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How to Prevent Eczema Flare-ups this Summer

How to Prevent Eczema Flare-ups this Summer

Summer in California means beach days, barbecues, and more daylight hours to spend with family and friends. But the hot, dry season can also bring a less-than-welcome guest — eczema flare-ups. 

The good news is that you don’t have to let eczema stop your summer spirits. With the right strategies, you can enjoy the sunny season with minimal discomfort and fewer flare-ups.

At HK Dermatology in San Juan Capistrano, California, our board-certified dermatologists specialize in helping our patients manage their eczema through personalized treatment plans and practical lifestyle adjustments.

Keep reading as we explore eczema, why it flares up in the summer, and what you can do about it.  

Why does eczema flare in the summer?

Summer poses specific challenges for people with eczema for several reasons. First, the higher temperatures can increase sweating, and sweat can irritate eczema-prone skin.

In addition, the summer means more time spent in chlorinated water, like swimming pools and hot tubs. These chemicals can dry out the skin and lead to flare-ups.

Plus, summer's hotter temperatures and added physical activity often leads to dehydration. This can dry out your skin, making it more vulnerable to eczema flare-ups.

Although it provides much-needed relief from the heat, air conditioning can reduce indoor humidity levels, which may dry the skin.

Understanding these triggers helps you stay on top of them so you can manage your skin condition more effectively during the summer months.

What can I do to stop eczema before it starts?

To help keep your eczema under control this summer, consider these top tips:

Stay hydrated!

Keeping your body hydrated is always essential for good skin health. It makes your skin less prone to dryness and irritation that can trigger eczema flare-ups. During the hot summer months, when you sweat more, it’s easier to become dehydrated, making eczema symptoms worse.

Keep your skin moisturized from the inside out by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Consider carrying a water bottle with you to make sure you drink enough water, and include hydrating foods in your diet, such as fruits and vegetables with high water content.

Moisturize your skin

If you have eczema, moisturizing your skin is crucial — especially in summer when heat and swimming can strip moisture away. 

Apply a high-quality moisturizer at least twice daily, especially after bathing, swimming, or showering.

Select a moisturizer free of fragrances and irritants. These are better for sensitive, eczema-prone skin.

Dress to protect 

Wear loose and breathable clothing made from natural fibers like cotton to minimize skin irritation caused by sweating and friction. Avoid rough, tight, or synthetic fabrics, as they can worsen eczema symptoms by trapping heat and moisture against the skin. 

In the summer, it’s also helpful to wear light colors that reflect rather than absorb the sun’s rays to keep your body cooler. Changing out of wet or sweaty clothes as soon as possible can also help stop eczema flare-ups before they start.

Take care after swimming

After swimming, rinse off chlorine or saltwater immediately, as they can irritate eczema-prone skin when left to air dry. Then, generously reapply your moisturizer to restore hydration and protect your skin. 

Also, consider limiting the duration and frequency of your swims. This will help reduce your exposure to irritants found in pools and ocean water. 

Finally, if swimming is part of your routine, talk to us about using a waterproof barrier cream as an additional protective layer before entering the water.

Identify and avoid triggers

Work with us to identify your summer-specific triggers. These might include certain sunscreens, insect repellents, specific foods, or outdoor allergens that exacerbate your eczema. 

Adopting a proactive approach to identifying and managing these triggers can significantly reduce the severity and frequency of your eczema symptoms during the summer months. 

How can a dermatologist help?

In addition to helping you identify potential eczema triggers, our HK Dermatology skin specialists offer a personalized approach, which may include:

Don’t let eczema hold you back from enjoying your summer! Contact HK Dermatology in San Juan Capistrano, California, to schedule an appointment today.

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