Eczema: Naturally Soothing Home Remedies
It’s no surprise that the estimated 16.5 million U.S. individuals with eczema, or other forms of atopic dermatitis, turn to home remedies and natural treatments to reduce the frequency of flare ups and to soothe the dry, itchy, and swollen pain that results from eczema. Aside from prescription creams, dietary changes, and oral medications, the following natural home remedies have proven effective in lessening the severity of eczema flare ups and inflammation while preventing infection and permanent damage to skin.
Here are the best natural remedies for treating eczema at home:
1. Manuka honey
Already touted for its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial prowess, honey has been used to treat a variety of allergic conditions for centuries, including eczema. Even when this sticky natural sweetener is applied to wounds, burns, dry skin, and stings it’s known for keeping a variety of skin abrasions sanitized while warding off the change of infection. You can dab a bit of manuka honey directly to an affected area to speed wound healing, add moisture, and safeguard against an infection.
2. Aloe vera
Anecdotal evidence suggests that aloe vera gel is generally safe for use in treating eczema and other inflammatory skin conditions. In fact, several smaller studies claim this natural plant gel is antimicrobial and antibacterial in nature, which is especially useful for treating broken, scaly, or oozing and bleeding skin areas that may be prone to infections. Aloe gel is also extremely soothing, which means it promotes fast skin healing and is safe to use on infants with diaper dermatitis.
3. Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has been used for centuries to treat severe skin conditions, including atopic dermatitis. Scientists believe that the acidity in apple cider vinegar naturally restores balance in eczema-prone skin (as many patients have low acidic skin) while preventing the chance of infection. Apple cider vinegar can be made into a hair mask, body wrap, or added to a warm bath. However, this vinegar can be harsh on skin when used alone. Add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to 1 cup of warm water to safely dilute the vinegar first.
4. Tea tree oil
Derived from a tree known as Melaleuca alternifolia, tea tree oil is a reputed “super oil” often applied topically to treat acne, skin dryness, skin wounds, and eczema. Also known for it’s potent antibacterial and anti-inflammatory perks, tea tree oil can be used dillluted (with a carrier oil) to lessen inflamed areas while preventing a nasty infection. This oil can be harsh and potentially even burn sensitive skin so add a bit of almond or olive oil to dilute prior to use.