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Treating Eczema on Feet and Hands

Most people look forward to spring and summer; warmer weather means it’s time for gardening, golfing, swimming, and sitting on the porch. But for eczema sufferers, rising temperatures are an unwelcome sign that they may soon find themselves afflicted with red, rough, itchy skin.

All types of eczema are harder to manage at this time of year, but one type is especially bad because it prevents those affected by it from being able to handle gardening tools or golf clubs, and it can make walking barefoot across hot pavement at the poolside or even through soft grass too painful to bear. Known as pompholyx or dyshidrotic eczema, this condition affects only the feet and hands, unlike other types of eczema that can appear anywhere on the body.  In this article we will discuss some tips and methods for treating eczema on feet and hands.

How Do You Get Eczema?

treating eczema on feet and handsDoctors don’t yet know the exact cause of any type of eczema, but they have discovered some genetic links that may be used to predict who is more likely to get it. Eczema is hereditary, so if your parents or grandparents had eczema, you’re likely to have it too, and you’re even more likely to have it if hay fever and/or asthma run in your family as well.

Who Has Dyshidrotic Eczema?

A rare condition compared to atopic dermatitis, the most common type of eczema, dyshidrotic eczema affects only 0.02% of Americans – roughly 1 in 5,000 people. Women are twice as likely to develop it, and around 50% of people who already have a more common form of eczema have this type of eczema as well.

What Does Dyshidrotic Eczema Look Like?

Dyshidrotic eczema usually manifests as tiny blisters that form on the palms of the hands, along the sides and soles of the feet, and between and on top of the toes.It is usually easy to recognize because the blisters tend to form in tight clusters that resemble the look of tapioca pudding. (If you love tapioca, I hope this didn’t ruin it for you.) When it appears on the feet, it is easily confused with another common skin condition called athlete’s foot, which is caused by a fungal infection. Even doctors cannot tell the difference between these two conditions just by looking at them; they must examine scrapings of the skin under a microscope and do a culture on the affected area.

Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream with Cort-Emu Complex

Should You See a Doctor?

If you develop blisters or a rash on your feet, it is extremely important that you see a doctor for a confirmed diagnosis before attempting to treat the condition yourself. Creams containing hydrocortisone are excellent for eczema, but if hydrocortisone is applied directly to a case of athlete’s foot without any additional treatment, it can actually make the condition worse. It’s never a good idea to self-diagnose.

Choosing the Best Dyshidrotic Eczema Treatment

Once your doctor confirms that you have eczema and not athlete’s foot, if your outbreak is severe, he or she may prescribe steroid tablets. Steroids, especially those taken orally, should only be used for a short period of time because they can cause serious side effects; however, if taken as directed, they can greatly reduce or even get rid of the rash, although they can’t completely cure the condition. Phototherapy, or light therapy, is another type of treatment that involves exposing the affected area to machine-generated UVB rays, which mimic natural sunlight minus the harmful UVA rays; while 60-70% of patients see improvement with phototherapy, it usually takes 1-2 months to become effective.

Treating Eczema Over-the-Counter

In addition to prescribing steroids or phototherapy, your doctor will probably recommend an anti-itch cream containing hydrocortisone to combat itching and inflammation, the worst symptoms of eczema. Enter Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream with CORT-EMU Complex, which combines a powerful concentration of hydrocortisone with the deep-penetrating power of pure emu oil – packing a punch to defeat your itch and bring you immediate relief. Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream is the best cream for itchy skin because it doesn’t sting, doesn’t smell, and doesn’t make as big a mess as other creams and ointments; plus, it’s an excellent treatment for any kind of itch, whether it’s poison ivy, bug bites, or psoriasis.

How to Prevent Eczema on the Feet

Like its more common cousin, atopic dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema can be triggered by allergies, sweat, dry skin, and stress. If you already have eczema, you know to avoid foods, pollen, perfumes, nickel, and other things that can cause an allergic reaction, and you also know the importance of carefully monitoring your stress levels to avoid triggering a breakout.

What you may not know is that using a topical over-the-counter cream like Blue Emu Anti-Itch Cream with CORT-EMU Complex twice a day for at least one week after a round of steroid pills, phototherapy, or any other kind of treatment can help you manage your symptoms between.

To get the most out of your treatments, including the use of Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream, wear sandals whenever possible, and if you must wear shoes, make sure to change your socks several times a day; while moisture is usually beneficial for the treatment of eczema, moisture from sweat can actually trigger or worsen an outbreak. Don’t try to pop or drain the blisters, as this could lead to an infection. Soak your feet in a diluted solution of Burow’s solution, witch hazel, or potassium permanganate, all of which can be bought over-the-counter at a pharmacy or grocery store, 2-4 times daily for 15 minutes at a time. Pat your feet dry with a soft towel, then gently apply Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream with CORT-EMU Complex to the affected areas, followed by a layer of an emollient cream or petroleum jelly. Wear soft socks to trap the “good” moisture after following these steps and before getting into bed.

Blue-Emu Anti-Itch Cream with Cort-Emu Complex

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