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Monday, January 16, 2012

Life with Eczema...

Eczema is something I have dealt with in some form for my entire life. My grandmother has it (very minor), my mom has is, I have it...and now Si has it. So far hers is at a minimal and I hope to keep it at that!! If possible!

I remember having it bad as a kid. With activities and therefore sweat, I would get it badly behind my knees and on my arms at the bend from the elbow...but that was what we considered "bad" at the time. Through high school it seemed to flare in those areas as well as my lips. Yep, the perfect place for a teenager to have eczema. Dry, cracking, flaky lips...just what a teenager wanted. To me, it was kind of like someone having to deal with a giant zit in the middle of their face. At least there was cover-up for that!
Over the years I have had flare ups..coming and going depending upon weather, stress level along with moisture. My eczema through the years has gotten worse. No longer is it contained to those few areas; in fact, it would likely be a much shorter list if I were to tell you where it WASN'T. With each pregnancy it would generally get better in the beginning months, and by the end, be so bad it would hurt to bend my fingers and I would be lucky to get my rings off of my swollen raw knuckles. I know, pretty picture...but to say eczema has at times ruled my life would be a minor understatement. My breastfeeding abilities for both Kai and Si were drastically hindered due to the severity of eczema on my nipples...yep that's right...Its pretty much EVERYWHERE.  Thankfully with baby number three, T, my eczema seemed to have lessened or completely disappeared in certain areas...however only getting worse in others. As a mom, your hands are always in water....this does not help the situation. I think you know it's bad when you stick your hands in HOT water...and it feels so good because it itches the rash for you and oddly enough, the scalding hot water actually feels, cold!?

Anyways, I am dreaming of the day I no longer need creams, ointments and whatever else I have tried (that only temporarily mask the problem)...and trust me I have tried lots...

Which brings me to my point here...I think my next step is to reduce gluten from my diet. I have read and heard that this is a cause of many peoples eczema...and I figure, why not! It will be a bit of an adjustment...but if it ends up being my "be all end all" I AM IN!
I also suffer from IBS which I developed after the birth of baby number 2...Si. Oh the things our children bless us with ;) lol. Gluten is another factor to IBS which I have heard of from many. Why not try to kill two birds with one stone, right!?

There are certain things in life you cant really control...the weather, stress (to an extent)...but I can control what I put in my mouth. So tomorrow, I am beginning a Gluten Free attempt in hopes of clear skin and a normal tummy. I cant wait for the day I am excited to show off my wedding ring and not be embarrassed by the eczema that encases my hand.

So, if anyone out there has any suggestions please pass them on!
From words of wisdom on eczema treatments and/or IBS...to recipes they love for the Gluten Free lifestyle...I am excited to learn and see if this next attempt is my last...attempt.

Today my hands are "masked" as I loaded them with cream last night...the next flare I will capture a photo...in hopes of a before and after for the positive change that is about to take place.

Wish me luck ;)

Came across this blog...Gluten Free Vancouver. Great recipes and tips!

And an article on Gluten and dry-skin/eczema.

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