>> Friday, 2 December 2011
For the past few weeks I’ve been getting up and running around the house without any central heating. – a combination of macho defiance and a miserly look at the gas bill – but unheard of in November. Well, that’s all changed. The last few days has seen the weather turn and it looks like Winter is on it’s way at last. We’ve had the first frost and the delights of scraping the ice from my car windscreen in the morning. I’ve now succumbed and the heating fires up 30 minutes before I dip my toe out of bed, so perhaps reality has finally kicked in.
Now it’s bad enough for us to cope with these unseasonal temperatures, but just think about those thousands of patients who suffer from eczema. Dramatic change in temperature and humidity can have a devastating effect on their condition. Any significant change in temperature and humidity can trigger an increase in skin sensitivity, which brings on an intense episode of redness and itching, often referred to as a flare.
Many people think that heating the house counters the impact of the drop in outside temperature but it’s not as simple as that. An increase in temperature decreases humidity, so the effect of central heating is to dry the skin even further, making the eczema worse.
And you can’t hide away indoors all the time. Children want to go outside and play with their friends, but the sudden drop in temperature from a centrally heated house to a wintry December morning can create havoc with their sensitive skins. While we can happily wrap up with woolly clothes to keep ourselves warm, wool can be a severe irritant to eczematous skin and makes the itching so intense it becomes unbearable. Man-made materials are even worse as they don’t allow the skin to breathe, and the increased moisture on the skin only aggravates the condition. And then you have the exposed bits like faces. Wind, rain and cold are no friend to the child suffering with eczema, and it can make winter a misery for them.
DermaSilk may not be a cure for eczema, but it sure makes changing conditions a little more bearable, so for those who suffer from the ravages of the disease, life can almost be normal, even if our weather isn’t.