The change in seasons may be wreaking havoc on your skin health and trigger symptoms of dermatitis.
Dermatitis is a general term for many types of skin irritations. Its symptoms include skin reddening, itchiness, flaking, swelling, discoloration and even painful blistering.
These symptoms can become annoying and highly uncomfortable in severe cases, but there are home remedies that you can try to keep the discomfort to a minimum.
These tips do not replace a visit to your dermatologist, but here are 5 natural remedies for dermatitis to help manage your symptoms and prevent sudden flares:
1. Coconut Oil
This organic oil contains healthy fatty acids that can help bring back the moisture to your skin, addressing the dry skin that usually comes with dermatitis.
Coconut oil also helps improve the natural health of the skin’s layers, and also fight inflammation.
To use this, apply cold-pressed coconut oil directly to your skin after bathing, and repeat several times in a day. Apply it before bedtime to ensure your skin is moisturized overnight.
2. Colloidal Oatmeal
These are oats boiled to extract their skin-healing properties.
A 2015 research reported that colloidal oatmeal topical products had anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that improved dermatitis symptoms such as itchiness, roughness, scaling, and skin dryness.
To use this, simply add powdered colloidal oatmeal to warm bath water and soak. Make sure to buy pure oat products, sans the skin-irritating additives and fragrances.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
ACV is a staple home remedy for many skin issues, including dermatitis.
Apple cider vinegar may relieve irritation by Fighting bacteria – Some studies found that ACV may prevent broken skin from getting infected.
Balancing the skin’s acidity levels – ACV is highly acidic. The skin is also naturally acidic, but people with dermatitis have less acidic skin than normal. This may result in weakened skin defense mechanisms.
To use ACV for dermatitis, dilute 1 tablespoon of the vinegar with 1 cup of warm water, and apply to affected skin areas.
4. Aloe Vera Gel
Harvested from the leaves of an aloe plant, this cooling gel is used to treat a variety of skin issues. One common use is to soothe irritated skin.
A study from 2015 found that aloe vera has antimicrobial, antibacterial, wound-healing, and immune-system boosting properties, that prevent skin infections, soothe broken skin and promote healing.
Aloe vera gels can be purchased in many health stores or harvested directly from an aloe leaf. If you’re buying from shops, choose aloe products with fewer ingredients as added components such as fragrances and alcohol can make dermatitis worse.
5. Bleach Bath
While this may sound hazardous, research actually suggests that adding bleach to your bath water may improve symptoms of dermatitis due to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects.
Bleach can kill the bacteria on your skin’s surface including the ones that cause staph infections, restoring your skin’s natural microbiome.
A 2015 study indicated that bleach baths could decrease the need for antibiotic or corticosteroid treatments for dermatitis.
To use this, take a half cup of regular strength bleach and add it to a full bathtub of water, or 1 teaspoon of bleach in a gallon of water, and soak affected skin areas for 5-10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly with warm water and pat dry.