Why do I have eczema on my hands? When I was younger I hated having eczema on my hands and I would ask my mum “why do I have eczema on my hands” I’m sure if you have Eczema you have said the same thing or thought it at some point in your life or heard your child say it. Right?
My own son used to say this all the time ” Dad, why do I have eczema on my hands” and we would spend hours trying to convince him he wasn’t alone and other people had Eczema and some worse than himself. It was really hard to watch his self-esteem drop and we spent as much time caring for his mental well-being as we did care for his Eczema.
YOU’RE NOT ALONE
There are 35 Million people in the US alone that suffer from some form of Eczema and millions of adults worldwide suffer from Eczema at some point in their lives.
Please take the term ECZEMA lightly as there are many different forms of Eczema. Saying Eczema is like saying ICE CREAM, the first thing you would say is, what Flavour right? There are lots of different types of Eczema, while they all look the same, they’re not.
Atopic Dermatitis, which is chronic and inherited is the most common kind in children. About 90% of cases occur before the child is age 5, and symptoms tend to ease as the child gets older. Adults tend to have CONTACT DERMATITIS, which is inflammation that occurs when skin comes in contact with irrupting substances such as soap, washing powder, or other chemicals.
The common factor between all forms of Eczema is that the skins protective barrier is damaged. When this happens the moisture quickly evaporates and the skin becomes dry and Itchy.
Everyone wants to know
HOW TO CURE ECZEMA – but sometimes the mental side of their lives are just as important as the physical side of Eczema. When you or your child get fed up or depressed with the whole Eczema lifestyle it only makes it worse. Your body reacts differently and the symptoms can get worse as your body starts to give up and you get tired and start feeling down or emotionally drained.
Then the vicious cycle begins, trying to care for the Eczema and any infections and also trying to pick the persons spirits up again and get their body to start fighting the Eczema.
There is no way of telling if your Eczema will go away completely, But it’s possible your symptoms will reduce as you or your child grows older 70% of sufferers see improvement past their teenage years. You may still have the odd ECZEMA FLARE UP but you will have learned to manage your Eczema better by then.
EXPLAINING TO YOUR CHILDREN
As I also suffer from Eczema I used my example in life situations a lot to my son, telling him how it will get better, He asked us many times ‘why do I have eczema on my hands’ and why do I have eczema. We never told him he would be cured, but I let him know it never stopped me living my life to the fullest.
Although I was honest about things like In school at Sports and P.E I hated getting undressed or changing in front of people due to embarrassment.
In summer everyone is wearing T-Shirts and short sleeve shirts but I always had long-sleeved shirts on trying to cover my Eczema on my arms. But I also showed him it never stopped my finding a wife to share my life with or stopped my having beautiful children like him and having a good job and good friends.
You should never let Eczema or any medical conditions stop you living your life the way you want to. It is tough, don’t get me wrong the pain and time-consuming routine of Creaming and Wrapping etc does take its toll but it shouldn’t stop you. In one way it can make you more confident and outgoing as you have to fight for things more. Later in life as your Eczema eases a little, you know nothing is going to be as tough as your younger years living with Eczema.
If you don’t look after the mental side effects of eczema this can lead to depression and other mental issues. Read our latest article on ‘ Eczema and Depression-How to cope ‘
DEALING WITH RELATIONSHIP AND ECZEMA
When I was younger and I’m sure my son currently Is going through the same thing, All I worried about for years was all about GIRLS and when I need to get undressed in front of one for the first time. What will she say? will she scream and run away? Well, my first wife and my current one were fine with my Eczema. Very supportive and caring and I’m blessed to have found such lovely people. But not everyone will be so lucky, there will be hurtful comments said and strange look’s but again these have to be addressed and younger children prepared for such occasions. I say to my son if this happens then they don’t deserve to be with you and they weren’t the right person for you anyway, move on and find someone who’s caring and compassionate.
Before I talk specifically about ECZEMA ON YOUR HANDS, Let’s talk about some ECZEMA MYTHS !!
CAN STRESS CAUSE ECZEMA?
Stress cannot cause Eczema but it can contribute to exacerbating it. Stress increases the hormone cortisol, which damages the skins ability to hold moisture, increasing dryness.
IS ECZEMA CONTAGIOUS?
The simple answer is NO. The only thing I would say is, If your Eczema is really bad with open wounds you will need to be careful not to get infections. Virus-like Herpes can be contracted and you need to be careful. But day to day Eczema is not contagious.
CAN FOOD AFFECT ECZEMA?
YES, certain foods can affect Eczema and you can ask your doctor to arrange for you or your child to be allergy tested and also Prick tested for other irritants. My own son is affected if he drinks too much milk. TOP TIP FOR ECZEMA AND FOODS, keep a diary each day of what your child eat’s and try spot trends in flare up’s and food eaten.
CAN I GO SWIMMING WITH ECZEMA?
YES!. Eczema should never stop you from having fun, however, the chlorine can lead to flare up’s. And whilst in the pool, the skin’s affected patches can increase and become Itchy. Your child will then scratch and can open up the skin which can lead to infection. One tip is to cream heavily about 30 minutes before you or your child go into the pool. This will help create a protective barrier and stop Itching. PLEASE NOTE! As I have learned, skin cream’s and water become very slippery so be careful when entering and leaving the pool. Then make sure you shower and apply cream within 5 minutes of getting out before the skin dry’s up.
WILL GOING GLUTEN FREE OR BECOMING A VEGETARIAN HELP MY ECZEMA?
NO.! Unless you have celiac disease going gluten-free will not help one bit. Becoming a vegetarian again will not help your Eczema. That is a whole different topic, but studies have shown cutting these thing’s out had no effect on Eczema.
WILL SMOKING OR ALCOHOL AFFECT MY ECZEMA?
YES!.. Cigarettes have hundreds of toxins and it’s hard to tell which one affect’s Eczema. But it’s safe to say they do, many studies have confirmed this. The smoke can aggravate Eczema and is a trigger point. I know from personal experience, ( I’m not a smoker ) but when I’m in a room for a long period of time with smokers when I get home I find my skin is really dry.
The impact of long-term smoking will reduce the blood flow which is vital for the skin to heel.
Drinking alcohol often dries out the skin, as well as dilating the blood vessels, meaning Eczema becomes more red and itchier and painful.
Alcohol will dry the skin and this will make it harder to moisturize.
CAN TOO MANY SHOWERS BE BAD FOR ECZEMA?
This subject is a real hard one, everyone is different and showering can help some people and make thing’s worse for others.
Extreme changes in temperatures can affect the skin dramatically, so if the shower is too warm or too cold this can affect your ECZEMA. Also, the type of soap and shampoo you use is more of a factor in my opinion. Also after showering you must cream whilst the skin is warm and moist.
To justify me saying this I use my own experiences. My son was alway’s better with a cool shower and creamed after, this calmed him down ready for bed and cooled his skin which relaxed his body. On the other hand Bath’s and Shower’s for myself dried me out, no matter how much cream I put on after and this is still true today?
Hence the reason I say everyone is different. It’s trial and error and working out what works best for you or your child.
One of the hardest parts for me was ECZEMA ON THE HANDS and this is the reason for this article. I was called Alien and other horrible names at school or people would say “you have Grandad hands ” to me all the time. I was embarrassed to shake peoples hands in case they noticed my old looking hands. Even now at 46, my hands look 60!
When I recently got Remarried, I was only bothered about how my hand’s would look in the wedding ring photos. Silly I know, but these are the little thing’s that someone who suffer’s from Eczema worry about.
And to you or an outsider it’s easy to say ‘ Don’t worry about it ‘ Well… We do and these areas shouldn’t be taken lightly.
So what can you do to help reduce Eczema on the hands? I always say Reduce not cure because I’ve never met anyone who had bad or extreme Eczema and was totally cured. Yes, you can reduce it and this is why I’m writing this article and why I set up this website to help people manage and reduce Eczema and try live as much of a normal life as possible. Whatever NORMAL is!
HERE IS A HELPFUL YOUTUBE VIDEO ON HAND ECZEMA
What can you do to help ease Eczema on the hand.?
Well simply put you need to cream and moisturize every chance you get, I use DIPROBASE but please consult your doctor before applying any new creams. Unfortunately, there is no miracle answer it’s all about managing the symptom’s and not curing them. As I said before the symptoms may decrease but they will never go away.
Tip one: Always wear gloves when working with your hand’s, washing up glove’s, thick gloves for manual labor. Most people think my hands are dry so it doesn’t matter if I rough them up working with them but its so important to protect them. Once they get cut or damaged you’re on a hard road to recovery. It can take me 10 minutes to harm my hand’s and about a week to get them back on track.
Tip Two: Carry cream everywhere you go and cream whenever possible, I have a tub of cream in nearly every room and in the car and even a tub of cream at work.
TIP THREE: If you have no cream available, run your hand’s under warm water for a few minutes to soften them and pat them dry. Not! Hot water but Luke warm, I find this ease’s the itchiness and dryness. It doesn’t last long but it’s a short-term solution if you haven’t any cream available.
TIP FOUR: Cream and then put on latex glove’s for 10 minutes to allow the cream to soak into the skin and not evaporate.
TIP FIVE: Protect the tip’s of your fingers, If they get cracked they become very painful and take about 2 weeks to recover. I use plaster’s on the end’s of each finger before I go to bed and when I wake up there softer and less painful.
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