As an eczema sufferer with chronic eczema, I would like to address the feeling of PAIN. Pain comes in goes but constantly comes back with eczema. It is something that we don't tend to talk about often. Pain and showing signs of weakness are not seen very often in the community. When, in fact, we are all suffering and constantly challenged by different kinds of pain.
Where I currently experience pain is in the following areas: knees, legs, and hands. My eczema tends to follow these places in my body the most.
Knee and leg flares
For a few months now, I have been battling with knee/leg eczema. The pain I have been feeling comes in and goes away. Yet, I feel a bit of pain every day, even if it's only for a short amount of time. I tend to take ibuprofen daily to calm down the pain. What I feel when this happens are small shocks. Imagine you are getting poked by a needle when they are drawing your blood work. It feels like that with my skin but 10x times worse. That is one of the reasons why I also don't like to get my blood work done.
What does it feel like there?
Also, I have noticed I feel like my skin is being attacked by small ants and followed up by intense itching. When you scratch to the point that you start to see blood come out of your skin, you might ask yourself, isn't it easier to just not scratch? Well, in my experience, I have noticed that if I stop scratching, I end up feeling worse after. I have been resorting to getting an ice pack and cooling that area of the body quickly.
Flares on my hands
The second location in which pain comes for me is my hands. We need our hands for everything in activities of daily living. We need our hands to cook, clean, work, and be able to move. My hands tend to be sensitive to fragrances, lotions, soaps, and cleaning supplies. The pain I have felt while doing a simple task like washing dishes has been the worst. Even when I wear gloves during cleaning activities, the water and soap still manage to get to my hands.
What does it feel like there?
When the soap touches my hands and fingers when they are flaring, it feels like a burning sensation. A description I can think about is when you are showering and all of a sudden the extremely hot water comes on. Another way to think about it would be when you've had a cut on your hands, and you aren't able to move them at all.
Pain and eczema isn't easy
Pain is difficult to handle, and on top of that, having eczema does not make it easy on us sufferers. I believe we do not take much credit when dealing with this illness. We are stronger and have been through so much more than we can think. I think we are given these obstacles in life, and we are challenged way more during our healing journey. Eczema warriors are challenged because we are strong enough to overcome pain.
We are WARRIORS. Never forget that. Keep pushing through your healing journey.
On an average day, how would you rate your level of anxiety related to atopic dermatitis?