Massage the face, starting from the centre, moving slowly to the outside. Gently use a finger-tapping motion around the eyes. Use long up-and-down movements on the legs. Avoid fast, rubbing motions with pressure, as this will aggravate the skin irritation.
SCRATCHING – A VICIOUS CYCLE!
When the skin is dry and inflamed, the itching starts and quickly becomes uncontrollable scratching, leading to infection and more inflammation. And so the cycle continues. If any one of these factors can be removed, the cycle will be broken.
Causes of itching include inflammation, dry skin, heat, perspiration, stress, a scratching habit and boredom. Find a solution to boredom. Avoid saying things like, ‘Stop scratching.’ Rather say, ‘Can I help you?’ or ‘Let me help you.’ People often don’t realise they are scratching, and telling them to stop scratching often makes them want to scratch even more.
Probiotic supplements have shown some promising results in pregnant mothers of at-risk infants. Those who took a mixture of probiotics, beginning two to four weeks before delivery and continuing while breast-feeding, saw significantly less eczema than would be expected in their infants.1 Friendly probiotic bacteria seem to crowd out harmful bacteria that produce inflammation and toxins, making the gut more permeable to harmful allergens. It is still too early to conclude that probiotics can prevent and treat eczema, but the science is promising. No harm in trying!
1. Wickens K, et al. A differential effect of 2 probiotics in the prevention of eczema and atopy: A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2008;122:788-794.