An annoyed woman scratching dry skin in winter

Eczema: No Matter What, It Always Returns

I need to be grateful for the small pockets of eczema free time I occasionally enjoy. There are not many of them, and even when I am lucky enough to go through one, it is never 100% clear.

Why does eczema always come back?

It has taken me years to accept that no matter what, the eczema always returns. There are too many triggers to try and prevent from happening. Environmental and genetic factors mean that it is almost impossible for me to fully eradicate this debilitating skin issue. For example, the cold air has fully kicked in over here which has taken its toll on my asthma. This has led to an eczema flare. It is not a surprise to most that the two conditions usually go hand-in-hand. Earlier this month I took a trip away to a warmer climate to try and jump on my condition before I knew the real challenges would come. That being the UK winter season!

How did a vacation clear my skin?

While away, the the average temperature was around 30°C accompanied by a cool breeze which made the living conditions absolutely perfect for me. My body did not take long to heal at all. What with the good food, sunshine, and soft salty water I could live as a normal person. It felt amazing and I had a great time with my friends. My skin was so silky, that I could not stop running my hands over my body. Yes, I did type that last sentence!! Sue me! Like all good times, they pass quickly and no sooner was I back when things started to go wrong very quickly.

When did my eczema return?

When I returned home the weather was freezing and I could feel my body becoming sick. Had I caught something on the plane? Whatever it was, I knew it wasn't in my head. Pretty soon after, I developed a fever and my eczema spread all across my body (mainly on my arms, and hands, and legs). My mental state was pretty low. I had just spent a week away on holiday and got myself in a good position for the winter and here I was scratching myself to bits again. As I write this, I am in recovery and am not overthinking things. Taking each day as it comes is my approach right now.

What will I do for the rest of the year?

For the rest of the year, I will need to take the usual precautions. Making sure my apartment is warm but not too hot, taking warm showers before bed, applying lots of moisturizers, and wrapping up warm when venturing outside. Keeping my expectations low is important. If I think I can get into the same condition as I was in while away on holiday - well this would not be realistic at all. And if I did think like this I would feel extremely disappointed. These last few months of the year will be challenging and it is a case of damage limitation really. It's time for us eczema warriors to buckle up as we head into the winter.

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