The past few years have been incredibly stressful for people around the world as we continue to cope with the effects of the global coronavirus pandemic and the COVID-19 infections that spread as a result.
Indeed, Americans are feeling a great deal of stress, as noted by the American Psychological Association’s most recent “Stress in America” poll, conducted in February 2022 through interviews with 3,012 adults in the U.S. Uncertainty about the world is a factor of stress for 81% of respondents, and a similar amount of people were worried about supply chain problems.
A full 87% of Americans are experiencing stress because of inflation causing increased prices of everyday purchases such as food, gasoline, and utilities. About 63% of adults indicate their life has been changed forever due to the pandemic of COVID-19, with many experiencing grief.
Hopefully, seeing these statistics will not cause you further distress but will instead serve to underscore how widespread stress has become, to help motivate you to learn how to better manage your own stress levels.
For individuals who happen to suffer from eczema, it’s crucial to pay attention to how you are feeling and to have methods to help you cope with stress. That’s because there is a connection between stress and painful outbreaks of eczema.
Read on for details on how stress contributes to eczema, along with some tips to help you better manage stressful situations.
The Relationship Between Stress and Eczema
Eczema, often referred to as atopic dermatitis by medical professionals, is a condition that often is exacerbated by stress. Whether you have eczema yourself or are concerned about eczema symptoms in a loved one, you should know that eczema is characterized by itchy, red rashes that can become more painful when you scratch at them.
One issue to keep in mind is that people aren’t always aware that they are stressed, according to Healthline. That’s why it’s useful to stay aware of potential sources of stress.
Healthline noted that when your body is feeling stress, it produces a hormone called cortisol. Large amounts of cortisol are implicated in eczema flare-ups.
And stress can also make episodes of eczema worse, often causing a vicious circle where the more stressed you are, the more symptoms you feel, and the more irritated your skin becomes.
Tips to Manage Stress and Reduce Eczema Discomfort
According to the National Eczema Association, “Anxiety and stress are common triggers that cause eczema to flare up, which then creates more anxiety and stress, which then leads to more eczema flare-ups.” What’s needed are some proven methods to bring down stress and therefore reduce the chances of eczema flare-ups occurring so often.
- Get plenty of sleep. As pointed out by Eczemaless, getting sound sleep every night is essential for reducing stress, and therefore getting control over eczema flare-ups.
- Practice meditation. Find a quiet place where you won’t be interrupted, and make an effort to meditate at least once each day. You can do this sitting or lying down. People will do deep breathing during meditation to help relax and develop a calmer mind.
- To see that you’re not alone, consider joining an eczema support group in your community. You can exchange stories about how you’ve managed to cope with stress as well as with eczema symptoms. Being part of a group of like-minded people going through the same thing can do wonders to bring down your stress levels. Eczema Honey has our own support group on Facebook where you can feel safe in sharing advice, tips, secrets, and success stories!
- Give yourself a break! When feeling burdened by too much pressure at school, work or with unending chores at home, remember to take some “me time” once in a while. Go for a walk, hang out with a friend, watch a fun movie or engage in other leisure activity.
Pamper Yourself With Soothing Products Designed to Bring Relief for Eczema
It’s worth remembering that just noticing that you are stressed and then starting to feel eczema symptoms growing more pronounced can make you feel even more stressed out! Give yourself a break and consider pampering yourself with skin care products designed for individuals with eczema. Using Eczema Honey’s Original Skin-Soothing Cream is a great way to get started.