare-up. So take the time to give your skin plenty of moisture and essential oils twice a day, ideally in the morning after you get up and in the evening before you go to bed.
For this, doctors recommend creams that are specifically aimed at neurodermatitis patients. They contain numerous effective ingredients that the skin cannot produce itself in winter and therefore urgently needs from the outside. These include the protein filaggrin, which provides moisture, as well as horn fats such as ceramides.
After the first few days, you will quickly notice that the skin is less tense, itches less often and can withstand irritation from scratchy scarves or turtlenecks better. Basically, all parts of the skin that are constantly exposed to the weather in winter need additional protection from care products with a high fat content.
If you suffer from weeping rashes or reddened eczema, it can also help to take a warm bath twice a week, enriched with a bath additive containing tannins. This has a calming effect on the skin and ensures that the painful itching is relieved.
The right clothing can help with neurodermatitis in winter
Of course, when temperatures are below zero, you can hardly avoid moving directly from a cold environment to a warm building and back several times a day. The skin in particular is stressed and then often reacts by breaking out in a sweat or freezing.
This can be remedied with the right clothing. Instead of a thick jacket, it is better to choose the classic layered look, in which you wear several thin pieces of clothing on top of each other. This allows you to take off layers that are too warm for the ambient temperature and then put them on again when it gets cold again – a tip that can also be of great help to parents of small children and infants.
Quite a few parents fear that their child could freeze and therefore dress them in clothing that is far too warm. However, when you get back into the warmth with your little one, the thick wool sweater quickly feels very uncomfortable – and this means massive stress, especially for children’s sensitive skin.
It is best if the clothing is made of breathable, supple and skin-friendly material – such as cotton, fleece, jersey or viscose. This applies not only to tops and pants, but also to stockings, hats and scarves.
Make your home more humid
It’s no secret that heaters dry out the air in the room and can also stress the skin. However, a few tricks can help here: A bowl of water placed on the radiator or a humidifier are ideal for increasing the humidity – this is also good for the respiratory tract.
However, more moisture for the skin also comes from within: make sure you drink enough. It should be at least two liters per day; water and unsweetened tea are ideal. Coffee and black tea, on the other hand, should be consumed in moderation, as they tend to dehydrate the body.
When it comes to nutrition, fish with valuable omega-3 fatty acids, dairy products and whole grain products are good choices. And: Above all, rely on fresh fruit and vegetables that contain a high water content.
Through the winter without cortisone and Co. – more tips for care
If, despite all care, an attack should occur, most neurodermatitis patients use a cortisone cream or a cortisone preparation directly. For several years, however, there have also been creams without cortisone, which are known as calcineurin inhibitors and can help very quickly against eczema and itchy rashes.
If you use this medication early and regularly, you probably don’t have to worry about your skin – it’s best to contact your family doctor directly.
Regular care of face and body is essential for neurodermatitis sufferers. However, itching and dry heat can be contained with the tips given here at least so well that you don’t have to suffer too much from the symptoms in winter. It is important to treat the skin accordingly several times a day and to check again and again whether it needs more moisture.
Among other things, phytotherapy could also be a solution to get severe eczema or a painful rash under control. You should also avoid synthetic fibers such as polyester when it comes to clothing, as these can also irritate the skin. Daily showering should also always be done with moisturizing shower gels. Also, keep in mind that psychological stress can be an additional factor for flare-ups of neurodermatitis.
When should you go to the doctor?
People who suffer from diagnosed neurodermatitis do not normally need a doctor when the season changes. However, if you experience an increase in existing symptoms or if new irregularities appear, a doctor’s visit is advisable. Normally, a regular check of the skin is sufficient. However, if there are any changes, it is advisable to see a doctor before the next scheduled check-up visit.
It is part of the natural process for the skin to feel brittle and drier in winter. Skin care should be optimized when temperatures drop and adapted to the needs of the organism. The garments must also be checked for the ingredients of the processing. Unusual perspiration or a strong sensation of cold indicate clothing that is not suitable enough.
Anyone affected can initiate this without medical support. A doctor’s visit is only necessary if, despite all the changes made, there is no improvement or the discomfort increases. If people who have not previously had a diagnosed neurodermatitis suffer from persistent skin abnormalities, they should go to a doctor for an examination. In case of itching, inner restlessness or discoloration of the skin, a doctor is required. Open wounds or an increase in skin lesions need to be evaluated and treated.
Outlook & Forecast
Neurodermatitis is one of the chronic health diseases. Therefore, according to current medical knowledge, there is no cure for this skin disease. Under favorable conditions, a significant improvement in symptoms is achieved. Nevertheless, a relapse or a new development of symptoms can occur at any time. The further course of the disease almost always depends on the cooperation of the patient. Doctors and medical professionals concentrate on providing the best possible care for the patient’s skin, especially in winter. They provide special medicines that are always up to date with the latest scientific research and are intended to take care of the skin.
In addition, self-help measures or alternative healing methods can be used to ensure a positive course of the disease. Various home remedies, the optimization of the cosmetic items used and drug therapy have proven effective. The interaction of the different methods with the cooperation of the patient shows the best results so far.
Without the daily self-responsible care of the skin with the prescribed or used preparations, the general state of health deteriorates. There is an increase in symptoms and well-being decreases. Positive developments can also be documented if psychotherapy is used at the same time. Mental stress is often present, which, when overcome, also results in physical improvement.
With falling temperatures in winter, the skin of many people begins to itch uncomfortably again. Since neurodermatitis is often accompanied by itching, dryness and feelings of tension in those affected, the winter months cause further problems. The dry air from the heating and the cool outside temperatures also irritate the skin.
It is therefore important to adequately protect skin affected by neurodermatitis. The right cream is mandatory. The general rule of thumb is: wet on wet, fat on dry. That means: Weeping neurodermatitis should be better treated with water-based creams. Dry, cracked skin should be greased with ointments. The exposed facial skin must not be spared, especially in the winter months.
Sufficient, rich care protects against new outbreaks. The choice of clothes also plays a crucial role. Wool or synthetic fibers can also chafe the skin. Despite everything, diet is also crucial in winter: greasy, sugary and often industrially processed meals can trigger further flare-ups.
On the other hand, a fresh diet with vegetables and healthy fats can help improve the skin. In winter there are also relaxing baths with salt and oil solutions. This tried and tested home remedy quickly relieves symptoms. On the other hand, those affected should avoid going to the sauna even in winter, because sweating can cause further eczema, and excessive, hot showers.
Medicinal plants can also be a solution
Classical medicine is not the only way to combat neurodermatitis in winter: there are also numerous remedies in nature that you can try out. Naturopathic doctors recommend herbs such as chamomile blossoms, oak bark extract, magic shrub leaves and oat straw extract, among other things, to relieve redness or weeping rashes. In the case of severe eczema, on the other hand, borage seed oil, balloon vine, evening primrose oil or bittersweet stems are recommended.