What is eczema?

Eczema…. I can tell you all about it unfortunately! Eczema is a collective term for skin diseases that often have the same type of rash. It is a chronic skin condition, which can vary in severity. Active eczema is characterised by redness, swelling, scaling, bumps or blisters; in other words, an inflammatory reaction.

Eczema actually consists of all the inflammations in the upper skin layers. The upper skin layer is extremely sensitive to bacteria, fungi and infections when the skin barrier is not in place. Everyone has that skin barrier by nature, but people with eczema have skin that is out of balance. This skin barrier cannot repair itself sufficiently and cannot protect the skin, which results in eczematic complaints. These can be bumps, flakes, redness, blisters, and so on. 

In this blog I would like to explain to you more about the types of eczema, the causes and the factors that influence eczema and treatments against eczema. I would also like to tell you more about my own experiences with collagen and how our own collagen supplement reduces my eczema outbreaks.

types of eczema

Three to five per cent of adults have eczema, and even 10-20 per cent of children! Children who suffer from eczema during childhood often suffer from it later in life.

Chronic eczema mainly involves flaking and dry, sometimes thickened, skin and fissures. In almost all cases, the patient suffers from itching. There are various causes for eczema, which can be found in the name of the type of eczema. The most common eczemas are:

  • Constitutional or atopic eczema: an eczema that is potentially present.

  • Seborrheic eczema: a form in which a yeast probably plays a role.

  • Allergic contact eczema: based on allergy to a certain substance such as nickel.

  • Irritating contact eczema: caused by chronic, frequent contact with (weakly) irritating substances such as water and soap.

  • A mixture of these three eczemas.

Eczema, dewworm, atopic, dermatitis. Whatever you want to call it, it is extremely annoying, and then I express myself softly. People sometimes say: itching is worse than pain? 

eczeem huid van binnen
Eczema skin compared to normal skin

Causes of eczema

There is no single clear cause for the development of eczema; hereditary predisposition is the most important, but internal and external factors also play a role.

Factors affecting the skin and eczema:

  • Climate factors, such as dry air
  • Disease, stress and emotional tension
  • Skin bacteria
  • Water, soap and foaming products
  • Sweating
  • Wool
  • Dishwashing and cleaning products

Triggers can also be found in food. Histamine is the substance to which you can react allergically. Foods that contain histamine:

  • Shellfish and molluscs
  • Alcohol, especially red wine
  • Spinach, pumpkin, eggplant and olives
  • fermented food such as sauerkraut or tempeh
  • Old cheese, Parmesan cheese, blue cheeses such as roquefort
  • Pork, lamb and wild meat
  • Giste extract (or monosodium glutamate, E621) 
  • Strawberries, citrus fruit, dried fruit
  • Eggs (only the egg white)
  • Chocolate
  • Tomatoes
  • Smoked and pickled food
  • Herbs such as cinnamon, chilli and thyme

Definitely something to think about: Histamine builds up in your body, the so-called threshold value. So make sure that when you react to these nutrients, you don’t eat them indefinitely but take breaks for a few days. This way you can try to prevent an outbreak. 

My own experience

I don’t remember ever being itchy or having no marks on my body. My first memories come from when I was about six years old. With us in Urk we go to church on Sundays, followed by family visits. Super fun! 

Grandpa, grandma, all uncles, aunts, cousins together. I have warm memories of this time. We first visited one grandparents for coffee and cake. This grandmother had cats and a dog. People with allergies who read this will feel it: In my case, the already present eczema was triggered even more by the animals, or my constitutional eczema added other allergies. (Allergies to animals, hay fever, asthma, food allergy) I was able to sit for exactly 15 minutes and then the misery started. Sneezing, snot everywhere, red itchy eyes, general misery, so to speak. Then after just under an hour this snot sample was put in the car, on its way to the other grandmother. Where I had to lie on the couch with wet flannels on my face for half an hour to get some sight, smell and taste again krijgen😊 (Nobody thought of letting me in the house haha, although, of course, I was too young for that).

It took my skin a few days to recover from this attack; and then it was Sunday again and it started again from scratch!

What is eczema?

Eczema treatments

What can be done about eczema? That really is a very good question! With eczema, the skin barrier is disturbed and this makes the skin less able to retain moisture, dries out more quickly and therefore less well protected against harmful substances from outside. The skin becomes dry and flaky. In this way, all factors continue to reinforce each other and therefore often worsen. Our Skin for Skin collagen supplement is a real addition to your moisture balance. Your TEWL (Trans Epidermal Water Loss) or the water flow that supports and controls your body processes increases! We have already been able to measure this with many users, by means of our skin scan!

Do you have eczema complaints? Then it is best to contact a dermatologist via your GP. They can take allergy tests, so that you know which triggers you really need to avoid. They can also prescribe you certain ointments. I always have hormone ointments at home. Of course you don’t want to use it because it also has side effects such as thinning skin, but sometimes you really have no choice.

Since I use Skin for Skin I have almost no outbreaks, but unfortunately I am not completely eczema free. When I have an attack I love to use my hormone ointment to get it under control again as soon as possible. I also often use our “Get me glowing” mask to give my skin some extra attention. (Read here what the ingredients can do for your skin.) I also use our teas to get extra herbs and vitamins from the inside in an easy and tasty way!

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What is eczema?