Yes, just having eczema itself can stress you out. This is what we call, stress induced eczema.
It’s on your mind 24/7.
Sometimes you space out mid-conversation and think about your eczema.
The minute someone’s eyes shift to your eczema, you start to wonder what they think about it? What do they think about you? Are they going to comment on it? Are they going to give me unsolicited advice or do they really understand eczema? Maybe they have eczema and we can relate to one another?
After that happens, you then stress about eczema a little bit more because someone noticed it. Ah, stress induced eczema again.
You then think to yourself, “I thought my eczema looked fine today…Is it more red than usual? Is my skin dry and visible with flakes?! I think it’s time to look in the mirror and re-apply some moisturizer so no one notices my eczema.”
There are times when I stressed about not having any moisturizer around me so I could “hide/fix” visible eczema/dry skin. Another point for stress induced eczema.
Because of being in this situation multiple times, I started stressing about always having some sort of moisturizer before I left the house so I wouldn’t stress in case my skin got dry in the middle of the day.
But what happened when I forgot to pack moisturizer?!
I stressed out even more.
Do I still stress about my eczema today?
But it’s a lot less than before.
Partly because my eczema has gotten better through my diet. I’ve switched over to the vegan diet after my progress stalled.
But I stress less about it because I can’t control 100% of my eczema. I stress about what I can control which is diet, skin maintenance and just being mindful and present (which takes a lot of practice).
Now when someone notices my eczema or asks about it, I’m less defensive, I don’t get offended or upset.
I use this opportunity to explain what eczema is and what I’m doing to improve it.
Most of the time, this conversation becomes a segway into healthy living.
Sometimes, the person has had eczema before or knows someone who has eczema.
Another reason I stress less now is that I’ve started to not care what other people think of my skin. This is extremely hard but I’m trying each and every day.
I just didn’t flip the switch on not caring, this mindset is still a work in progress after living so many years of wondering what people think of my skin.
Over time, as you get better and stop caring about what other people think about your skin, your eczema stress will decrease as well. This is how we can break the cycle of stress induced eczema.
Until then, focus on what you can control.
Doing things that keep you present, focusing on your diet, and having a skincare routine.
So how do I deal with stress induced eczema?
The good thing is, that you are now aware that stress plays a role in your eczema. If you are interested, take a look at this research paper on the effects stress has on eczema.
The next step is to come up with a list that reduces your stress in the moment. Here is my list to help you get started:
- Going for a walk
- Making a cup of tea
- Lighting an incense stick
- Watching my favorite show
- Playing a game on my phone
- Getting fresh air by opening the window
Looking for some guidance?
I understand what you are going through on a physical, mental, and emotional level.
I’ve walked your painful journey and healed myself. I want to help you too.
Sometimes, all you need is a little bit of guidance, coaching, and support.
If this resonates with you on some level, book a complimentary 30 min call with me on how I can help you!
Everything Eczema was created by Kishok (Certified Nutritional Practitioner, 2023) to help the millions of people around the world who are suffering from atopic dermatitis (eczema) and topical steroid withdrawal (TSW). Our goal is to educate and empower you on how to manage your eczema so you can live your greatest life!Learn more