Eczema and Exercise
Sensitive and dry skin is caused by cracks in the protective oily barrier that lies on the surface of the skin. The causes for the 'cracks' are various: hereditary factors, allergies, age or excessive sun-bathing.
This leads to the weakening of the skin structures, in turn making it more vulnerable to other irritants like cold temperature, artificial clothing, and chemical ingredients contained in most hair care products and skin creams.
More over, skin diseases such as dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea and eczema can occur more easily when a person's skin structure is weakened.
Eczema is characterized by itchy, dry, scaly and red areas on the skin. Ten to twenty percent of the world has some form of eczema. There are people, especially children, who report extreme pain from eczema and an overwhelming desire to scratch their affected skin. Skin becomes scaly and in the worst cases eczema can cause pus-filled pustules, which can open up and ooze. Permanent damage can be the result.
Eczema and Sports
Sweating seems to trigger eczema in some people. In high humidity climates the effects are even worse.
A natural reaction, sweating works to lower a person's body heat. Eczema is triggered by sweat because of the salt which dehydrates the skin.
Here is a list of other factors in sports that can irritate the skin:
- Team sports t-shirts: synthetic materials make the skin sweat more
- Hot showers after doing exercise: hot water dries the skin out
- Using chemical based shampoo and soap: this dries the skin
- Swimming pools full of chlorine: irritates the skin
- Bacteria and other microorganisms found in the locker rooms: cause infection of the already damaged skin
- Poor skin care: showering too much, not showering enough, and rubbing the skin too violently with a towel, all damage the skin
1. Lower the number of times you work out, and the intensity of each session.
2. Pilates and Yoga are two activities which do not cause so much sweating, incorporate this into your exercise routines.
3. Exercise in well ventilated areas with low humidity.
4. Apply only natural skin care products to your skin. All natural skin care products help to stop further irritation.
Short of giving up sports completely, the best thing to do is to use only natural products.
The key to natural skin care is all natural yet potent ingredients. For dry skin relief choose products with naturally moisturizing elements such as rose hip oil. Known in South America for decades as 'rosa mosqueta', rose hip oil has been used to moisturize the driest skin. An excellent choice for an eczema treatment would include rose hip oil and a regenerative substance to stimulate new cell growth in damaged skin. Just because a product is all natural does not mean it works, choose carefully.
Published May 25th, 2009