How to care for your atopic skin?
The skin barrier of atopic skin is permanently damaged and subject to external allergens and irritable agents, that cause inflammation and itchiness. Scratching this itchiness will in turn aggravate the damage to the skin barrier. Thus completing the atopic skin’s “vicious cycle”.
Breaking the cycle….
Prevention is essential!
Use moisturizing and restructuring products right after birth, they will be able to prevent skin dryness and evolution to atopic dermatitis.
Seek professional help
See your dermatologist or pediatrician for a proper diagnosis and follow their advice. It might be good to keep a journal of the treatment, noting the outbreaks and remission phases.
Take a bath no longer than 5 to 10 minutes, avoiding hot water (maximum 32ºC to 35 ºC), this will prevent the skin from being overly dry.
Choose products that are soap and fragrance-free, specific for atopic skin, and make sure they are soft and nourishing.
After the bath, dry the skin gently with the towel, without rubbing it.
Moisturize! Moisturize! Moisturize!
Again the chosen products should be adequate for atopic skin, preferably fragrance-free. Try looking for products that not only treat the symptoms (like inflammation and itchiness) but are also able to repair the skin’s barrier function.
Moisturize at least 1-2 times per day.
Dress to impress!
Actually, the only one you really need to impress is your skin, caring for it by choosing the proper clothing. Avoid wool and synthetic fibers as they can cause irritation to the skin, always prefer cotton clothing. Don’t use too much clothing on the atopic baby/child. Remove all tags that can graze the skin.
Keep your clothes off bleach and softeners, minimize the use of detergents, and always choose softer ones. After washing always rinse your clothing really well.
Keep a good environment
During winter don’t overheat your home.
Make sure to avoid objects that can accumulate a lot of dust (carpets, furry rugs, pillows or toys, mattresses or quilts made of feathers…). But don’t deprive your children from their pets, unless there is a known allergy to them.
As with any other child or adult, sun protection is mandatory.
Avoid sun exposure between 11h – 16h, and direct exposure even during other hours. Children under the age of 3 should also avoid being in the sun. Don’t forget the t-shirt, hat and sunglasses. Apply sunscreen regularly, with high SPF and preferably with 100% mineral filters.
Physical exercise is important to keep healthy and stress-free. However, excessive perspiration can worsen the itchiness.
During an outbreak, please avoid sea or pool water.
Most of the time there is no need for particular changes in your diet unless you are dealing with some kind of food allergy. However, it is important to pay attention and see if some kinds of food might be triggering an outbreak, such as dairy products, vegetables or fruit (especially tropical fruits).
Sometimes a crisis can justify the use of dermo-corticoid products. These will have to be prescribed by your doctor according to his evaluation. In order to properly use these products there are also a few rules you can follow:
- Apply on clean and dry skin
- Apply a small amount on the required lesion and gently massage
- Follow your doctor’s instruction strictly
- Always inform your doctor about the products you are using and how you are applying them
- Do not use dermo-corticoids for longer than advised before consulting with your doctor again.
At our store we sell a wide variety of dermo-cosmetic products that can be used for atopic skin, whether during an outbreak or remission phase. You can check them here.