Summary: Eczema is a skin condition characterized by inflammation, dryness, and itching among others. Hormones have been found to play a significant role in its development and severity.
1. Hormonal changes and eczema
Eczema is known to occur more frequently in females than males. This is due to hormonal differences between the two sexes. The female hormone estrogen is known to increase inflammation in the body, thus making it harder for those afflicted with eczema to combat the condition. Hormonal changes during pregnancy and menopause have also been linked to worsening of eczema symptoms. Therefore, any underlying hormonal imbalance may lead to the development or worsening of eczema. It is, therefore, essential to keep track of any hormonal changes that may occur in case of an eczema flare-up.
On the other hand, male hormones like testosterone can lessen inflammation, making eczema less severe in men. Studies have shown that boys tend to outgrow eczema at a higher rate than girls, attributed to the effect of testosterone hormones on the immune system.
2. Stress hormones and eczema
Stress is commonly known to worsen eczema. When faced with stress, the body releases hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline to help the individual manage the situation. However, these hormones are known to increase inflammation, which triggers an eczema flare-up in individuals with the condition. Furthermore, cortisol has been found to exacerbate itching, leading to further skin damage.
Therefore, managing stress levels is essential for eczema patients. One can do this through mindfulness, meditation, deep breathing exercises, and regular exercise, among other ways. Additionally, consulting a health care practitioner to discuss ways of addressing stress is also vital.
3. Hormone replacement therapy and eczema
Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is administered to women experiencing symptoms of menopause, including dryness, hot flashes, mood swings, and others, through the administration of estrogen. This therapy can lead to the development of eczema or worsen pre-existing cases. Therefore, individuals on HRT should make their doctors aware of any eczema symptoms that may start to develop. Additionally, doctors may opt for alternative treatment options that do not involve estrogen in patients with a history of eczema.
However, some studies have shown that HRT can also offer relief from eczema symptoms. As menopausal women tend to have lower levels of estrogen, replenishing it through HRT may help reduce the occurrence and severity of eczema symptoms.
Eczema is a skin condition that affects millions of people worldwide, and hormones have been found to play a significant role in its development and severity. Ensuring the body’s hormonal balance is, therefore, essential in managing and preventing eczema flare-ups and symptom exacerbation. Furthermore, limiting stress and adhering to treatment plans recommended by healthcare providers can help manage this condition better.