How to Dry Eczema

allergic rash dermatitis skin of patient
Eczema on a person's skin (Image: tuk69tuk/iStock/Getty Images)

Eczema, also called atopic dermatitis, is a chronic condition that causes inflammation and itching of your skin. Sometimes, there is blistering and oozing, called weeping eczema or wet eczema. Weeping or oozing eczema is more common in infants, but adults can suffer from it as well. Mayo Clinic advises seeing your doctor if your eczema makes it hard for you to function normally, keeps you from sleeping or if you think it might be infected. Some people turn to home remedies to soothe and dry up weeping, oozing eczema. Before trying a home remedy for your weeping eczema, get the OK from your doctor.

Step 1

Pour cold, fresh milk onto a sterile gauze pad until the pad is soaked through. In the Doctor's Book of Home Remedies, John F. Romano, M.D., a dermatologist and clinical assistant professor of medicine at The New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center in New York City, advises a cold milk compress to help alleviate the oozing and itching of weeping eczema.

Step 2

Hold the cold milk compress against the affected area for three minutes, then re-soak it with milk and re-apply for three more minutes. Soak one more time, and re-apply the compress for a final three minutes.

Step 3

Rinse your skin thoroughly with cool water, then pat dry gently with a soft towel and apply a commercial emollient that contains urea or lactic acid. According to "The Doctor's Book of Home Remedies," these work best to control itching. The National Eczema Society cautions that your emollient should be in the form of a cream or lotion, not an ointment; the latter, due to its greasiness, could aggravate weeping eczema. Apply the emollient lotion or cream gently, following the direction of the hair growth, and never rub forcefully; this can promote itching and block hair follicles.

Step 4

Repeat the cold milk compress several times a day for best results.

Step 5

Drink a cup of oolong tea three time a day, if caffeine is not contraindicated for you. The antioxidant polyphenols in the tea may have antiallergic properties. In a clinical study conducted at Shiga University of Medical Science in Japan and published in the January 2001 issue of "Archives of Dermatology," researchers found that 63 percent of patients with atopic dermatitis showed marked to moderate improvement in their condition.

Things You'll Need

  • 8 oz. cold, fresh milk

  • Sterile gauze pads

  • Commercial emollient lotion or cream containing urea or lactic acid

  • Oolong tea--optional

Tip

Wrap a bag of ice in a towel and place it on the affected area to soothe itching and inflammation.

Overwhelming urges to scratch can sometimes be alleviated by pressing firmly on the itchy area with the pads of your fingers.

Warning

Excessive scratching, especially if your nails aren't clean, can increase the risk of bacterial infection, according to "The Doctor's Book of Home Remedies." To prevent this, keep your nails short and scrubbed.

REFERENCES & RESOURCES
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