Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Living With Eczema: Part 2

The thing that people don't seem to realise with eczema is that it really can be so severe that it is classed as a disability.

In my individual case, my skin gets so sore and weepy that I can't put clothing on because it just makes it all the more worse, in both the sense of heat, and also because it irritates and dries out my skin further. When the skin weeps it often dries with fibres stuck inside it, which is not exactly helpful to the wounds to have a foreign body lodged within them. So I find my best way to deal with a bad flare is to just spend the day being naked. This itself causes a whole array of problems with health and safety and the fact that I cannot leave the house, or generally carry out day-to-day activities. Walking about can also be difficult if it is bad on the backs of my knees and bending down and such is even worse.

It isn't just because of the fact that I need to remain naked that it causes problems. When I am in such a bad state (you must have seen videos of little children on Youtube crying because of the itching and pain) I am going through the exact same thing. I am in torment because of the itching and pain as at the time there is just no escape, once it has you in its grips, it has you good. It means I am unable to summon the will or the physical ability to do anything because it has such a hold over me. Now for many people who simply say, just don't scratch, or whatever... it just isn't that simple at all.

From what I can assume, and from how others have described how they think it is, a lot of people have the belief that it must be similar to a rash, or insect bite where you can't stop scratching it. In a way yes, it is like this, but at the same time it's so much more complex. Firstly, the itch isn't confined to just one area, it spreads like wildfire all over your body. Secondly, their scratching usually won't cause deep gouges, scratch marks, weeping skin or scabs; it will just remain as a red rash.

The other thing people, friends, acquaintances, even close friends, do not realise is how long it will actually take for me to get up and ready. I know I touched on this briefly in Part 1 but I didn't go into its full extent as much as I intended to. A day where I know I will have work, for example a 5pm-9pm shift, will have me waking up at around 8am, showering and spending the entire day slathering myself in moisturiser just so I know I can be comfortable in my clothing. That is an entire day completely wasted because of my extremely necessary routines which is incredibly scary to think about.

Coming home from work is no different. As soon as I walk through the door I'm in the shower, spending a large amount of time just laying in the bath tub trying to relax myself. I then cover myself in moisturiser for the rest of the evening and turn in for bed. The next day is either usually spent carrying out the exact same routine, or as a recovery day, where I will spend the day trying to preen my skin to a comfortable state for work the following day.

It ain't a good way to live, but it's how I have to live unfortunately. The days where I have to quickly carry out my routine are the days where I definitely pay for it later on. I generally end up spending days and days trying to recover again.

So there you have it. Those who don't have eczema or a chronic illness may consider yourselves so lucky that you are able to work a full time job and balance your busy social and family life. I know that I took it all for granted at the times when I was well enough.


1 comment :

  1. Hi Jenny,
    Thanks for sharing. Really appreciate your transparency.

    I have ezcema from young till now (middle age). Having a bad flare now too. Having to bear with the pain and the nauceating smell of the weeping fluid, depressing moments when clearing the flakes off my bed everyday, i am going back to a diet i tried few years back that worked miracle. Due lack of discipline i stopped and the monster came back.

    Not sure if you heard of the alkaline diet? If you are interested you can get a copy of this book called The PH Miracle by Dr Robert O Young. The principle is that our blood needs to maintain a PH of 7.365 as this is the best position to fight off the bacteria, etc and keep our body protected. Food will be the first source of this alkalinity needed but if all we take is acidic food then our body will turn to the organs and extract the minerals to maintain the slight alkalinity needed. This is when our body goes crazy.
    You can read the book for the actual and additional benefits of this diet.

    After i followed a strict regime of this diet (i skipped the detox part, went straight into the diet) i saw improvement after 1 week. After 1 to 2 months the sores that had been weeping for so long suddenly cleared up. I no longer feel itchy and the vicious cycle stopped. Rashes were gone. Darken skin areas cleared up too (i did not expect this to happen so was really thrilled to find out). My digestive system improved too. No more embarassing gas and the poopoo is not smelly.

    The diet is to keep the acidic foods off - sugar, meat except fish, dairy products, yeast, caffeine, etc. Tomatoes, avocadoes, vegetables, fruits like unripe banana, lemon, grapefruit, apples only. Minimum salad dressing. Almond nuts if u need a snack to munch. Soya is a good substitute for milk too. I know this is difficult but no choice. I am also trying to see if i can find a more sustainable form of alkaline diet.

    I hope you can try and see if it work for you as well. I don't think i can carry on living with this monster. It has serious affected my quality of life.

    I really hope you can get completely delivered from this monster and gain back your beautiful skin.

    You are a brave and beautiful lady. Jesus loves you and so do many of the folks here. God bless.