The Stress of Moving and Its Effect on My Hand Dermatitis
Nothing’s more stressful in life than moving and changing houses! I experienced the effect of this huge stressor in 2014 when I was accepted into a makeup artistry academy in Southern California. To complete the program, I had to move 6 hours south and live there for 6 months. I was really stressed out about uprooting myself and living in a new city for such a long time for the first time and one of the freakiest things happened on the drive down from San Francisco to Costa Mesa.
What is causing this flare?!
As me and my boyfriend at the time reached the halfway mark, I was feeling super stressed out and found that the skin between my fingers was completely splitting open on its own. It was not even itchy and I had not even touched the area. But my stress being the only factor that had changed at the same time this was happening, it was only obvious to me that this was a stress-induced reaction. It really hurt and felt like a knife stuck between my fingers or like a really big paper cut between them and when I open my hands I could actually see through to the deeper layers of my skin. I was not sure exactly how this happened or how long it would last, but I just tried to keep area intact by putting oil-based balms on top to prevent infection. I also put band-aids on top to really secure the area. And, eventually, these openings closed up on their own as I became much more settled and comfortable in my new location and started making friends. No scars, hyperpigmentation or mark left behind.
Impact of stress
I share this story because it just goes to show the importance of feeling settled in life whether it is in your residence or in your body and the impact of that showing up in symptoms like this severe one. I have not had this happened to me since then, at least not to that degree. But, since I have recently started a two-year travel journey for the past 6 months, I have noticed times where it seemed like it was going to happen again and immediately made sure that I covered the area and made myself feel settled again. Some other ways I help myself feel at home overseas are: remembering how much I've been dreaming of this journey for years, making friends through karaoke (thank God for music!) or the people I Airbnb with, and thinking about my family.
To be aware of surprise skin symptoms and how they play out require careful observation. Remaining in touch with the circumstances that surround their expression can be helpful in alleviating these symptoms and restoring the health and balance of your skin. Would love to hear any suggestions that you have for dealing with moving and changing residence and the impact it has on your eczema rashes. Please leave your comments below!
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