Fibro Daily

Eczema: My Itchy, Burning Enemy

Fibro Daily January 20, 2017

Let’s be honest: I don’t feel like putting a positive spin on eczema. It is a wretched, itchy skin condition that stings and causes severe irritation. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

I hate my eczema. I imagine George Fox hated his, too.
Eczema_erythematosum

For me, the condition started in relation to a hyperthyroid and even though my thyroid is better managed now, eczema still causes me problems. It’s not a constant, but the irritation pops up when I’m PMSing and it ravages me. I used to suffer from cramps every month; now I suffer from red, itchy eyelids that burn and peel. Sometimes, it extends to my brow area.

Oh, how I miss those cramps.

And another thing: Why my eyelids? Why not my elbows? It might look better. But no: Eczema just LOVES my eyelids and brow areas.

In my case, the doctor says I might have atopic dermatitis which does affect the eyes. And the menstrual cycle qualifies as a trigger.

Furthermore, I’ve missed getting my period for months on end. It appears I’m low on progesterone. The doctor gave me progesterone pills to jump start my period, but the progesterone pills caused an allergic reaction that included hives and trouble breathing. Therefore, another theory about my eye trouble is that it may stem from autoimmune progesterone dermatitis. That means that the bit of progesterone my body produces around my period might cause the eruption on my eyes.

Yeah, eczema definitely spurns a ton of complaints. If you suffer from it, I’m sure you have your own list of complaints about the terrible $&!%. What I wanted to know is if eczema’s going to last forever or if it will eventually fade. I mean, it stopped recurring on other parts of my face so will my eye areas eventually get better, too?

Eczema Basics

Eczema is a notoriously hard condition to fight.

The medications or lotions that help soothe outbreaks in others don’t work for everyone. It’s not like type 1 diabetics who must all take insulin (though the doses and types of insulin vary.) Eczema remedies depend on genetics, lifestyle, and allergies. Therefore, if your friend found relief from tea tree oil or coconut oil or steroid cream, none of those may work for you.

Here’s more bad news: More than one type of eczema exists. To even begin to fight it, you need to know which kind affects you. The National Eczema Association names the following types of eczema:

  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Contact dermatitis
  • Dyshidrotic eczema
  • Hand eczema
  • Neurodermatitis
  • Nummular eczema
  • Stasis dermatitis
  • The National Eczema Association further explains:

    All of these cause itching and redness, but some may also cause your skin to blister, “weep,” or peel. The most common type, which can also be severe and long-lasting, is atopic dermatitis (AD). It’s important to understand which type you or your child may have and also your symptoms and triggers so that you can best treat and manage your eczema. But the only way to be sure that you or your child has eczema and which type is to make an appointment with your doctor.

    Natural and Not So Natural Remedies

    1_2d3a5572-3240-4e4e-bbba-d3d8d1661b7d_largeNatural remedies work wonders for many. That said, some of them made me want to claw my eyes OFF my face. Coconut oil, tea tree oil, aloe vera, and olive oil are just a few of the natural items I tried. Even though my issues likely stems from hormones, I thought that my skin might experience some relief anyway. None of these items offered many any relief. Some made it worse.

    The only thing that’s provided relief for my symptoms is a prescription steroid cream but I only use it as a last resort. That’s because it can cause vision problems and thinning of the eyelid skin. I’m not against using a steroid creme, but using one requires strict adherence to the directions. You will never be able to use it enough to bring lasting relief. And I do use cleansing products geared for eczema, but I had to try a lot of them before finding two that work. Some really hurt me plus caused more peeling.

    Whatever remedy you try, just use a little bit at a time until you know if it irritates you or not. Ask your doctor for guidance. Never make the mistake of thinking that just because it’s natural, it works wonders or is even healthy. Remember that nature and safe are NOT synonyms. Think of arsenic, fire, poison ivy, the flu; they should all serve as helpful reminders.

    But whether it’s natural or not, all you can do is try at your own pace. Ask your doctor for guidance so you stay safe.

    The Fibro-Eczema Connection

    Rather than link to different sites that mention eczema and fibromyalgia, I will say this instead: There’s no concrete evidence that fibromyalgia leads to eczema.

    I’ve read about fibro patients who suffer from relentless itching and dry skin. Whether or not it qualifies as eczema proves hard to ascertain, though some patients swear they do. I suspect that because fibromyalgia causes a host of sensitivities from allergies to stress, a good deal of fibro patients develop some form of eczema.

    See your doctor and make sure your skin condition is eczema; never self-diagnose. Also, if you spend time perusing Google, you will eventually diagnose yourself with every disease ever known to humans. That’s because many diseases share symptoms. Medical testing provides the most reliable way to determine an ailment. May you find relief. Good luck!

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