Should You Double-Mask?

Should You Double-Mask?

In the fight against the highly transmissible omicron variant, wearing two masks seems to provide better protection than one. But if the mask you're wearing fits tightly and has multiple layers, double-masking may not be "necessary." Here's why.
6 Tips to Better Protect Your Skin During A Workout

6 Tips to Better Protect Your Skin During A Workout

Although some skin conditions, such as rosacea, eczema, and psoriasis, can be exacerbated by physical activities, we believe there's no reason for you not to get moving. 
6 Signs You Have Sensitive Skin

6 Signs You Have Sensitive Skin

More than just the irritation, there lies a number of factors that may tell that you have sensitive skin. Here are the 6 identifying signs that you may have sensitive skin.

6 Common Skin Irritations in Infants You Should Be Aware Of

6 Common Skin Irritations in Infants You Should Be Aware Of

As COVID-19 continues to force families indoors, it is now crucial for parents to discern skin conditions affecting their children. In celebration of the National Child Health Day, Cottonique rounded up 6 common skin irritations in infants that you should be aware of. 

October 05, 2020 — Nathan Mariano
Self-Care: 5 Helpful Tips For People With Eczema

Self-Care: 5 Helpful Tips For People With Eczema

With so many things happening around us all at once, we often forget to remind ourselves that self-care, even with eczema, remains an essential part of our lives. To help you check your physical and emotional barometer this Self-Care Awareness Month, we have put down 6 self-care tips to possibly help alleviate the agony of people with eczema. 

Debunking misconceptions about psoriasis

Debunking misconceptions about psoriasis

As we give facts about psoriasis and debunk various misconceptions, we should also take advantage of the yearly observance to put an end to confusion and misunderstandings. We might not heal people with psoriasis yet, but we can certainly cure misinformation. 

August 28, 2020 — Nathan Mariano
Eyelid Dermatitis: What to Do When Itch Strikes

Eyelid Dermatitis: What to Do When Itch Strikes

There are several things that can cause irritated eyelids, including eczema, which causes dry itchy skin, a rash, and other symptoms. Unfortunately, no part of your skin is eczema-immune. Here’s what to do when your eczema decides to show up on your eyelids:

Chronic Itching May Indicate Other Health Issues

Chronic Itching May Indicate Other Health Issues

Many people tend to ignore medical issues until they progress into something serious. Take for example, a persistently itchy skin. It’s only a minor thing when you think about it, but there could be worse underlying medical causes that should be attended to as soon as possible to reduce damage.

What Your Itchy Skin Reveals About Your Health: Connection Between Kidney and Skin Conditions

What Your Itchy Skin Reveals About Your Health: Connection Between Kidney and Skin Conditions

There are things that the body tells us that is more than skin deep. One primary example is intense itching all over the body which often occurs when there is already a problem with our kidney or liver. Those who manifest skin disorders such as extreme itchiness almost always precipitate renal failures that are attributed to late stage kidney problems.

Recent medical studies reveal that more than 40% of dialysis patients suffered from moderate to extreme renal itch. “The itch is so intense that people wake up in the middle of the night scratching,” said Jahmene Johnson, a medical doctor at the New York Presbyterian Hospital.

December 22, 2018 — Admin Cottonique
Think You Got the Allergies? Get an Allergy Test First!

Think You Got the Allergies? Get an Allergy Test First!

 

The first important step in battling allergies is finding out what you’re allergic to. Upon the onset of allergy symptoms, head your way to a physician or allergist to identify what triggered the reaction. Allergy Skin Testing is a safe and easy way for them to find out and confirm the allergens that caused the allergic reaction, and it can be performed on both children and adults.

Common allergy symptoms that may need you to get an allergy skin testing include: Itchiness in the eyes, nose, throat, and skin, runny nose, watery eyes, blocked sinuses, coughing, sneezing, hives, eczema, nasal congestion, and anaphylaxis in severe cases.

Through allergy testing, you will be able to find out what particular substances you may be allergic to. Allergens that are used in allergy skin tests include dust mites, pollen, pet dander and hair, insect venom, natural rubber latex, food components, and medications.

There are three kinds of allergy testing performed:

Scratch Test or also known as a prick or puncture test, wherein your doctor will place a drop of various allergens, usually on the forearm or back. A sterile needle is used to prick the skin to introduce the allergen. A reaction or lack thereof will determine if you’re allergic to the substance.

Intradermal Skin Test is similar to the scratch test but instead of pricking the skin, the allergen is injected under the skin using a syringe. Your skin’s reaction to it will determine if you’re allergic to it or not. This method is usually used to test insect venom and medication allergies.

Skin testing results are immediately evaluated as the reactions usually appear within minutes after the test is administered. It is also important to not take any medication before the test as it may interfere with the results.

Is skin testing safe? There may be a mild irritation caused by a positive allergic reaction but it fully safe when done correctly.

When identification of allergens via skin testing is not possible due to several reasons like the patient is suffering a severe skin condition or the patient is under medication -- an Allergy Blood Test can be used instead. 

A blood sample is taken and sent to the lab for testing with various allergens. Blood tests may take a few days before results can be derived and it also costs more than skin tests.

A known allergy blood test is the allergen-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) blood test. An allergic reaction occurs when the immune system is subjected to allergens and overreacts to it. The body perceives allergens as a threat and signals the need for protection to our immune system, therefore producing antibodies called immunoglobulin E.

Your test results will identify your allergens so you will know what to avoid in the future. These tests are important for easy allergy management when you are exposed to allergens.

February 16, 2016 — Admin Cottonique

How to Manage “The Itch” from Topical Steroid Withdrawal

Topical steroids are prescribed medication for a wide range of skin condition. They simulate natural hormones in the body and provide “anti-inflammatory” action, mainly to reduce redness, swelling and irritation. These symptoms are very common to eczema and to keep it at bay, doctors are lead to increase the use of topical steroids and of higher potency. Higher dosage and usage will cause Topical Steroid Addiction and the way to recover from it is to undergo withdrawal.

 

Just like any other withdrawal treatments, there are symptoms experienced such as:  red, burning skin, rashes, swelling, flaking, oozing blisters, enlarged lymph nodes, sleep difficulty and systemic itchiness to name a few. These symptoms fall under what they call the “Red Skin Syndrome (RSS)”.

 

 

So how do people deal with “The Itch”? Here are some tips on managing it:

  1. Maintain Control: Take note of your allergens and irritants, and try to eliminate all possible causes that can trigger the itch. Keep in mind that the more you scratch, the itchiniess is not actually alleviated but rather causes the release of histamine which makes you want to scratch more.
  2. Practice Mindful Scratching: Have the mindset to avoid scratching a habit. This might be difficult at first especially when the itch is persistent, but building a habit is a gradual process. Have a friend that will constantly remind you on this and to watch out for you whenever you are instinctively scratching more than you should.
  3. Distract Yourself: Avert your thoughts from the discomfort and itchiness and do something that keeps your hand busy to stop yourself from scratching.
  4. Apply Temperature: Temperature changes can facilitate comfort. Put an ice pack, rinse in cold water or take a cold bath can lessen the itch on the spot. Others can find warm temperature comforting as well but be careful not to apply it too hot.
  5. Wear Itch-free Garments: Your daily wear plays a great role in managing itchiness from Topical Steroid Withdrawal, hence why Cottonique was made. Clothing yourself in an all-natural, chemical-free, 100% cotton material will greatly improve RSS symptoms and aid in reducing itchiness. Use materials that are hypoallergenic and both latex- and spandex-free.

 

These are all helpful tips in managing the symptoms of Topical Steroid Withdrawal, however, always keep in mind to consult your doctor before starting your topical steroid withdrawal and work together on your journey of being itch-free!

 

Image source

June 15, 2015 — Admin Cottonique

How Do I Know if I Have Eczema, and Not Something Else?

The truth of the matter is, eczema has a lot of overlapping symptoms with other skin problems. The most common signs - dry, itchy skin; swollen reddish patches; and rashes - are the same with other conditions, like seborrhoeic dermatitis or psoriasis. Other times, it could just be an allergic reaction to something in your environment, and therefore remain relatively harmless. While you'll only know for sure whether or not you have eczema after a visit to the dermatologist, here are a few ways to make sure that a trip to the doctor is even necessary at all:

Check the risk factors

Like all conditions, there are certain risk factors that increase the likelihood of symptoms being connected to eczema. The more the following factors apply to you, the greater the chance is that you have eczema:

1. Your parents have it

Eczema factors into our genetics, and if one or both of your parents have it, there's a chance that you've "inherited" the condition from them. Even if your parents don't have it, there's still a small chance that you're predisposed towards eczema if other relatives have the disorder.

2. You're female
According to this 2009 study about eczema prevalence in children, the condition was more common in girls than in boys. Although further research is required to explain why this seems to be the case, the trend is supported by other studies.

3. Asthma and hay fever run in the family

There's also a higher prevalence of eczema in families with members suffering from asthma or seasonal allergies. It doesn't necessarily have to be a parent with the condition; brothers, sisters, and even cousins with asthma may mean a larger chance of you having eczema.

4. Latex allergies

Although the symptoms you experience may be an allergic reaction to the proteins of latex, it appears that eczema is more common among individuals with this sensitivity. If you experience any adverse reactions to latex, get yourself tested for eczema as well as the allergy itself.

 

It acts up in the more common spots

The symptoms of eczema occur most often in specific spots; the back of the knee and the outward-facing side of your elbow. This is one of the ways the condition is most easily differentiated from psoriasis, and should be a tell-tale sign that you have eczema. 

 

Your environment brings out the symptoms

Your surroundings might be telling you more than you think. Eczema is more common in urban areas with lower humidity levels, so try to see if leaving these places helps in dealing with the symptoms. Eczema symptoms also tend to flare up during the winter. Significant temperature changes - such as moving into a very cold room after spending an afternoon in the summer heat - might also exacerbate the effects.

 

If any of the above apply to you, there's a chance that the itching and rashes you experience are symptoms of eczema. Head on to your dermatologist to get yourself checked, and try adjusting your lifestyle accordingly. Wearing chemical-free, 100% organic cotton clothing is always a good start.

 

Image from http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Physical_Exam_-_Stethoscope.jpg

November 13, 2014 — Admin Cottonique