Around the Home
Indoor allergens and
can trigger the signs and symptoms of atopic dermatitis, a type of
eczema that occurs when there is a genetic predisposition to atopic
conditions, such as asthma and hay fever. Taking some precautions around
the home can help prevent flare-ups:
Control Dust Mites. Some studies suggest that reducing dust mites can reduce symptoms;
other studies show no effect. For the most part, only children have
shown improvement when dust mites were controlled. This is what can be
done to control dust mites in a child’s room:
Eliminate carpeting, rugs and blinds.
Limit upholstered furniture. The only upholstered item in the bedroom
should be the bed.
Cover box spring and mattress in plastic zippered covers and wipe off
Keep furnishings to a minimum. Only items made of wood, rubber, metal
or plastic should be used. That goes for toys, too.
Use a pillow and mattress pad made of Dacron®.
Clean the room thoroughly each week. This should include wiping the
floor, furniture, tops of doors, window frames and sills with a damp
cloth or oil mop.
Wash all bed clothes and curtains at least once a week in water that
is 130° F or hotter.
Air the room thoroughly after cleaning.
Keep all animals with fur or feathers out.
Keep home’s humidity level between 45% and 55%.
Dehumidifiers and humidifiers can keep humidity levels between 45% and
55%. Use a hygrometer, a device that measures humidity, to monitor the
amount of moisture in the air. Hygrometers are available in places where
thermometers are sold, such as a local hardware store.
Avoid contact with pets that have fur or feathers. When fur and feathers come
into contact with skin, they can cause a flare-up. Pet dander is another
common trigger. Be sure to keep pets with fur or feathers out of the
contact with harsh dish-washing products and
natural alternatives to bleaches and
other cleaners that contain harsh chemicals.
If you must
cleansers, wear protective gloves. Wearing cotton gloves under rubber
gloves can help prevent a flare-up if you have an allergy to latex.
5. Cover up in the yard.
If plants or other things in the yard trigger a flare-up, wearing gloves
and long pants and sleeves may help prevent a flare-up.
AAD Guidelines of Care for Atopic Dermatitis.
July 26, 2003
to Create a Dust-free Bedroom,” National Institute of Allergy and
Infectious Diseases. National Institutes of Health. U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services. October 2001
Tips to maximize the effectiveness of
bathing and moisturizing
found these methods effective
Tips for preventing dry skin when the humidity drops