Common Eczema Triggers

Common Eczema Triggers

Eczema also referred to as dermatitis, is essentially inflammation of the skin. In this article, we will look at what is likely to cause a flare-up and how to prevent it. We will also look at what you can use on your skin during a flare-up to reduce discomfort.

Often, you will notice that your symptoms are worse at times, which is called a flare-up. A flare-up is generally caused by certain triggers, which means that finding what triggers your eczema and preventing it, may dramatically reduce flare-ups and symptoms.


Stress is an emotion that we all have to deal with, whether it comes from your job, relationship, family life or one of the many other responsibilities that make up adult life.

The problem is, stress is known to manifest itself physically, it could be through a migraine, palpitations, hives, eczema or whatever else. There is even a branch of psychology called psychodermatology, which examines the relationship between the mind and the skin.

There have been many studies which have shown that stress can have a significant impact on eczema flare-ups and, you have probably noticed that during a stressful situation, your eczema symptoms are worse; this is most likely due to the increase of inflammation in the body as a reaction to stress.

So, while stress does not cause eczema, it may be what is triggering it. Therefore, by reducing stress, you should be able to reduce symptoms; it should make you feel better overall. There are many different ways to reduce emotional stress and anxiety; a natural approach is always better as you want a long-term solution. Click here to find out ways to naturally reduce stress and anxiety.

Eczema and Dairy

Common Eczema Triggers

There are many alternatives to milk products

Dairy is a pretty common eczema trigger. While there is not a great amount of scientific evidence that proves there is a link between diet and eczema flare-ups, many eczema sufferers have found a major improvement in their symptoms with small diet changes suggesting that there is a link between the two.

There have been many instances where people have claimed that eating certain foods and cutting others out of their diet has cured them of whatever disease they are suffering from. Now, I won’t go as far as to say changing your diet will cure your eczema, but knowing what foods are triggers and, knowing what foods contain the vitamins and nutrients that will reduce symptoms, will hopefully make a difference.

The first food product to think about cutting out of your diet is dairy products – milk, butter, cheese and yogurt. Dairy intolerance is the number one food-related trigger of a flare-up and, with nearly a total 40 percent of eczema suffers having an allergy to dairy products and cow’s milk, it is not surprising.

As dairy products are where most of us get our calcium from, it is essential that you still get your daily requirement by eating other calcium-rich food like soybeans, fortified cereals and orange juice, sardines and dark leafy greens – spinach, turnips, and kale.

Food Additives

The modern diet consists of a lot of processed and pre-packaged food and, while such food may be super convenient, they are packed full of additives which help to preserve, stabilize and add color; they even contain the chemical monosodium glutamate (MSG) a flavor enhancer is used in a lot of soups, canned veg, processed meat and Chinese food.

Although food additives are regulated and approved, they are considered to be very bad for our health and, for eczema suffers, the additives contained in processed and pre-packaged food is known to trigger and exacerbate symptom and are therefore best avoided.

Skin Irritants

Common Eczema Triggers

Natural soaps are best

If you have eczema, then you know how sensitive your skin can be. Even everyday tasks like showering can trigger a flare-up. Avoiding things that are likely to cause irritation will hopefully help you to manage your symptoms and prevent them from occurring.


Eczema sufferers will often find that extremes in temperature will trigger a flare-up.


While bathing may feel soothing, that feeling will be short-lived. When you bathe, your skin is stripped of moisture which will exacerbate symptoms.

To manage this, you should use warm water instead of hot water when taking a bath or shower.

Additionally, when you dry yourself with a towel (make sure it is clean) do not rub too hard, just gently dab to prevent irritation. You will also want to moisturize when you get out of the shower; this works great with oil, especially when the skin is damp as it will retain maximum moisture.


If you have eczema, then you have to be really conscious of the products that you use on your skin as not only can they cause irritation, but they can actually strip the natural oils from your skin.

Soap, especially perfumed soap, often contains numerous chemicals, like lauryl sulfate, that may be harmful to your skin. The best thing to use for a substitute for soap when you are bathing is a thick emollient. This will both reduce the risk of irritation and retain moisture.


That favorite jumper of yours may be making you itch. Certain fabrics, like wool, are more likely to scratch your skin and cause irritation and is probably best avoided. Instead, try to wear clothes that are made out of smooth-textured fabric like silk or cotton.

Also, you should opt for looser clothing as it won’t rub on your skin as much, this is especially true for pajamas, which you want to be loose as getting too hot at night may also trigger a flare-up. Surprisingly, what you wash your clothes in may also be a trigger.

If you suspect that this may be the case, opt for a natural product or even try another brand.