Treating Eczema 360°

The physician treats, but nature heals.

— Hippocrates

Tribe was created with the philosophy to make a difference as we believe that true beauty lies in living with a positive, open attitude, respecting both the precious blessings of the natural world and oneself as a part of nature. Enabling everyone living in the world of today to remain true to themselves while instilling in them a sense of comfort. In their minds, in their bodies and in their skin.

Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a chronic-relapsing inflammatory skin condition. It is a cutaneous immune defect that disrupts the skin barrier, thereby increasing an individual’s susceptibility to infection with bacteria, fungi and viruses. However, people with eczema-prone, sensitive, flaky or damaged skin may not even realize that their diet, skin care products and lifestyle habits may be the actual cause of their skin problems.

The skin is the largest organ in the human body. The products we rub on our skin directly enter the blood stream, which is why both avoiding irritating products and nourishing the skin directly with the right products are important to skin health. The skin, however, is not a stand-alone organ; the digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems also contribute to overall skin health.

While Chinese, Ayurvedic, and Naturopathic healing modalities acknowledge the close link between skin health and imbalances in these other bodily systems, the majority of allopathic (Western medicine) dermatologists ignore this important connection when trying to clear a patient’s eczema with steroids that only offer temporary relief via immune system suppression (which leads to long-term skin thinning, stretching, bruising and drug dependency).

Clearing eczema without steroids is a multi-faceted process. It’s not enough to discover the next new eczema product on the market to apply topically to your sensitive skin or to avoid a few of the foods proven to be eczema triggers. A more comprehensive approach is in order that considers all aspects of how the skin organ works to moisturise itself and how the skin is affected by the digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems that support it.

One of the main things that we have to remember about eczema is that it is not just a “skin condition”, therefore, treating it from the outside will not result in a cure. The condition of your skin is a reflection of what is happening inside your body. If your main organs of elimination (liver, lungs, colon, kidneys, and the skin (through perspiration)) are not working optimally, then toxins will be forced to come out through the secondary sources of elimination – the skin (through rashes, acne, eczema, etc.) or the mucous membranes (in the form of allergic rhinitis or congestion). Therefore, any skin condition must always be treated from the inside out.

The goal is to clear eczema and effectively care for sensitive skin through four phases that reduce eczema-related inflammation on the outside of the body by harmonizing the digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems inside the body and then finally nourish the skin by using mild cleansers and natural skin care products that respect the hydrolipidic film, pH, and bacterial flora of the skin*

AVOID IRRITANTS

It is critical to learn about the substances in our everyday lives that can provoke skin reactions. These triggers can be conventional skin care products, detergents, fabrics, plants, and foods that cause an allergic reaction when put in direct contact with the skin. Over-the-counter moisturisers and their irritating synthetic ingredients are one of the biggest sources of irritation for those with eczema and sensitive skin issues.

SOOTHE THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM

Thanks to the circulatory system flowing through our skin, our diet and the amount of water we drink is directly tied to our skin’s health. The digestive system, and therefore the circulatory system, can be either irritated or soothed based on the intake of specific foods. Detoxifying our digestive system and moisturising our skin from the inside via appropriate nutrition positively supports skin health.

CALM THE NERVOUS SYSTEM

Many ancient and modern healing modalities emphasise the connection between physical relaxation and healthy skin. Activities such as specific yoga postures, breathing techniques, and adequate sleep relax the nerves that run through the skin and simultaneously engage the parasympathetic nervous system that calms us, helping to clear the skin.

NOURISH AND PROTECT SKIN

Naturally supporting the skin from the outside with plant- and animal-based oils containing fatty acids (both essential and unsaturated) can help make skin that is prone to irritation smooth, soft, and beautiful naturally. Using particular ingredients and natural skin care products will enhance our skin’s natural ability to protect us from the elements.

Finally, eczema is one of those conditions that can be very frustrating for those who have it as aggravations or flare ups can often occur during the course of treatment. However, by treating the cause and supporting the body, the eczema can be cured, as the body discovers its inherent ability to heal.

*This approach is fully described by Michael Huffman in  Zen Skin Care: Clearing Eczema and Caring for Sensitive Skin – Naturally!