Gabby Bachner, a pharmacy student at the Georgia University of Athens, discovered that he had eczema shortly after attending university. Her specific type is called contact dermatitis, which occurs when her body comes into contact with something that causes an allergic reaction. Bachner, who works in a pharmacy, discovered that her scrubs and certain lotions can cause eczema.
Eczema can cause many uncomfortable symptoms, including:
- Itchy, dry, cracked, scaly or bumpy skin
These changes can also have emotional and psychological effects. Bachner said that her eczema attack would definitely affect her self-confidence.
Eczema and mental health
Your skin is the largest organ, so appearance problems may have psychological effects.
Low self-confidence can damage your mental health. Dr. Mamta Jhaveri, assistant professor of dermatology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, said: “Eczema occurs in both children and adults. We do know the occurrence of depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and many sleep disorders. The rate is higher.”
Compared with people without eczema, people with eczema have a higher chance of suffering from depression and anxiety. If you have severe eczema, the odds are even higher. This can lead to frustrating cycles. Jaweri said: “Stress can make eczema worse, and eczema can make stress worse.”
Eczema can affect your mental health in three main ways:
- Chronic itching. Eczema usually causes itching that you cannot control. When you are in a public place, it may be difficult to hide your scratches. This can lead to stress, anxiety, and worry about other people’s thoughts.
- inflammation. Chronic diseases such as eczema are caused by inflammation. Jhaveri said it can lower your energy level and make it difficult to concentrate.
- Visible symptoms. Eczema usually affects areas that are difficult to cover, such as your face, eyes, hands or limbs. These areas may swell, scaly, crack or bleed, which may reduce your self-image.
Bachner said that past eczema vacations have never been stress-free. Before traveling, she often had pedicures. The lotion used during treatment can cause eczema on the legs. And because many eczema treatments do not take effect immediately, she cannot control the epidemic before she leaves. This makes it difficult to feel confident in swimsuits. She worries that people will mistake it for an infection.
The combination of self-confidence, itching, and lower fatigue may make it difficult to get along with others in flares. Patients with eczema usually desire a comfortable and private environment. You may need to stay at home and take care of your skin.
Jahawili said: “This does cause many work errors, schools are out of school, and people sometimes choose not to participate in social activities.” Eczema can also affect intimate relationships. …If it affects the face or any private parts, it may affect interpersonal relationships. “
How to feel more confident
When Jhaveri treats people with eczema, she also uses the Anxiety and Depression Rating Scale to measure how their skin condition affects their mental health.
But the first line of treatment is always to control eczema. She said: “Sometimes, it can help improve the psychological side effects.” If the skin symptoms do not disappear, Jhaveri will help people find more help.
Children and adults have slightly different ways of building confidence. There are a few things parents can do to help build a child’s self-image:
- Ask their peers. For parents of children with eczema, it is important to ask about their school and social life. If you think your child’s peers are bullying them because of their condition, please solve it as soon as possible.
- sleep tight. You and your child’s doctor can help solve your child’s sleep problems related to eczema. They may suggest that your child take melatonin supplements or use anti-itch medicine to help them fall asleep at night. Good sleep is directly related to a child’s self-image. With more sleep, they will feel more confident and focus on school, which will enhance their self-image.
These steps can help adults improve their mental health and body image:
- Get professional help. If eczema damages your confidence, consult a therapist or psychiatrist. They can help you regain self-confidence and provide psychological tips on how to deal with skin conditions.
- Join an online support group. Jhaveri often advises patients with eczema to join support groups on Facebook or join the National Eczema Association. These channels can help you connect with others and share tips to build confidence.
- Chat with your family. If you want, it can help you tell your relatives how eczema affects you emotionally. In this way, when your self-image is not at the highest level, you will be able to talk to or rely on others.
- Practice meditation. Relieving stress can play an important role in your body image and self-confidence. Jhaveri recommends meditation or other relaxation techniques, such as yoga, tai chi or music therapy. She said that all these things can help you reconnect with your inner self. This can help you understand the impact of eczema on your self-image.
- write down. Jhaveri said it might be helpful to write stories or diaries about how your skin condition affects you. Sharing with people around you can help you release your depressed mood and help you accept your feelings.
- Take a step back. Bachner said that to restore confidence, one of the best things she can do is to think rationally. She said that it is easy to feel that everyone is paying attention to your eczema. But unless you point it out, most people won’t even notice your flare. It is important to remember that self-confidence comes from self-acceptance. “It’s not your fault to have eczema,” Bachner said. “Try not to let it get into trouble. …people don’t pay attention to your thoughts.”