November is Eczema Awareness Month and the Eczema Society of Canada (ESC) is asking Canadians to “live the itch” of atopic dermatitis (AD), commonly known as eczema, to help raise awareness around this burdensome symptom.
The itch of AD is frequently rated as the most bothersome symptom of the condition, and intense itch can bother eczema sufferers day and night. According to ESC’s recent survey report Itch in Atopic Dermatitis, 44% of adults with severe AD feel itchy all the time. The report highlighted how itch impacts sleep, work, and relationships for both adults and children who live with the condition.
ESC’s itch report also revealed:
- 46% of adults with moderate or severe AD describe their itch as debilitating
- 87% of adults with severe AD have scars or marks on their skin due to scratching
- 76% of children with moderate or severe AD are woken from sleep due to their itch
To raise awareness, ESC invited their Eczema Ambassadors – a group of dedicated volunteers who live with moderate and severe forms of AD — to challenge their friends and family to “live the itch” of AD for 24 hours. Participants were asked to set an alarm to sound off once an hour for 24 hours to replicate the interruption of itch. They would experience the frustration and disruption throughout their day and even overnight; the challenge aimed to provide a small glimpse of what it is like to live with the condition.
ESC Eczema Ambassador Allie challenged her family to take the itch challenge. She shared with ESC: “Eczema runs in my family, and the challenge made us all stop and think about how itch impacts our lives. The Live the Itch Challenge is a great way for people to understand the persistence of the itch from eczema and the interruptions itch causes to daily life.”
Allie added: “While I wouldn’t wish feeling itchy on anyone, I’d like people to understand how frequent and bothersome itch can be. I hope that by participating in this challenge and having these conversations, we can raise awareness around AD and why sufferers deserve better care and understanding.”
To follow the “Live the itch” challenge, or to participate follow @EczemaSocietyofCanada and use the hashtag #Livetheitch. To learn more about the itch survey visit www.eczemahelp.ca/itch.
About Atopic Dermatitis
AD is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition. It is characterized by periods of dry, itchy, inflamed skin that can crack, ooze, and bleed. These periods of worsening symptoms are known as flares. It is estimated that 11% of children and 7% of adults live with AD.
About the Eczema Society of Canada:
The Eczema Society of Canada is a registered Canadian charity dedicated to improving the lives of Canadians living with eczema. Its mandate is to provide education, support, awareness, advocacy, and research. To learn more, visit www.eczemahelp.ca.
SOURCE Eczema Society of Canada