Issue #044 - Your Thyroid and Your Eczema
Welcome to March's edition of the Eczema Bulletin e-zine, and thank you for subscribing.
This is the 44th edition of the Eczema Bulletin. It will bring you articles and news about eczema, and also any updates to what-is-eczema.com. If you would like to add any suggestions for articles or news, or even add your own then I would love to hear from you.
You can contact me here
This month's Eczema Bulletin includes
- March's Featured Article – Your Thyroid and Your Eczema
- My favourite eczema news article
- Tip of the Month
- 5 Ways To.....manage cradle cap
Your Thyroid and Your Eczema
Your thyroid plays an important part in controlling and maintaining many different functions in your body.
To work properly, the thyroid gland needs to produce the right amount of the thyroid hormone thyroxine. If either too much or too little thyroxine is produced it can cause an imbalance in your body.
When your thyroid is under-active too little hormone is produced. This is known as hypothyroidism. It mainly affects women between the ages of 40 and 50 years, but it can affect anyone.
Some of the symptoms of hypothyroidism include
- dry skin
- asteatotic eczema
- delayed healing of wounds
- weight gain
- hair loss
- puffy face, hands and feet
Skin dryness and the delayed healing of wounds can also be found amongst the list of eczema symptoms. If you already suffer from eczema and you're diagnosed with an under-active thyroid, you may find that the symptoms of
your eczema get worse. Both conditions will need to be treated.
The thyroid also affects the gut and the gut lining. If you don't have a healthy thyroid you're unlikely to have a healthy gut and lining. The lining of the gut is a defence barrier, made up of lots of very small holes. These holes only allow certain substances to get through into the gut, like nutrients.
When the lining is damaged the holes become bigger. Damage can be caused by a high sugar diet, stress, alcohol and certain medications. These bigger holes allow different substances in, that normally couldn't get through.
As things get in, other substances can get out. Including bacteria, food particles and waste products. These leak into in the bloodstream. They are then carried in the blood around the body. Your immune system then kicks in, and the symptoms of an allergic reaction, like inflammation and itchiness, occur. These symptoms may appear as eczema.
diagnosed with an under-active or over-active thyroid and have not previously been an eczema sufferer, you may notice that you start developing patches of dry skin. Use an emollient to keep your skin moisturised, and if the symptoms get worse visit your doctor to get a proper diagnosis before trying different treatments.
If you currently have or have had eczema in the past you may find that your symptoms either get worse or reoccur. You can either use the treatments you usually use to deal with a flare up or visit your doctor if you need some advice.
Eczema News Article
Fitness blogger Carys Gray recently added a post on Instagram containing two photos. One is of her wearing make-up, and the other photo is of how she looks without make-up when she has a flare-up of eczema.
Part of her message is to show that not everything you see on social media is how it seems. Also that whether she is made up or is having an eczema flare-up that she accepts herself.
I think this is a great message to put on social media, especially with so many teenagers using it. If it helps just one person to feel happier in their own skin, or makes one person realise that you don't always see the whole story on social media, then it was a worthwhile post to make.
You can read more in this article at Shape.com.
Tip Of The Month - What is Molluscum Contagiosum?
Molluscum contagiosum is a viral infection caused by the molluscum contagiosum virus, also known as MCV.
The virus can affect anyone but is most commonly found in children and in anyone with a weakened immune system.
The main symptom of molluscum contagiosum is small spots that are firm and raised. You may find the spots are either red or pink, or that they have a small white head in the middle. The spots aren't painful but you may find them itchy. Don't be tempted to scratch them as this can increase the risk of infections spreading to other areas of your body.
The spots can be found on any part of the body but are more commonly found on the face, neck, back, chest, arms and legs.
Molluscum contagiosum, as the name suggests, is contagious. The good news is that the chance of the virus being passed to others is very small. Avoid sharing towels, clothes and baths to reduce the risk even more.
In most cases the symptoms can clear
within two months. If they spread to other areas of your body then they may take longer. There is no set amount of time, it could take a few months or between 6 and18 months. Every case is different. The spots may start clearing but then new spots could appear in their place, which could means it takes even longer to clear properly.
Treatment is not normally recommended. This is mainly because it clears without any treatment. If other symptoms occur or if the condition starts to affect everyday life then treatment may be given. This only tends to be for older children and adults.
You may be given a cream, ointment or gel to put directly on the skin. There are also some liquid treatments, including potassium hydroxide, that either break down the skin cells affected or poison the cells of the spots.
You may also be able to get the spots removed. One way this is done is by freezing.
If you have atopic eczema you may find that your molluscum
contagiosum becomes infected with bacteria. If this occurs you'll notice redness and swelling, and may feel pain. You'll be prescribed antibiotics if an infection occurs.
It is really important to get any condition diagnosed properly so it can be treated and managed the right way. Even though treatment isn't normally needed for molluscum contagiosum, treatment is needed for other conditions that have very similar symptoms. Always get it checked.