Why I Hate Fall

Fall is beautiful.  There’s no getting around that.  The turning leaves are nice.  The crisp fall air is refreshing.

But, I still hate fall for one simple reason:

My skin.

I have eczema.  I’ve had noticeable symptoms for a few years now, and they seem to pick up in intensity in the fall.  It will last throughout the winter, but for some reason, when it first hits in fall, it is like a bullet.

I have a spot on my face and also around my eyes that flares up.  I also get it on my hands (more my right hand than my left), and along my wrists and the tops of my elbows.

It itches like crazy, and if the areas around my face get bad, it’s noticeable enough that I get self-conscious.  It also really sucks because while the fall usually kicks in all of the areas at once, what happens after that is that one or two areas will clear up but another area will flare up, so until spring I’ve always got a rash and itch going on somewhere.  *sigh*

I have found a few things that seem to help, though they never really make it fully ‘go away’.

I use Aveeno lotion, which seems to work best for moisturizing without further irritating the skin.  Aveeno works best because it does not contain parabens, a chemical that is added to just about all skin and hair care products as a cheap preservative.  It’s also irritating to many (like me) with sensitive skin.

I have topical medication that I use.  This seems to help though it takes a few days to really kick in, and I don’t like to use it preventatively, so there’s always that window.  Often, it’ll work, I’ll stop using it, and I’ll get another flare-up again.  Other times, it can work for weeks.  Two problems: It’s expensive and my insurance company will require that I go try other treatments before authorizing a prescription.

Sleeping. I’ve found that the more tired I get, the more my body seems to be prone.  This is tough but I’ve been trying to add more hours of sleep to my schedule.

Hydration. I’ve found that keeping my skin moist not just from the outside (moisturizer) but also from the inside (by drinking water) seems to help.

We also switched our laundry detergent to the Kirkland brand that is dye-free and supposedly for sensitive skin.  We’d previously gotten their ‘regular’ stuff.  This will take a while to kick in, but maybe this will help?

Reducing the time and temperature of my shower.  As the weather cools and you wake up to a colder house, it’s so tempting to take a long, hot shower.  Unfortunately, this dries out your skin, so it’s best to resist temptation and take cooler, shorter showers.  I know that if I turn down the temperature, making it shorter won’t be a problem as I won’t want to be in there as long!

Stress.  I find that when I’m overworked or upset, I can almost feel it kick in.  Reducing stress is tough with a job with frequent deadlines plus the daily grind with two toddlers, but still something to try to keep mindful of.

Chances are as you read this, I itch.  And that is why I hate fall.

17 thoughts on “Why I Hate Fall”

  1. Living in the dry Colorado air my skin gets super dry and unless I am persistant about lotion my hands will crack and bleed in the winter. I can’t even image what you go through with the itchy feeling. Has your doctor told you if there is anything also you can do to treat the problem?

    • I’ve asked my family doctor and have been to two dermatologists as well. All have given the same diagnosis and the biggest things that they’ve done is recommend the medicine I use as well as staying moisturized. It’s likely something I’ll have to live with.

    • I agree. I usually start noticing this around the beginning of August, as it will stop being light when I wake up. So, by October, I’m already well past the acceptance stage of less light 🙂

  2. My wife and several of my kids suffer with the same thing, but usually deal with it specifically in the summer for some reason. I can empathize as they’re usually just wanting it to go away and have found very few things that will actually work and can make it better.

    • I can still get some in summer but I find it more manageable and can be brought under control pretty quickly. When it strikes in fall or winter, it seems to hit with a bigger vengeance.

  3. A family friend had it particularly bad and I remember they loved the Aveeno lotion. It is actually the brand I typically use as I have fairly sensitive skin. In the winter, my legs get so dried out and other lotions can make them feel like they are burning.

    • I did go through a number of different ones and this one seems the best. We just stocked up on it from Costco as they had a coupon in last months coupon book.

  4. Very sorry to hear that. I can imagine how irritating it is.

    I would suggest that you look at trying Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. You can cook with it to help from the inside and you can also put it on your skin and in your hair to help with all the dryness. Do some research online. It truly is an amazing product.

    • I have heard that as well. Definitely something to consider. If it’s good enough for Rachel Ray…*lol*

  5. Eucerin lotion is really good for flare ups. It’s a little greasy but it works.

    And yes, the dye free laundry detergent will help. So will soap for sensitive skin and a humidifier.

    Can you tell we have skin issues in our family?

    • I used to use Eucerin until I discovered that sometime in the last 2-3 years, they started adding parabens to their lotion, which my first dermatolgist said I had a sensitivity too (and I found through some research on eczema that parabens should generally be avoided whenever possible). Check the ingredient list, any ingredient that contains ‘paraben’ automatically takes it off the list for me.

  6. Guess you kinda have a love/hate thing going on with the Fall. Can’t say I blame you in this case. Hopefully the lotion eases things for you. Don’t think I know anyone with eczema.

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