mhoNaturopathy, Skin CareLeave a Comment

If you don’t have eczema yourself, chance are you know someone who does.  Eczema has a wide range of severity, for some it is mild and unsightly and for others it causes terrible itching, weeping, pain, and suffering.

Eczema, or atopic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition.  Typically we see a family history of atopy (allergy) and is very common.  We see approximately 2.4% of the population suffer from this.  According to the Merck manual, “the cause is unknown.”  We do know that white blood cells from patients who have this condition have decreased levels of cAMP (cyclic adenosine monophosphate) phosphodiesterase which causes an increased histamine release and decreased bacteriocidal activity.

Like all diseases, it is a very personal experience.  Some people have cracking, bleeding, weeping, and itching is a constant feature.  The skin can become dry, thick, and hypersensitive.

Treating eczema requires treating the person in many aspects.  Decreasing inflammation before it starts is a key way to avoid and prevent the condition from flaring and getting worse.  Prostaglandin 1 or PGE1 and PGE3 are beneficial for eczema.  This starts with nutrition.  Taking in borage oil, evening primrose oil, and black currant oils
are all beneficial for eczema.  The body makes PGE1 from these or from linoleic acid which is stored and made in the body.  However, some things we consume can prevent linoleic acid from getting modulated into GLA and then into PGE1.  These substances are quite common in many people’s daily lives; age, alcohol consumption, trans-fatty acids (things that are hydrogenated on the labels), diabetes mellitus, coffee, and insulin.

Taking flax oil and ground flax seeds, hemp, and pumpkin seeds are all precursors to form PGE3 – which is anti-inflammatory.  PGE2, which is pro-inflammatory is directly derived from dairy products and meats.

Getting tested for food sensitivities is also highly important.  Many people find they have food sensitivities that are hidden to them.  Once you eliminate that food, you find great relief.

Herbs and homeopathy are greatly helpful too.  Homeopathy is a very exact science and sometimes it takes a little work to find the exact match to treat the eczema, but homeopathy is highly effective in treating this condition.

What many do not understand about homeopathy is that there are hundreds of remedies that potentially treat eczema.  Your practitioner has to take the case carefully in order to determine the uniqueness of your experience of eczema.  Once the remedy is given, you find enormous relief.

Some common remedies for eczema are calcarea carbonica, apis, arsenicum, psorinum, rhus tox, and tuberculinum.  I have patients who have relief from the itching literally within moments of taking the remedy.  


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