Dyshidrotic eczema: Tips for managing
Making some simple changes to your everyday routine can help clear your skin and prevent flares. Dermatologists recommend the following to their patients who have dyshidrotic eczema (DE):
- Wash skin with DE gently : When washing, you’ll want to:
- Apply moisturizer frequently: You’ll want to apply moisturizer:
Remove rings: Always remove these before washing your hands. If the skin beneath your ring gets wet and stays damp, the DE can flare.
Use lukewarm water: Using lukewarm water every time can help prevent flares.
Wash with mild, fragrance-free cleansers: Skip the antibacterial soaps, waterless hand sanitizers, and deodorant soaps, which can cause DE to flare.
- After washing
- Throughout the day when your skin feels dry.
Dermatologists often recommend using a product called a barrier repair cream that contains dimethicone. This product allows skin to breathe. It also helps relieve itch and creates a barrier to protect you from things that can irritate your skin.
If you opt to use another moisturizer, make sure it is:
- Thick and creamy
- Fragrance free (“Fragrance free” and “unscented” are different.)
- Something you like enough to use frequently
Avoid moisturizer that is thin and runny as are many lotions. Lotions contain a lot of water, which can worsen DE.
It can be helpful to continue finding ways to relieve your stress. Many people say that the DE returns when they feel stressed.
- Have an allergy
- Be irritating your skin
Your dermatologist can ask questions to find out if something is irritating your skin. Allergy testing can find out whether you have allergies.
- Wear 100% cotton gloves (hands won’t get wet)
- Wear 100% cotton gloves under waterproof gloves (wet work)
- Washing your hands
- Applying moisturizer
- Going to sleep
Habif TP, Campbell JL, et al. “Pompholyx” (card #16). In: Dermatology DDxDeck. Mosby 2006.
Miller JL, Hurley HJ. “Diseases of the eccrine and apocrine sweat glands.” In: Bolognia JL, Jorizzo JL, et al, eds. Dermatology. Mosby Elsevier 2008. p. 543.