​Hard Water and Eczema

​Hard Water and Eczema

Posted by Elizabeth Scott on 11th Jun 2017

Can the type of water used to bathe in affect the skin barrier and aggravate eczema? A 2016 study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology found a higher level of risk for developing eczema in infancy when exposed to higher levels of calcium carbonate and chlorine. Hard water contains minerals; specifically, calcium, magnesium, and iron, which can dry your skin, and trigger eczema. There are some things that can help if you have hard water and eczema. 

Tips for managing eczema and bathing with hard water:

  • Install a shower water filter to remove chlorine and minerals.
  • Look for filters with NSF certification. NSF International is an accredited, independent third-party certification body that tests and certifies products to verify they meet public health and safety standards.
  • Bathe with an alcohol free and non-drying cleanser.
  • After bathing immediately pat the skin dry and apply an emollient to damp skin.
  • Reapply an emollient or alcohol free moisturizer to dry areas throughout the day.
  • Talk with your doctor about using wet wrap therapy for areas of itching and dry skin. Applying a wet wrap therapy sleeve on arms or legs can be a quick way to relieve itching and add moisture.

For more information on NSF certified water filters please visit: http://info.nsf.org/Certified/DWTU/Listings.asp?ProductType=Shower+Filter

Resources:

Association between domestic water hardness, chlorine, and atopic dermatitis risk in early life: A population-based cross-sectional study: http://www.jacionline.org/article/S0091-6749(16)30187-7/abstract

Wet Wrap Therapy for Children’s Eczema: http://www.the-dermatologist.com/node/3072

Wet Wrap Therapy in Children with Moderate to Severe Atopic Dermatitis in a Multidisciplinary Treatment Program: http://www.jaci-inpractice.org/article/S2213-2198(14)00180-9/fulltext