Eczema Flare Up Update


                  
During December last year, my health became a major issue. I won't go into every single problem because this post is mainly about my skin. After being eczema free for about 8/9 years it came back badly on my neck and arms. These really ugly looking rashes appeared on my face too. Fast forward to this month, I am grateful to say I am healing! I am healing! My skin has made so much progress over these last few months (thank GOD) and I am so thankful. I actually made this post in April but I didn't post it, my skin actually looks a bit better than the pictures below.





The itching has reduced significantly compared to how it used to be. I think it's safe to say the eczema on my arms and neck have pretty much cleared up, it's only my hands and a little bit at the bottom of my leg that needs to go. The skin discolouration is going to take a while to fade, this does not bother me as long as my skin heals. I find it funny when someone tells me I've got a "tan" - I mean it would be great if it was just a "tan" but sadly it's not.

My face used to peel sooo much, it was HORRIBLE. I felt so self-conscious and insecure, it was even worse when I saw my friends and people I knew because my face literally transformed. I was darker and rashy! (l o l). For months I thought I had eczema on my face and it turns out, I didn't!  I received an anti-fungal cream because I was told it looked like seborrheic dermatitis which is a fungal disease of the skin. The cream stopped the peeling but I started to get these really weird welt looking things on my face so I stopped using it. I've been referred to a dermatologist since doctors don't actually know what it is.

I'm not even going to lie to you, a lot of these doctors do not know what their doing. I was prescribed really strong antibiotics because the doctor assumed I had a "staph bacteria infection", I saw another doctor and he said I didn't... the rashes may be an allergic reaction or an infection. I held off seeing a dermatologist a few weeks ago because my family kept telling me they were not going to be helpful, plus my skin improved so much after using this miracle cream (I will speak about this later on the post) that I didn't see the need of going anymore.  Two days ago, the rashes started to appear a little bit on my face and my neck, it's kind of progressing which is scaring the shit out of me so I booked an appointment to see a dermatologist in 2 weeks. Hopefully, they can tell me what the rashes on my face is and why I am getting it.


Diet





The most frustrating thing about having these skin conditions was that most of the food I would usually eat triggered my skin. I have done a ridiculous amount of research on the type of food that heals the gut and won't trigger my eczema or these weird rashes. I avoided artificial/refined sugar (no biscuits, cakes, pastries etc!!!), wheat, deli meats and eggs. I didn't eat out because it wasn't worth the damage to my skin.

I lost sooo much weight over these last few months, honestly I looked quite ill. It was shocking to see how slim my face became since last year and my clothes started to become loose on me. I used to worry and think the weight loss might be a symptom of something serious, yeah I changed my diet but I was still eating. When I consider what I was eating and the stress of figuring out what I could even eat and how I looked, the weight loss kinda makes sense. I look healthier now though (still skinny but I'll put the weight back on gradually). 

During my flare up I followed an anti-inflammatory diet. I ate things like gluten free pasta, tuna, rice, kidney beans, chickpeas, spinach and sweet potatoes. I substituted cows milk with rice milk. I'm slowly adding the food I stopped eating back into my diet but it looks like I just can't have too much of it.


Dealing with the psychological effects


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Everyday I tried to remind myself that I shouldn't dwell on the things I can’t change in this very moment. I tried to accept my circumstances but I failed to do so most of the time. Knowing how much my health was affecting me really made me depressed. I was itching and nauseous, I looked terrible and I had so many food restrictions. Applying make up to a rashy looking face was not pretty. When most people around you are living a carefree life, eating what they want, wearing what they want and not having to worry about their skin, you start to pity yourself. Why do I have to go through this? Why can't I have a normal life? 

Being moany and depressed did not change anything (obviously). Adopting a positive attitude is the only way you can somewhat overcome difficult situations. Being optimistic about the future, convincing myself I am healing and visualising myself being healthy again helped me get through it.  If I couldn't imagine myself getting better I never would.

Stress only makes my skin worse so I remind myself to just breathe and relax. I have a bullet journal to write my thoughts to clear out my head. I listened to my self-love playlist more frequently when my flare up was really bad, completely forgetting how much it helps. In the mornings I would repeat affirmations and say a few in my head during the day when I’m sinking into a shitty mood too.

Skin Care Products

Looking for eczema prone skin products limited my options, most of the time they did not work (Abido is an exception). If you are an eczema sufferer I would suggest you become open to trying different creams, especially if eczema prone skin products are not working for you.

Abido Cream



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M I R A C L E  C R E A M - guys I'm not kidding. This cream is AMAZING!! My mum started using it first and her eczema cleared up within a week. You could see the darkness fading away and the skin looked more hydrated. I started using it after seeing the amazing results and it pretty much cured my skin. I also stopped using it two weeks ago because I found out it has steroid cream in it and I am trying to avoid steroids))): Strangely enough, it does not state it on the product itself but it does online...


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My doctor prescribed me with an emollient called Dermol. I use this as a soap substitute and it keeps my skin smooth. It irritates my skin when I use it as a normal lotion.

The Ordinary Squalene 



I absolutely love using Squalene, it hydrates dry skin and makes my face feel softer and brighter. My face does not dry out as much as it used too so there is no need to moisturise every single hour!

Throughout my skin journey, I had to remind myself time is the biggest healer. In addition to good eating and a positive mental health. I trust in my healing process and if you suffer from eczema, you should trust in yours too. It's important to remind yourself that the flare up will pass. Even though it's taking me a while, I'm hoping I can eventually get to the bottom of the underlying cause of my health issues. With patience and faith, I know I will be free from it all.