Are you struggling with itchy, inflamed, and red skin? If so, you’re not alone. An astonishing 31 million people in America are living with the skin condition known as eczema. Whether you and eczema have been lifelong companions or recently diagnosed, I’m guessing you’ve probably tried numerous ointments, creams, home remedies, and medications.  

Unfortunately, many of the conventional eczema treatments only address concerns skin deep. They do not help address the underlying causes of eczema nor help you to manage this often severe skin condition. 

The good news is that several alternative treatments are available to help you address the root cause of your eczema and find long-lasting relief. Here’s an integrative physician’s guide to managing eczema.


What is Eczema?

Let’s start with the basics. Eczema, commonly known as Atopic Dermatitis, is an itchy, red, and persistent chronic skin condition. Symptoms can begin in infants and young children, but it’s not uncommon for eczema to begin during adolescence or adulthood. 

People struggling with eczema can experience patches of skin that are extremely dry and itchy, which can lead to rashes, blisters, or infections due to excessive scratching. Many people with eczema experience flare-ups when experiencing acute symptoms or side effects from the prolonged itchiness that may last days or even weeks. 


Causes and Triggers of Eczema

While the exact cause of eczema is unknown, researchers know it is actually an inflammatory condition triggered mainly by genetics and environmental factors. In some people, exposure to certain irritants or allergens triggers the immune system to produce inflammation inside the body leading to flare-ups on the skin’s surface. For others, genetics may play a factor in how the body maintains the skin’s moisture. 

Common triggers for eczema in both adults and children may include:

  • Food sensitivities 
  • Climate – lengthy exposure to dry air or extreme heat or cold
  • Underlying gut issues
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Hormonal changes
  • Laundry detergents or fabric softeners with chemical additives
  • Soap, shampoo, body wash, and facial cleansers 
  • Surface cleaners and disinfectants
  • Scented products
  • Skin infections
  • Decreased lipid levels
  • Increased bacteria on the body
  • Environmental stressors 

Attention to the more minor details will help you pinpoint your particular triggers, allowing you to begin to treat your eczema from the inside out. 


Integrative Dermatology Guide to Managing Eczema

Conventional eczema treatments offer a variety of protective creams, antibiotics, steroids, and antihistamine treatments targeted to treat eczema at the surface. But due to its nature, treating eczema goes beyond skin-deep care. Utilizing an integrative approach to managing eczema allows you to identify the root cause while helping to bolster the immune system and minimize triggers or flare-ups. 

Integrative dermatology provides a unique approach to managing eczema by blending traditional and natural medicine techniques to identify the best combination to address your skin conditions. Let’s look at four areas to explore to help holistically manage your eczema. 

Address Inflammation

Inflammation occurs when the body responds to threats, including infections, psychological, food, or bacteria. The immune system breaks down when you experience chronic inflammation, resulting in symptoms, including eczema flare-ups. So, at its core, eczema is a state of skin inflammation. 

The gut is the home of your immune system, so to address any inflammation occurring in the body, we need to identify and treat any sources of inflammation. Sources of inflammation can include yeast overgrowth, dysbiosis, gastrointestinal infections, or leaky gut. Based on your specific needs, the following can help address inflammation in the body:


Probiotics containing the L. rhamnosus and L. planetarium strains have shown to help produce more filaggrin, a protective barrier for the skin, helping to minimize the severity of several skin conditions, including eczema.  


I believe that food is medicine! 

It’s not uncommon for patients struggling with eczema to experience food allergies or sensitivities. Try removing dairy, gluten, and eggs and decreasing processed foods to reduce inflammation and allergic reactions. Instead, fill your plate with anti-inflammatory foods such as green leafy vegetables, nuts, cold-water fish, and fruit.

Supplements and Herbs

Supplements and herbs are one way that you can help strengthen the body’s immune system and decrease inflammation. Before beginning any supplements or herbs, it’s essential to understand where you may be deficient or what products will best help with your symptoms. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Vitamins A, C, D, and Fish Oil help to decrease inflammation 
  • L-Glutamine and Collagen to help soothe and repair leaky gut
  • Witch hazel, St. John’s wort, and Calendula topical ointments to soothe skin and relieve itching


Decrease Stress

Clinical studies have shown that eczema flare-ups can be associated with increased anxiety and stress. Relaxation techniques, including meditation, help decrease eczema flare-ups. Learn how to calm your mind for your skin with my 6 daily meditation tips.


Repair and Protect the Skin Barrier

People with eczema have a weaker skin barrier and skin microbiome, making their skin more vulnerable to allergens and chemicals. So, it’s important to keep your skin moisturized at all times because it is more difficult for eczema patients to retain moisture. 

There are many ways to help repair and protect your skin barrier. Here are a few of my favorites:  

Ointments and Oils

  • Safflower Oil – Ideal for those with sensitive skin, safflower oil can soothe dry skin while fighting inflammation.
  • Coconut Oil – Ideal for moisturizing and improving skin health while also reducing inflammation. Its antibacterial and antifungal properties may also help prevent skin infections common with eczema.
  • Aloe Vera – Its antimicrobial, antioxidant, wound-healing, and immune-boosting properties are all things that can help stave off or shorten eczema outbreaks.


  • Oatmeal baths – The colloidal extracts in oats are known to help improve and soothe dry, itchy skin while also providing some anti-inflammatory support.
  • Dilute Bleach baths – Diluted bleach baths reduce the need for topical steroids and antibiotics while also helping to restore the skin’s microbiome and reduce inflammation. WARNING: Never enter a bath with just bleach; always have a full tub of water and add a smidge of unscented bleach and mix well.

Read my blogs, 9 Home Remedies for Eczema and 7 Best Natural Oils for Skin, to learn more about ointments and oils helpful for eczema. 

Manuka Honey

Manuka honey’s antibacterial properties make it ideal for skin wound healing for patients with a microbiome imbalance like eczema.

Read my blog to learn more about Manuka honey.


Avoid Triggers

This one might seem obvious, but removing any active triggers or avoiding products, foods, or activities that trigger your eczema is essential for developing the necessary building blocks to help minimize inflammation in your body.


Heal Your Skin Inside and Out

Learn how your skin integrates with your mind, body, and spirit to heal your skin inside and out. Discover how integrative dermatology can help you manage your eczema and give you clear skin using my SkinClock Method.

Limited spots are available. 

Join my waitlist today and start your journey to healthy, glowing skin.



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