Eczema during Pregnancy


Eczema or atopic dermatitis is due to a hypersensitivity reaction similar to an allergy in the skin, which leads to long-term swelling and redness (inflammation) of the skin. People with eczema may lack certain proteins in the skin, which leads to greater sensitivity. Symptoms of eczema can worsen due to cold or the flue, pollen in the air, dry skin, emotional problems and stress, etc.

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If a woman is suffering from eczema, there are chances that during her pregnancy, her hormones can affect the eczema. Now this affect may be for the better or worse. Due to the change in hormones, eczema can either flare up or get better. But no one is sure as to why the flare ups or remission happen, although the obvious answer could be the changes in hormone levels.

During pregnancy, eczema may be treated in a slightly different way, since the medicines and strong creams can pass through to the womb and harm the child. Certain creams with steroids are thought to be alright to use during pregnancy to treat eczema. But they should be used in small quantities and under strict medical supervision. There is quite a list of topical medicines and systemic antibiotics that should not be used at all, and this should be checked by the doctor as well.


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Antihistamines can be used as well, but it is extremely important to check with the doctor first. These will help with the flare ups and control the itchiness to some extent.

Coal tar should be used, as it has a very soothing affect on the skin. Many variations of coal tar are available these days, and they can be bought over the counter as well. While its helps the symptoms of eczema tremendously, it smells pretty bad and also stains.  But this is the best method to treat eczema during pregnancy as it is topical and the expecting mother does not need to take anything orally.

Non prescriptive remedies such as herbs and natural methods should have the doctors approval first, before they are tried.


Expecting mothers should try and keep cool by wearing light and loose clothes. They should moisturize their skin regularly with a good cream so they don’t have dry skin, which would result in itching and scratching.  Patients should also stay calm, as it has been seen that stress is one of the major triggers of eczema.

Research has suggested that breastfeeding can prevent eczema to be passed on the infant, so mothers should definitely nurse their new borns, especially if they have eczema.


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