Various persistent skin conditions fall under eczema. The general symptoms are dryness and skin rashes and it is characterized by redness, swelling, itching, flaking, blistering and cracking of skin. It is mostly chronic and recurs. It is also prevalent among families with asthma history.
Conventional Medical Treatment
Regular medical advice would be to go for a corticosteroid treatment. However prolonged use of topical corticosteroids has lot of side effects. It might lead to obesity and the other major side effect is the skin becoming thin and fragile. One of major reason for aggravation of eczema is lack of skin oils, and for this people advice the use of fat pills (pills made out of saturated fatty acids). This too has lot of side effects and might result in obesity.
It is very important to understand that all steroidal sprays, while they give rapid relief from the symptoms, they don’t cure the disease. The addictive component becomes important after prolonged use. One can come across lot of information shared by patients about the addiction of steroidal sprays. Eczema is completely curable through Ayurveda coupled by some lifestyle changes.
Alternative Medicine for Eczema:
Ayurveda has an extensive explanation for this condition and lifestyle and diet changes along with natural medicines for this condition. Ayurveda considers cleaning of the colon as the first step in curing eczema; it associates eczema with poor digestive ability and asthma. In Ayurveda it is said that unless you remove the cause (the doshas), you cannot get rid of both asthma and eczema. If you suppress the symptoms of asthma you will get eczema and the vice versa.
1) Lifestyle Changes: Exposure of our skin to sunlight is considered important. This has scientific basis too, as exposure of our skin to sunlight produces vitamin D3 in our skin and this vitamin plays a vital role in curing Eczema. The second important thing is to drink 2-4 glasses of warm water in the morning, to flush out the colon. Do simple yoga asanas like forward bend (Padahastasana). Never apply regular soaps over the affected area, as it removes any skin oil and will worsen the condition.
2) Diet Changes: It is important to avoid certain oils (especially that of peanuts and sesame) and to use ghee instead. One should avoid sour things like tamarind and tomatoes (however lime, indian gooseberries and pome don’t fall under this category). Eat good amount of vegetables and fruits and eat only after being hungry and eat a little less.
3) Medicines: The best medicine advised for eczema is application of a mix of neem oil and castor oil (in the ratio 2:1) over the affected skin. This is a very powerful medicine and can cure eczema very fast. Ayurvedic physicians often suggest taking one teaspoonful of Panchanimbadi choorna after each meal.
Other home remedies to cure eczema:
1) Never leave your skin to get excessively hot or cold. Eczema is known to occur more among people living in dry and cold countries.
2) It is better to keep the skin covered. Use gloves and socks all the time.
3) Coconut Oil may be applied over the affected area. Flax seed oil can also be used as an alternative.
4) Sandalwood should be ground in to a paste and mixed with camphor oil. This mixture should then be immediately applied over the affected area. (Don’t store this mixture).
5) Boil peepal bark (holy fig) and neem bark together and let the steam penetrate the affected region, be careful to use the steam mildly.
6) Make a paste using turmeric powder and sesame oil and apply it over the affected area.
7) Mix karanja seeds with lemon juice and apply it over the affected skin.
Stress is also associated with eczema, so it is important to live a stress free life. You can practice yoga or meditation to avoid stress and avoid junk foods and food at odd time. Have an undisturbed sleep of 8 hours and wake up early. Keep your colon clean by consuming vegetables and high fiber food. Avoid contact of chemicals and metals (especially in powder form) over the skin. Nickel is a known to induce eczema.
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