Last month when I developed hives and then a rash during the time when COVID visited our home, some of the people that I turned to for advice (read: highly educated family members) told me “it must be something else.”
They didn’t trust my intuition that my skin issues were related to COVID.
One night, when I couldn’t sleep due to uncomfortable itching, I got up and soaked in the bathtub (a place where the itching would be much more comfortable) and searched some videos on YouTube. I don’t normally do this kind of visiting to YouTube rabbit holes, so you can imagine that I was pretty desperate.
I found this presentation by Suzanne Demeester, MD, which allowed me to not feel as alone and crazy.
I was really upset that no one believed me, so I brought it up in a session with my therapist. She immediately sent me a link to this article. (Warning: pictures in there of skin rashes and conditions are pretty gross!).
I won’t share pictures of my own skin breakout, which included my arms, legs, and torso, basically everywhere except my face and feet.
The takeaway is that having a skin reaction means that the infection is systemic. Yes, widespread. The skin is the largest organ in the body and one of the most important pathways to detoxify. I’ll be writing more later about the importance of detoxification in general for immunity and optimal energy.
So what did I do to help manage my very uncomfortable skin reactions?
Disclaimer: What I’m writing here is for information only, and no part of its contents should be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, recommendation, or endorsement by the author. You should always ask your physician or healthcare provider for her recommendation before starting any new health-related activity.
First, I worked on managing my levels of histamine. My skin reaction actually started with hives, and it was actually a little scary. I didn’t want to take an antihistamine like Benedryl (a long story I won’t get into here, but I feel that detoxing from Benedryl is part of my own healing journey). So what are some natural things I can take to manage histamine levels? Quercetin, Vitamin C, and this wonderful product called HistaAid by Quicksilver Scientific. I used liposomal delivery for all of these products. If liposomal delivery doesn’t ring a bell for you, don’t worry, as I’ll be blogging soon about this wonderful method to get nutrients into the cells of the body.
There is another great product by Biotics Research that naturally helps to manage histamine levels, called HistoPlex. It’s got a totally different set of ingredients that are very different from the liposomals I’ve listed above, and I found that this product helped me feel much more comfortable.
Yes, I want to be comfortable in my skin!
But I had this sense that there was some icky stuff that wanted to come out. (As mentioned above, the skin is the largest organ of the body and responsible for much of the detoxification process). So I turned to some favorite products from Premier Research Labs that really turned my bathroom into a spa-like environment. I started doing “mudpacks” (stirring up their special mud and mixing it with a mineral mix, sometimes adding Aloe) and smearing this paste all over my body. I felt like I did when I visited the Dead Sea in the mid-’90s and did a full-body mud packing session in the Middle Eastern sun. After allowing the mud to “suck out” any nasties that were ready to leave through the skin, I hopped in the bath and soaked in a cleansing bath.
Then it was time to hydrate with healing ointments. I rotated what I used based on what was calling me. Sometimes it was a super-hydrating oil like Neem or Copal oil (thank you, Four Visions market!). Sometimes I would pull out my Calendula ointment, which is based on homeopathy, or sometimes I would use an ointment that utilizes herbs and Chinese Medicine.
I’m very open to ancient healing wisdom (like Chinese Medicine and Homeopathy), and there are also many aids that come from indigenous tribes. I have worked and lived in countries all over South America, Central America, and Mexico. I can’t count the number of ailments healed by my “mama” (the woman of the house where I was staying) going into the kitchen and brewing me a special tea to drink. For my skin this time with COVID, I was lucky to have on hand some “Planta Ortiga” tincture from the amazing folks at Four Visions Markets.
As my skin healed, new skin wanted to form (and dead skin wanted to be cleared away). There were times when I felt like I was molting. I assisted the process by using a yummy salt scrub in the bathtub, which felt amazing (talk about scratching that itch!) but also burned a little when I would put my fresh exfoliated skin back in hot water. Woo wee!
Dry skin brushing (BEFORE the bath or shower) also kept my skin exfoliated, and this process of brushing towards the heart also supports the lymphatic system. This drainage system is essential in detoxifying the body, and we can assist that process through dry brushing as well as circulation-promoting activities such as walking, standing on a vibrating plate, or jumping on a trampoline. For me, skin brushing just seemed the most self-caring and gentle.
I hope this has been an interesting discovery process about the importance of taking care of your skin. To listen to an interview I did with a Naturopath about the detoxification process (with the skin being an important part of our discussion), please listen to my discussion with my friend Dr. Heather Wdowin.
May you be MOST comfortable in your skin! 🙂 For more information, see this series of blog posts:
- Let Food Be Thy Medicine
- Stay Well Hydrated
- Sleep is the Best Medicine
- Start or Boost your Spiritual Practice
- Ask for Support for Mental Wellness
- Take Care of Your Skin (this post)
- Don’t Fear a Fever
- Take Time for Professional Development
- Keep it Out of Your Lungs