Need help with my skin rash - Mothering Forums
 
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#1 of 5 Old 07-24-2006, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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A few weeks after my daughter was born, I developed a very itchy, burny rash on my forehead and upper back. A derm diagnosed it as allergic dermatitis and prescribed a cortisone cream, which I felt uncomfortable using as I am breastfeeding. She also prescribed Allegra which I also didn't take due to BF'ing. Fast forward to 4 months later and this rash is now on my arms, chest, face, ears, back, eyelids, and hip. It itches unbelievably.


The allergist did a skin prick test and found I am allergic to dust mites, mold, and cockroaches, but it could be chemicals (lotion, soap, hair products,m fabric softener....) causing the problem too (now dx as eczema). No food allergies were detected with that test. Clearly our nasty apartment (luxury apartment supposedly too) is killing me (old, old carpet, mold problems, bad air ducts, roaches I see on occasion). Nothing I can do about that though, really


They gave this stuff called Elidel to use on my face, a cortisone cream, and also prescribed allegra. We had discussed my breastfeeding in detail, so I foolishly and desperately used the Elidel cream for one week on my face, and it was like miracle... However, once I researched it out of curiosity, I found it is a horrible drug that has the strongest warning possible by the FDA and can cause cancer, should never be given to breastfeeding mamas, can cause illness (which it did for me - my lymph nodes on either side of my face swelled up HUGE and now I know why, and it gave me diarrhea and nausea).

Okay, so now what do I do? I am in pain and itching so bad I can't sleep often. I am also ugly, which is very upsetting really, as my skin was always exceptional. I don't trust docs now (didn't really before, but didn't know who else to go to for help..).

I need a homeopathic remedy for the itching and redness if possible,and maybe some diet tips or something to help? I am seriously getting frantic with this and worry I might actually hurt myself because I am getting sort of illogical from it.
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#2 of 5 Old 07-25-2006, 12:58 AM
 
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Wow! Let's start w/ personal care products. Can you make a complete switch from what you are using? I really recommend Kiss My Face pure olive bar soap (or any real soap made from mainly olive oil. The ingredients will list olive oil first, either calling it saponified olive oil or listing the oil and then sodium hydroxide separately. My local natural foods store sells locally made handmade soaps. Be careful that they don't list coconut oil first or second. Coconut oil soap is drying and bad for sensitive skin. 100% olive is best, but can be hard to find.) If you can't find that, Dove Sensitive Skin is also good. For shampoo, I really like California Baby shampoo. It comes in an unscented version for sensitive skin. It can also be used as a body wash. (Or just use the olive oil soap w/ a final rinse of a little vinegar in a cup of water--maybe a Tbs.) California Baby also sells sunblock and lotion. Get rid of any regular shampoos/bodywashes/soaps/etc. What detergent do you use? Natural ones are usually ok for people w/ sensitive skin if they are unscented. I use ALL Free and CLear ONLY. We all have sensitive skin in my family and everything else breaks us out, including Tide Free. We can't use natural detergents b/c of our hard water (we also live in an apartment, so no water softener.) When we lived in PA, we used Trader Joe's natural detergent (lavender scented) with no problems. Wash your sheets and pillowcases at least once a week in hot hot water to help w/ the dust mites. Toss the fabric softener. To make your clothes softer, use half the amount of detergent called for and add 1/4 cup vinegar to the rinse (in the fabric softener dispenser or in a Downy ball or however you do fabric softener. In other words pretend vinegar is your new fabric softener.) I'd ditch the dryer sheets as well, if you use them, but Bounce does make an unscented version if you think you can't go without. I think my clothes are softer now than they were when I used softener. Then they weren't really soft, I realize now. They were more waxy feeling imo.

Do you wear make-up? Go without until you've healed and maybe then look for more natural stuff that's less irritating.

Olive oil works well as a moisturizer for eczema, so does coconut oil, especially virgin coconut oil (and it smells good, too!) Eucerine is not the most natural stuff, but the thick cream that comes in the tub is really soothing for eczema. Do NOT get the lotion though.

And using hydrocortisone cream sparingly once in a great while is OK for your baby. I mean you can't use it every day or even every week, but if your eczema is driving you crazy, it's ok to use it for a few days once in a while. Like use it for the next 2 days or so while you're finding all these new things, but don't use it again for at least 2 weeks, if needed. Steroids are considered unsafe, but only if you use them every day for long periods of time. A little once in a while is ok.
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#3 of 5 Old 07-25-2006, 01:02 AM
 
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P.S. I get eczema from dairy adn eggs, so if getting rid of all the unnatural shampoos, soaps, detergents, etc, doesn't sure you, an elimination diet is the next step. (((HUGS))) hope you're feeling better soon!
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#4 of 5 Old 07-26-2006, 03:44 PM
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I've also been battling eczema on my hands for about a year. It started during my third trimester with my third pg-cy.
I also switched to all natural products for everything from laundry to soaps, shampoos. It didn't make any difference. Then I went to the dermatologist in desperation who prescibed a steroid, of course. I used it once as it burned and was also uncomfortable using it while bf-ing. I also researched this a LOT and have found that there is a strong relationship between eczema and leaky gut syndrome/especially yeast overgrowth. It makes sense as I have other yeast issues.
Anyway, changing my diet helped a lot but I'm still not rash-free.
Check out the healing the gut tribe cheat sheet and thread, it's going to be overwhelming but it's worth investigating leaky gut as a possibility.

is your diet high in carbs, sugars, dairy and grains?
I started investigating the diet connection because I realized that eating chocolate or doughnuts make it a lot worse and itchy. Yeast feeds on sugar.
I don't have true allergies either but a lot of intolerances, which are due to leaky gut- the undigested food gets thought he holes in the intestines and wreak havoc. I can't have complex sugars, grains or lactose containing dairy, some nuts are a problem and cocoa/chocolate, too.
Oh, and I get hives from certain oils- like vegetable oils and omega 6-s in general even if they are supposed to be good for you like borage abd EPO.
These intolerances don't come up on the skin patch test.
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#5 of 5 Old 09-24-2006, 03:23 AM
 
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Hi swirly,

I know this post is quite old, but I was browsing this forum for some allergy recepies and came upon your post. I wanted to let you know that the same thin happened to me at the end of my pregnancy and after MUCH ado with allergist, dermatologist, etc I went to an herbalist who told me I was FULL of yeast and was 'diagnosed' with serious Candida (yeast overgrowth) Almost two years later and QUITE the lifestyle change, my body, mind and view on health has not only healed, but thrived. Unfortunatly I passed it on to my son in utero and he has multiple food allergies, but is also being herbaly and diet treated and is dong much better. I hope I am making sense, it's late.
If you are looking for any information, I would be happy to help. I have never experienced so much discomfort with the itching, I would have rather given birth two weeks in a row! I hope this message finds you well, but I wanted to share iwth you my story, in case you were still looking for answers.

Blessings,
mommaboogie
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