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  • Writer's picturechelseakimh

A Closer Look at Bleach Baths, a common treatment for eczema

What are bleach baths?

A bleach bath is unique because it kills bacteria, reduces inflammation, and moisturizes your skin all in the same treatment. A study showed that children with eczema who took regular bleach baths were less likely to develop a secondary bacterial infection as a side effect. The baths also decreased the severity of symptoms for children in the same study.

Here are steps to prep a bleach bath:

  • A standard bathtub, which contains 40 gallons of water, will only need a 1/2 cup of bleach to be an effective bleach bath.

  • Make sure to adjust the amount for the amount of water in your bathtub. Use household bleach, not a concentrated formula.

  • A bleach bath should only last 10 minutes. Rinse your skin completely with warm water. Hot water can dry out your skin and aggravate eczema.

  • Pat your skin dry gently with a towel. Use a hypoallergenic lotion to soothe skin and lock in moisture after a bleach bath.

  • Take a bleach bath up to three times per week to treat your eczema.

Some Considerations:

  • Avoid bleach baths if you have asthma. Exposure to the smell of bleach can trigger an asthma symptom flare-up. Make sure that your bleach bath happens in a bathroom where there is a window or proper ventilation.

  • If you’re using medications or cosmetics that make your skin thin and susceptible to tearing, such as anti-aging retinol treatments, topical corticosteroids, or prescription blood thinners, you should proceed with caution before taking a bleach bath.

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