Despite their tiny size, bacteria play an important role in eczema and in the overall health of the skin. Beyond the frequent skin infections associated with severe eczema, there is the even more important idea that colonizing bacteria residing on the skin may also directly drive inflammation. Studies have found that in eczema skin, the balance of bacteria on the skin is highly abnormal, with a predominance of “bad” bacteria such as staphylococcus (staph).
With more research, evidence shows us that the microbiome plays a major role in our health, immunity, and corresponding susceptibility to disease. Although we tend to associate gut microbes with healthy digestion and vitamin synthesis, these bacteria play an important role in immune health as well. Not to mention, we are learning more that our gut microbes also influence our skin health – our first line of defense against pathogens and infection.
Traditional treatments for eczema use bleach baths and antibiotics, which not only kill bad bacteria but also kill the beneficial microbes that we’re now learning can actually help our skin. So, in the case of diseases with an imbalance in microorganisms particularly atopic dermatitis (eczema), topical probiotics present an effective alternative to strictly antibacterial products or treatments.
A potential lead in reducing the amount of staph bacteria on the skin is to regularly apply topical probiotics. While it has been known that probiotic supplementation taken orally has been found effective in treating acne and other inflammatory skin conditions, recent discoveries show that application of topical probiotics (lotion formulated with beneficial bacteria) protected against skin infections by destroying harmful bacteria on the skin.
Those with eczema will need to continue applying the topical probiotics for several weeks because their bodies do not naturally promote the growth of these beneficial bacteria. Whether live or inactive, probiotics applied to the skin can help train the immune system and after some time the body will begin to naturally create an environment on the skin that allows the good bacteria to thrive, reduce the overgrowth of the bad bacteria and thus bring a balance back to the skin and to a healthy state.
Here are the top safe and effective topical probiotics for eczema. Be sure to follow directions on the product and discontinue use if there are any adverse effects.
All natural topical probiotic spray for diaper rash, cradle cap, eczema, rosacea, hand-foot-mouth, bug/ant bites, sores, cuts, acne and other skin irritations. It also works as a barrier against germs, bacteria and fungal. The spray contains 150 million CFU’s (colony forming units) of Bacillus Coagulans, a bacteria strain which has been found to help improve skin and to build a stronger gut and immune system.
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Balm AP+ Body Cream
The Lipikar products address the needs of dry, extra dry, and eczema prone skin with formulas that are paraben-free, fragrance-free, and allergy-tested. This moisturizer replenishes skin’s essential lipids and contains prebiotic thermal water and a bacteria called Vitreoscilla Filliformis which lives in Thermal springs. Tubingen University did some trials on this bacteria which had good results for eczema.
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Eczema
La Roche-Posay Lipikar Eczema Cream Soothing Relief Cream for Eczema-Prone Body, Hands and Face with Colloidal Oatmeal. This cream also containing pre-biotics and probiotics, helps soothe itchy skin and doesn’t sting on red inflamed skin.
Eau Thermale Avène Xeracalm Balm
This lipid-replenishing cream directly targets itching, redness and irritation for skin prone to atopic dermatitis and eczema. Formulated without any preservatives, parabens or fragrances. This moisturizer contains a thermal spring bacteria called Aquaphilus Dolomiae. Over 2,800 patients each year visit the Avène Dermatological Hydrotherapy Center to treat skin conditions including rosacea, psoriasis and eczema with the use of treatments and products formulated with Avène Thermal Spring Water.
Babytime Episencial Soothing Cream
All natural scent-free formula with calendula, raspberry butter, probiotics and neem oil can be used to soothe eczema, dermatitis, cradle cap, baby acne or diaper rash. This soothing cream contains Lactobacillus Ferment which has been frequently used as a natural antimicrobial in the production of skin care, hair care and cosmetic formulations. In addition to its application as a natural antimicrobial, Lactobacillus Ferment also helps to condition the skin.