The Power of Hydration: How Moisture Helps with Eczema Relief

Moisturizers

Eczema is a difficult skin condition to deal with, but did you know that you can keep flare-ups at bay with just a simple step? Your key to relieving symptoms is hydration! Whether through drinking ample amounts of water or reapplying topical moisturizers, maintaining moisturized skin is an easy way to prevent eczema from causing you discomfort. Read on to learn more.

How Does the Skin’s Protective Barrier Work?

Skin Layers

Our skin consists of three main layers—the epidermis, dermis, and subcutaneous tissue. 

The epidermis, which is the outermost layer of our skin, is the main fortress that protects our body from environmental elements such as pollutants and allergens. It is made up of dead cells and covered by a hydrolipidic film, which is a light protective layer comprising perspiration, water, sebum, and lipids (fats). It also contains the acid mantle, which is a slightly acidic coating that safeguards against the growth of bacteria, viruses, and fungi that could damage your skin and cause problems. This skin barrier can only function optimally when there is sufficient moisture

The Protective Skin Layer in Eczema-Prone Skin

If you suffer from eczema, the chances of you having a compromised skin barrier is high. In fact, research has shown that the skin of eczema patients usually possess a lower amount of moisture and skin lipids. This also translates into a reduced hydrolipidic film, which means you’ll have less protection against external factors. 

Why is that so? Well, there are two reasons for that. 

  1. Genetics: You may lack a skin protein known as filaggrin, which is important for the formation of the skin barrier.
  2. Environmental elements: Temperatures, humidity, and your lifestyle habits can be causing a water or lipid imbalance, making your skin permeable to allergens and irritants.

The Role of Hydration

Think that hydration means introducing more water into your skin? While that’s not wrong, it’s actually about preventing moisture from escaping. 

Our epidermis is made up of water, but 80% of this moisture comes from our dermis, which is responsible for storing water and distributing them to the epidermis cells and the hydrolipidic film. 

Hydration helps to replenish your skin’s protective barrier by promoting the flow of moisture to the surface of your skin, compensating for any deficits caused by dehydration. It also serves as a shield that stops water from evaporating into the air in a process called transepidermal water loss. 

When your skin is exposed to elements that can dry out the skin, for instance, hot showers or cold weathers, you need to seal in moisture and encourage water to circulate within by hydrating your skin. 

How to Improve Moisture to Strengthen Skin Barrier

In eczema-prone skin, hydration can bring about numerous benefits that go beyond fortifying your skin barrier. It also helps to provide relief so that you can get on with your daily life without experiencing uncomfortable itch or pain. Here’s how you can strengthen your skin against external elements:

1. Moisturize Your Skin Regularly

A Person Applying Moisturizer

Eczema relief moisturizers may contain humectants, occlusives, and emollients, all of which are key ingredients that work to lock in moisture. Applying a layer of moisturizer to your skin improves skin hydration by increasing water content in your epidermis and creating a barrier to reduce transepidermal water loss. But that’s not all, it also reinforces the hydrolipidic film to protect your skin from friction and allow it to fend against irritants and allergens. It may also have anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties that can help with relieving symptoms. 

Learn More: Should You Be Using Topical Steroids on Eczema?

2. Drink Plenty of Water

Cups of Water

Your water intake will not directly hydrate your skin, but it does help to maintain several essential bodily functions that can contribute to a healthier skin. Hence, always try to down at least seven to eight cups of water throughout the day. It’ll help to flush out toxins, repair cells, and improve skin elasticity, bolstering your skin barrier. 

3. Maintain Optimal Humidity Levels at Home

The humidity level of your environment has a direct impact on your skin because dry air will pressure your skin to give up its moisture through transepidermal water loss. To prevent this, invest in a humidifier and let it increase moisture levels in your atmosphere. With enough water vapors in the air, you’ll be able to keep your skin supple and hydrated. 

Whether it’s hydrating your skin daily with an eczema relief moisturizer or showering with a body wash for sensitive skin, paying attention to how you moisturize and care for your skin can do wonders for your condition.

AweMed Series provides a range of eczema relief products, including itchy skin moisturizers and gentle cleansers to help you manage your symptoms. They are formulated locally with expert dermatologists to offer you the relief you desire. Check out our collection here

References

Eucerin. (n.d.). EUC-INT-ph5-2017_ABOUT-SKIN_skins-protective-barrier_00_header_c. https://int.eucerin.com/about-skin/basic-skin-knowledge/skins-protective-barrier

Mfa, R. J. S. (2022b, August 31). What to know about your skin barrier and how to protect it. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/skin-barrier

Sator, P., Schmidt, J. B., & Hönigsmann, H. (2003). Comparison of epidermal hydration and skin surface lipids in healthy individuals and in patients with atopic dermatitis. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 48(3), 352–358. https://doi.org/10.1067/mjd.2003.105

Why does eczema alter the skin’s barrier? (2022, May 17). Ducray. https://www.ducray.com/en-gb/eczema-need/why-does-eczema-alter-the-skins-barrier

.Co, H. (2022, July 17). The importance of hydration and its benefits on the body. HYDRATIS. https://www.hydratis.co/en/blogs/blog/limportante-de-lhydratation-et-ses-benefices-sur-le-corps

Brady, K. (2022, September 12). 16 ways to hydrate your skin from the inside out, according to dermatologists. Prevention. https://www.prevention.com/beauty/skin-care/a36292880/how-to-hydrate-skin/

Manalo, D. (n.d.). 7 Ways Drinking water helps improve skin: Pure luxe medical: Medical spa. https://www.pureluxemedical.com/blog/7-ways-drinking-water-helps-improve-skin

Purnamawati, S., Indrastuti, N., Danarti, R., & Saefudin, T. (2017). The role of moisturizers in addressing various kinds of dermatitis: a review. Clinical Medicine & Research, 15(3–4), 75–87. https://doi.org/10.3121/cmr.2017.1363

PointPerformance. (2019, April 16). Water: the benefits of hydration for recovery and rehabilitation from injuries. Point Performance. https://www.pointperformance.com/the-benefits-of-water-for-recovery/

Water. (2021, July 6). The Nutrition Source. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/water/

Tusher, C. (2024, January 22). Transepidermal Water Loss: What it is + How to Prevent It – biossance-us. Biossance-us. https://www.biossance.com/blog/transepidermal-water-loss/

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