How to avoid eczema flare ups over Christmas

Eczema is one of the most common types of skincare conditions, so if you’re dealing with it yourself, you’re definitely not alone! It’s estimated that one in five children suffer from eczema, and one in twelve adults. For various reasons, Christmas can be an especially tough time for eczema sufferers – that can be due to a couple of factors, some of which are more well-known than others. So if your eczema is flaring up but you’re not entirely sure why, it might be something to do with…

The chilly weather

This is one of the most influential – and probably the most well known – of eczema triggers. Between October and March, the frequently cold air can make your skin prone to drying out, which normally requires you to be exceptionally diligent with your normal creams, emollients or moisturisers.

But it’s not just the cold air itself that can be a problem – specifically, particularly bad breakouts can be caused by extreme temperature changes, such as when you move from the cold outdoors to the cosy indoors. Try and keep these drastic changes to a minimum where you can – for example by making sure your skin is as covered (and therefore warm) as possible when you’re outdoors, and resisting the urge to turn up the heating too much when indoors. Just be prepared to negotiate a bit with family members or guests!

The Christmas tree

Your Christmas tree can be an especially sneaky culprit when it comes to causing eczema breakouts. This is particularly true if it’s a genuine (as opposed to artificial) tree, as these have a high pollen count which can have a fairly dramatic effect on the existing areas of your skin.

If you’ve got an artificial tree on the other hand, make sure that it’s not still covered in dust from being in storage. If so, it’s sensible (albeit tedious) to take it down temporarily, give it a good hose down outside, and shake off any loose parts before putting it up again. OK, so this might not seem like the most cheerful and festive task at this stage in the Christmas season, but a few hours of a missing tree is better than days of discomfort, especially if you’re the one hosting this year!

On a similar note, scented candles, log fires and potpourri are all common (but underestimated) culprits for causing or worsening eczema flare ups.

Christmas Opening Times

Allergens in festive foods

Turkey, chocolate and Christmas pudding are all major items on the festive menu, but since they’re not commonly found on dinner tables throughout the rest of the year, it’s easy for some people to forget that they can be a factor in causing eczema, especially in young children.

If you think you’ve experienced Christmas-dinner-related eczema in the past but you’re not entirely sure what part of the meal caused it, you’ll be glad to hear that there are ways you can play it safe this year – you can go for festive gluten-free, meat free or dairy free alternatives to most of the special Christmas foodstuffs. And while we’re on the topic, another thing to watch out for involves food-based gifts from friends or family. Tasty they may be, but they may or may not come with an allergy list, so treat them with (polite) caution!

Hopefully these tips are of use in helping you to track down the causes for any mystery eczema attacks over this year’s festive season. And if you’ve got any specific questions, you can always ask one of our friendly experts.

At AP skincare, we’re dedicated to helping your skin stay happy and healthy. As well as an array of core treatments, we’ve also got a range of skincare products to help make sure your skin keeps its wow factor, even in the adverse weather! What’s more, each of our skincare experts has a wealth of knowledge gained from years of practical experience, so we’re able to give you tailored advice that’s unique to your needs and personal circumstances. Call into our Blackburn treatment centre today on 01254 297 000, or book an appointment to visit us in person – we’re always here to help!