The face, particularly the cheeks, is one of the areas of the body most commonly affected by eczema. Being told to avoid touching your face can be rather difficult for anyone, as has been made apparent during the Covid-19 pandemic, but for adults with facial eczema, it can seem impossible. For children with facial eczema, this instruction is also completely unrealistic. What’s more, the face coverings that are currently required by law to be worn in certain places seem to be heightening the symptoms of this condition.
Do you or your child suffer from facial eczema? Are face masks making this type of eczema worse?
Face Masks And Eczema
For individuals with sensitive skin, let alone eczema, face masks can cause discomfort and irritation. Wearing a mask, regardless of which type, increases skin temperature, moisture and friction. This not only affects the skin that is covered, but the backs of the ears, the bridge of the nose and the area under the chin or jaw!
It is important to know that there are many options when it comes to face masks. You don’t have to wear a disposable mask that is manufactured using non-woven fabrics made from plastics like polypropylene. Cotton, silk and other eczema-friendly face masks are readily accessible, as are numerous “How-To” guides that enable you to make your own face masks.
Perhaps you have an old t-shirt made from a gentle fabric that you know is compatible with, and friendly to, your, or your child’s, skin. Do the earloops of a face mask irritate the skin? If so, try headloops that tie around the back of the head instead. A further benefit of making your own mask is that its size can be tailored to your preference. Face masks and coverings are worn to filter and protect. When using a cloth mask, ensure that it is washed with hot water and a gentle detergent after each time it is worn.
We all have a part to play in the fight against Covid-19 and must work together to slow the spread of SARS-CoV-2 and protect those most vulnerable.
Wearing a face mask that is made from an eczema-friendly fabric that doesn’t worsen your eczema would be the ideal scenario at this time. Only wear a face mask when necessary and keep the skin moisturised with a gentle emollient like those found in the EXeczema® product range. However, if this doesn’t help and eczema flare-ups continue or worsen, you should contact your GP or dermatologist as you, or your child, may be exempt from this particular face coverings law.
Head to execzema.com to learn more about eczema, the skin and to discover Explain Eczema, our digital learning programme designed for the parents of pre-teens with atopic eczema. Once you can explain eczema yourself, you will be able to identify the cause of your child’s individual eczema. What do you think happens when that cause is removed?