Eczema, stress and how Chinese Medicine can help

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In the UK, one in five children and one in twelve adults have eczema. Typical symptoms include inflammation, soreness and itching. Stress is widely recognised to be a key culprit for atopic eczema. There are three main reasons as to why. Firstly the skin is the largest excretory organ of the body. Stress creates toxicity, inflammation and heat in the body which the body tries to eliminate via this excretory function. Secondly when under stress the body increases inflammation in the skin as the body moves to protect it. Thirdly, during periods of stress the body diverts blood flow away from the peripheral organs including the skin, to provide muscles with additional energy. This limits oxygen and nourishment to the skin cells and waste product removal from them. The thickened and dry skin is a sign of blood deficiency, as blood is needed to nourish the skin. This combination means that the skin is weakened at a time when it is required to work at its hardest. The Chinese approach is to treat the internal root cause of illness as well as just the symptoms. It’s this difference which makes Chinese medicine so effective. Stress affects people in different ways because we all have different imbalances and weaknesses. Chinese Medicine attributes eczema to weakness in the lungs and/or excess heat in the body. Skin assists the lungs in supporting the body. So when our lungs are overwhelmed by the stress response, our skin is also impacted. According to Chinese Medicine, stress and lifestyle can both contribute to inflammation, or heat in the body, causing the symptoms of redness and broken itchy skin. Chinese Medicine believes that heat also obstructs the flow of blood to the skin. Stress creates heat in the heart, because an increased heart rate means it has to work harder. A hyperactive heart may cause heat in the blood. This heat will try to escape via the skin, causing skin problems like eczema or rosacea. Although the problem is multi-layered, the solution itself is surprisingly simple. Rebalance your natural circulation process, clear the heat, support your lungs and manage your stress response. In Chinese Medicine we believe this in turn will help reduce inflammation, negating the underlying need to expel it through the skin. The Hayo’u Method is based on ancient Chinese breathing and bodywork techniques – both scientifically proven to be effective in reducing stress and supporting the body. The Hayo’u Method works for eczema because it: *manages stress *engages your parasympathetic nervous system *regulates blood flow *reduces heat in the body *strengthens the lungs *supports the skin *calms the heart *strengthens the digestive system. Beauty Restorer Ritual Firstly we need to clear the eczema at surface level, gently encouraging circulation and reducing that inflammation is going to help. Use a jade massage tool, such as our Beauty Restorer™. Studies has shown jade to naturally emit far infrared rays, deep enough to penetrate human skin. Far Infrared rays are invisible waves of energy that have the ability to penetrate all layers of the human physical body, including tissues, muscles and bone. FIR slightly elevates the surface temperature of the body. When we slightly induce a very small temperature increase, we can enhance our body’s functioning on multiple levels. When your cells reproduce, they can repair anything that was damaged in your body. But when additional infrared rays come in contact with jade — especially when the jade is heated — the health benefits are exemplified. When jade absorbs FIR, it emits the rays continuously. Even the natural heat from your skin warms jade sufficiently to do this. The key is to very gently press-hold on the area. Hold one side to the skin, then once the jade has warmed up keep it there then turn it over and use the other side. Deep breathing will support the lungs which is at the root of excema. Saturating the body with oxygen will engage the rest phase of your nervous system to slow the release of the stress hormone cortisol. The exhale technique at the start of the exercise was traditionally used to physically expel heat in the lungs via the breath, thus reducing the need to push it out through the skin. At the start of this article we made the link between emotional stress and eczema flare-ups. Your brain is directly connected to your skin via nerve fibres. If the brain becomes overstimulated, the skin becomes overstimulated, causing an itchy rash to appear. So use a simple breathing technique to calm your brain and see if it helps calm your skin. It works to turns off your fight or flight reflex and stimulate the Vagus nerve, which connects your brain and your stomach. This simple one minute technique assists your circulation, heart, lungs and general immunity. It helps to strengthen your digestion and also improve your flow of Qi (energy) and blood around the body – which in turn helps the skin. Try my Reset Ritual. Shake all over for 20 seconds, then make a loose fist and drum lightly all over your body. Finally, let your arms hang at your sides and then twist from side to side, letting your arms swing and gently hit your kidneys at your back. This technique directly affects the body’s energy channels, which can help to drain excess heat from the skin.

What You'll Need

  • Jade Gua sha massage tool

What You'll Do

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