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Eczema, please help!!

(17 Posts)
asblackasyoursoul Fri 18-Sep-15 16:59:43

Hi, I'm a 16 year old girl and I thought maybe you guys would be able to help me!
I've suffered from chronic eczema all over my body since I was born. I'm not sure on the exact 'type' but it doesn't bleed/scab etc, my skin is just extremely dry and flaky. I hate having showers because afterwards my skin feels like sandpaper, no joke.
I used Diprobase for years until I was about 13, and now I'm on Epaderm.

It's extremely annoying because every morning I have to moisturise my entire body and face before getting dressed, it's quite time consuming.
I went back to the doctors a few months ago and told them I wanted another cream because my current one isn't doing me justice.
Epaderm lasts me about 6 hours before it stops working and my face and body start flaking, it's horrible. I really need something better.
So the doctor prescribed me Aveeno. Totally useless, a lot of people rave about it but it was worse than Epaderm (for me personally!)

I've also tried all those 'in shower moisturizers' like Nivea etc, they don't do anything either.
The ONLY cream I have used that did wonders for my skin was Neutrogena. Unfortunately they only make it in wee bottles, they're not big enough to last me for daily use. Plus they're quite expensive (for me, anyway)

Sorry for the rant, I'm just sick and tired of this and wondered if any of you could help! Thankyou.

Misnomer Fri 18-Sep-15 17:08:27

You need to go back to your GP and ask for a referral to a dermatologist. Take the NICE guidelines with you if necessary and take your mum or someone else who can stick up for you. GPs, whilst sometimes brilliant, are general practitioners, meaning that they have lots of bits of knowledge about a lot of things rather than having a great depth of knowledge about specific conditions. You've put up with your eczema for a long time and the GP hasn't been able to help to it's time to speak to a specialist. My daughter has eczema and we did have to battle to get the referral but when we did it made all the different. The nurse practitioner who we see is brilliant (and actually co wrote the NICE guidelines). She worked with us to find a combination of creams that worked for my daughter and she also referred us to an allergy specialist and a dietician as it was diet related in this case.

www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ta81/resources/primary-care-dermatology-society2

Robertaquimby Fri 18-Sep-15 17:16:17

Definitely ask for a referral. Made a big difference to me.

SeagullsAreLikeThat Fri 18-Sep-15 18:51:38

Also, try switching to body washes, shampoos and conditioners that don't contain chemicals, especially parabens and SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate). I have had eczema all my life along with allergies to various things but due to a serious reaction to hair dye have now had to eliminate all chemicals from products I use. The difference to my skin is amazing. Mine used to flake, bleed, blister and feel so sore due to dryness but now as long as I moisturise when I've had a shower, I have no problems with it. Everything I use is natural and unscented as perfume in products is often an irritant - very boring but my skin is the best it has been for years.

asblackasyoursoul Fri 18-Sep-15 19:00:27

I honestly don't think it's related to anything I eat or use on my body, no matter what I do it's still there. I've never used perfumed shower stuff, I always use Simple. I know that dairy is not exactly helpful either, but I've been off dairy for months before and it still made no difference.

Is there any creams anyone could recommend though? Like I said, Neutrogena worked amazingly but it's so small and I can't afford to be buying it all the time sad

I live in the middle of nowhere and it takes about 3 weeks to get a doctors appointment. So I may have to google for dermatologists. Do they cost? Because if they do then I'm not going to be able to do that angry

Misnomer Fri 18-Sep-15 19:08:26

Make an appointment for three weeks time then. You've put up with this since early childhood. It can't be that the three week wait is a deal breaker?

If your skin is constantly bad then it may be that the flare ups are not being brought under control and you need something different to just using emollients.

Honestly, you need a dermatologist. It will be something to do with something and the dermatologist will work with you to figure out what that something is and put a treatment plan together based on that.

Have a look here as well:

www.eczema.org

asblackasyoursoul Fri 18-Sep-15 19:11:32

My main concern is that I'll go there, ask for the referral and they'll refuse it. Also, my skin doesn't LOOK bad during my day to day life. I do get redness on my face and I always break out in a rash around my mouth when stressed especially. I've also had flare ups quite often, and had to use antihistestamines, steroid creams etc.
I guess I will make an appointment, I'm just hoping they will accept me.

Footle Fri 18-Sep-15 19:12:06

Eucerin helps me, but it's not cheap. I don't know if it can be prescribed.

SeagullsAreLikeThat Fri 18-Sep-15 19:24:38

Simple skincare and hair products have parabens in which may be affecting you. My dermatologist said avoid parabens like the plague, they're awful for people with dry /sensitive skin. When you start looking at ingredients, it's amazing how many brands which claim to be gentle and for sensitive skin actually contain known irritants. The only products I have found that I can use are from a website called Purenuffstuff. Chemical free and you can either have scented or unscented - they only use essential oils as fragrance but even those set me off.

Livingbythesea1 Fri 18-Sep-15 19:26:04

I would second SLS free shampoo/shower gel ect-I have had really bad skin all my life and it has made a massive difference to me. It did take a few weeks for me to see an improvement.

Re the GP apt-take photos of flare ups with your phone and take a skin care diary for a few days to show that this condition has a massive effect on your daily life.

I might just try a multivitamin as well-cover all bases.
Good Luck!

PeepPeep Wed 23-Sep-15 11:47:20

I used to use Epaderm as well but when I finally got a Dermatology appointment via my GP, she changed me to HYDROMOL. I think this is what you are after ... it's even more gunky and tacky than Epaderm I'm afraid, but it is the most effective emollient I have come across.

I am a lot older than you, but my back story is similar to yours. I got a Dermatology appointment when my GP saw me with a bad flare up (and I also went armed with photos) ... it has all been a lengthy wait, but worth it. I have now had patch testing done and have found several things I'm allergic to. I'm still trying to come to terms with these, as I was really taken aback at some of them.
The Dr explained that eczema outbreaks do not necessarily occur at the site of where contact with the allergen takes place - hence why it's often so baffling and hard to work out Why a flare up has happened. Some are also not immediate and can take 48 hours plus to develop on your skin.

I also chatted to the Nurse I was when I was getting the patches on and asked why GPs are so reluctant to refer to Dermatology - I wondered if it was to do with the pressure on the Dept, if GPs 'got into trouble' for referring people when a splosh of steroid was all that was needed - she said, no, it's just that GPs think/try to fix everything, but you should trust your instinct and insist on a referral, and if they won't do it you should get a second opinion elsewhere.

I hope that's helpful - if nothing else, do try Hydromol, I think it's prescription only.

PeepPeep Wed 23-Sep-15 11:54:36

Oh yes and also, I went private to see a Dermatologist on the advice of the GP when he was worried and how long I would have to wait (oh the irony!) - it cost me £200 for what was in effect a nice long chat.

The private Dermo agreed with me that I was probably allergic to something, but advised waiting to get my NHS referall through as their patch testing would be more thorough than one he would do, and his would cost £500 by the time I was done!

So save your cash and try to get an NHS dermatology appointment, but be prepared for a long wait.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Wed 23-Sep-15 12:02:07

In the meantime (while you wait for this referral), Moogoo products are as natural as can be (they deliberately make them 'edible' so that they're no danger should a child ingest them!) Not sure what you'd need as the range is wide & I've used it for seb derm - but one of their creams is now available on prescription. Will find out which one.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Wed 23-Sep-15 12:51:48

It's three actually: Irritable Skin Balm; Scalp Cream (the one I use); and Skin Milk Udder Cream.

donkir Tue 06-Oct-15 22:32:44

My 13yr old has eczema and we've found its worse in the spring/summer when he's out on cut grass and in woods ect. It's miles better if he takes an antihistamine. Worth a try and you can get them for 49p in savers.

wellIdeclare Sun 11-Oct-15 21:23:49

My dd (18) has suffered really badly from excema over the years, particularly on her hands, arms and inside elbows which would get red raw, particularly in the winter months. She has tried every cream under the sun both on and off prescription and, like you, finds they work for a little while and then cease to have any effect. However, she has recently started using coconut oil on the affected areas at night - you can buy it in the supermarkets in the baking section - not cheap, about £6 a jar but you don't need much. This has had a miraculous effect and, for the first time in a few years, her hands and arms have looked like normal again. It took about a week to 10 days to sort it out and she keeps it at bay by continuing to use it before she goes to bed each night. If you haven't tried this before it may well be useful to give it a try. I hope it works - I know how much my dd hates her excema and it can be so soul destroying when you try everything and nothing ever seems to make it any better.

magicpuppy Mon 02-Nov-15 10:50:15

Have you ever tried any La Roche Posay products? My nine year old dd has eczema that sounds very similar to yours. She is extremely dry but doesn't have too many flare ups and hasn't had sore weepy skin since she was a toddler.

We have found the La Roche products very effective. The Lipikar range has been a wonder for us. We use cleansing oil in the bath, the Surgras/Syndet for showering and the Kerium Dry Dandruff shampoo. We have the Lipikar moisturiser and the Cicaplast for flare ups.

I know the same products don't work for everyone but I've always found it easy to get samples. Our Boots stock them so it is worth checking there for samples.

I spent a fortune over a number of years on lots of creams etc and found these to be by far the best for dd.

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