Dermatologist Offers Advice For People With Eczema, AD In Laredo Heat

Even though the heat has eased off a bit recently, warm temperatures regularly remain in the triple digits. So, a dermatologist familiar with the area says people with skin conditions, and people in general, need to be wary of their skin health during the summer.

Across the country, millions of Americans live with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis – the most common form of eczema – and the summer heat can cause painful itching and breakouts all over the body that can impact on daily life. Many in Laredo suffer from this condition.

“For many people with moderate to severe eczema or atopic dermatitis, a large part of their life is spent coping with persistent and often debilitating symptoms that can disrupt their lives,” said Dr Annabelle Garcia, a San Dermatologist certified by the Board of Antonio de Laredo. “Usually, patients with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis tend to complain of intense and persistent itching, dry cracked skin that can sometimes be painful or oozing, and this is especially true in the summer,”

Garcia raises awareness of the disease and its impact on those living with it through Now Me: Beach Mode, a program in partnership with Dupixent to educate about the realities and challenges faced by people with moderate to severe AD.

Garcia said this mainly happens when people with the condition spend time during the summer getting into a body of water, like the beach, because the salty water makes their delicate skin itchy, and also when they enter swimming pools which cause wrinkles and make their skin condition. blaze. Although many people believe that direct sunlight makes the condition worse, the fact is that heat alone without direct sunlight is what makes it worse.

“More than anything, it’s the heat that can exacerbate this. Whenever patients complain of sweating or increased heat or feeling overheated, it can definitely affect the skin and make symptoms worse,” Garcia said. “The sun’s rays can actually impact patients by directly causing them more uncomfortable symptoms.”

Garcia says sunscreen of any type is recommended for people who live in hot, arid regions like Laredo.

“We always advocate sun protection, especially in places like Laredo which have a very hot climate,” she said. “Everyday sun protection with an SPF of at least 30, and I tend to recommend more physical blockers for my patients with eczema and moderate to severe AD, as they tend to have more skin I recommend physical blockers such as zinc, oxide, or titanium oxide that sit on the skin to protect against strong UV rays more than chemical sunscreens, as chemical sunscreens tend to be more irritants for patients with eczema.

While wearing long clothes and hats is good for sun protection, she says it’s not good for patients with moderate to severe AD or eczema, as the heat will cause the irritation.

She said that in the severe cold, people with this disease can also suffer if exposed to extreme temperatures.

“In colder climates it tends to be a lot drier and there isn’t as much humidity in the environment. So eczema tends to actually flare up and sometimes even more so in the winter or during the colder months,” Garcia said.

People with eczema typically suffer from red, itchy, scaly patches that can become painful, and many people even complain that they can’t sleep because of the irritation.

Although anyone who thinks they might have moderate to severe AD and has the symptoms associated with the condition, Garcia still recommends getting an official diagnosis of the condition from a board-certified dermatologist. She says there are many “misconceptions” people can have about certain skin conditions, and they can also make what they really have worse if they don’t diagnose what they have correctly.

Garcia said treatments for moderate-to-severe eczema or AD range from topical over-the-counter therapies like moisturizers to prescription oral steroids, prescription creams and immune and biologic treatments like Dupixent, with which she is currently working. Staying hydrated is another way people can alleviate some of the symptoms associated with the disease.

“Being hydrated definitely helps because dehydration can affect the skin. But honestly, the most important components of treating eczema are using moisturizers and other optical treatments,” Garcia said.

The dermatologist also provided other tips for people who might not have eczema to make sure they don’t have irritated skin.

“In general, I recommend gentle skincare, so we recommend low-scent topical treatments,” Garcia said. “One of my favorites are over-the-counter moisturizers. I also recommend that if the eczema or skin condition isn’t well controlled, see a board-certified dermatologist, as we have plenty of great prescription options. available to patients and new treatment options that we didn’t have before.”

Treating eczema or other skin conditions can be “life-changing” for patients, Garcia said, as many report being able to go out, swim and do more outdoor activities, and socialize as their condition progresses. is improving.

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