How to tell if it’s a Healing Crisis for Eczema

is this a healing crisis for eczema

A healing crisis for eczema is a good thing. Once you get past the initial discomfort, you will feel much better and more vibrant. Whenever I let my two eczema warriors embark on some eczema remedy, like some targeted diet, or homeopathy, etc., I would brace them, and myself, for a healing crisis. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t. It all depends on the state of the body.

What is a healing crisis

A healing crisis is a cleansing, or detox action undertaken by the body when the conditions are right. When we stimulate the body to purge out old toxins that have accumulated over the years, from polluted air and water, food additives, chemicals from personal care products, etc. a healing crisis can occur.

Or when there is a die-off effect of bacteria, viruses, or other pathogens due to whatever reasons, like due to usage of antibiotic, or probiotic, or even foods with antimicrobial effects, etc., then a healing crisis can possibly take place too.

During a healing crisis, you will most likely feel worse than before you embarked on the remedy. This is because there is a sudden surge of undesirable substances circulating in your system, meant to be eliminated. This also means that there is detoxification and cleansing taking place on a deep level. This website also has some information on healing crisis:

You may have experienced this too

Back in those days when I was holding a stressful job, I would come down with a cold every single weekend. Yes, every. Single. Weekend. Without fail. I would start to get the sneezes and runny nose on Friday night, and on Saturday morning, it would come on full blast, the symptoms of the common cold. I always lamented that I could never enjoy my weekends.

Now looking back, I have come to realise that those were actually detox reactions, a sort of weekly healing crisis for me. Over the work week, I was in a heightened state of fight or flight, with adrenaline pumping, and ready to take on any challenge. The body had no resources left for healing or detoxification.

But once I let my guard down over the weekend, I had some remaining energy and resources to purge out whatever toxins, chemicals, bacteria, pathogens and other bad stuff that had accumulated over the week. I never did notice how much good it did me, but now I can see it. Come Monday morning, I would be energised and anticipating the new week ahead.

It was not a contagious kind of flu or cold, I knew it as I did not experience the extreme exhaustion or fever that would accompany my symptoms of an infection. No matter how much I sneezed, I would not spread this to the people around me. I was just my miserable self for half to one day. Subsequently, things would go back to normal.

Healing crisis for eczema occurs when the conditions are right

So similarly, for a healing crisis for eczema to occur, we must set the right conditions. Flood the body with essential minerals, vitamins and nutrients so as to push it in the right direction to heal itself. When there are more resources than what is needed for basic survival, the body can start to repair its damaged parts, as well as get on with some housekeeping.

For eczema warriors, the main elimination pathways, like liver and kidneys, were most likely not in optimum health to begin with. These would be strained even more during a healing crisis, when there is more garbage circulating in the system, waiting to be expelled. So for the eczema-prone person, the skin, which is our largest organ, and non-vital to survival, is the way through which these waste substances will exit.

The itch may get more intense, or some people may feel some internal heat. Rashes may show up more. On the whole, a healing crisis may display as worsening symptoms of eczema.

Symptoms of a healing crisis

healing crisis for eczema sluggishness

Different people will get different symptoms, with varying intensity and duration. It all depends on the individual’s state of health, and how potent the remedy is. It is very common for people to experience some of the unpleasant side effects of healing crisis listed below, before feeling better.

  • worsening of skin condition (rashes, itch, oozing, pimples erupting, etc.)
  • fatigue and sluggishness
  • headache
  • sweating or chills
  • cold-like symptoms (sneezing, congestion, sinus irritation)
  • mood swings and irritability
  • low grade fever
  • aches and sores
  • low blood pressure

A healing crisis can last anywhere between a few (2 to 3) days to a couple of (1 to 2) weeks. If your body was in a bad state to start with, then the healing crisis may last more than a few days.

Or if you are undergoing topical steroid withdrawal (tsw), which is an entirely different monster altogether, the healing crisis can be a long-drawn process, over months or a few years, and the flares would come and go. But be assured that healing is taking place, despite the uncomfortable, and at times even intolerable effects of tsw.

What can I do during a healing crisis?

If possible, try not to mask or suppress the detox symptoms of a healing crisis, including taking antihistamines, which can prolong the healing process. Some ways of easing through the healing crisis include:

  1. Drink lots of filtered, purified water to help flush out the toxins and chemicals more effectively. Lemon water can help.
  2. Take supplements that can support detox and elimination functions, especially that of the liver.
  3. Stay away from a high protein diet. You need your protein to rebuild cells, but you don’t need it in excessive amounts.
  4. Creams or balms for the skin, that are made of all natural ingredients (make sure you are not allergic or sensitive to those) can ease the discomfort of increased itching and rashes.
  5. Strategies that can prevent or treat infection of open wounds from scratching, for instance, a garlic bath.
  6. Other baths that help with detox (apple cider vinegar bath) and calming the skin (ginger bath).
  7. Get lots of rest and relaxation – meditate, get a massage, listen to soothing music, use essential oils, etc. whatever technique that can improve your sleep and keep stress to a minimum.

You can find more strategies to deal with a healing crisis at

What if it is not a healing crisis?

With a healing crisis, you will likely feel worse before feeling better. But it is often difficult to determine if that stage of feeling worse is part of a healing crisis or something else, like a sensitive reaction to some food or other allergens.

If you had embarked on some eczema remedy, and you were expecting some form of healing crisis, then hold on to the faith and trudge on. In time, you should feel more energised, more spirited, with improvement in mental and emotional well-being before the physical discomfort eases up.

But if you are feeling down-and-out all the way, with no letting up of symptoms after weeks have passed, then it may be worth removing the health program or remedy, to see if you could be reacting to some ingredients used in there. I have experienced this before, with my two eczema warriors.

When I started giving them berries on a daily basis, like strawberries, blueberries, black berries, etc., it was obvious that they flared up. Knowing how potent berries are, in their antioxidant properties, I firmly believed they were going through a healing crisis. So we followed this routine in their diet, for two whole months, I pressed on and refused to give it up.

Until the scheduled appointment with our homeopath came along, she looked at them and suggested that I try removing berries from their diet, as she didn’t think a healing crisis from eating berries could last that long. So I followed her direction, and within a week, the eczema flares calmed down substantially.

That was a precious learning experience for me, and it identified a trigger that I never knew existed for them. It was a blessing in disguise. Under normal circumstances, they took berries infrequently, like once a week. Then I would never have been able to pinpoint berries as a trigger, as the reaction would not have been so obvious, and would have been easily masked by other foods and pollutants.

It also highlights the need to look at overall well-being as time passed, in ascertaining whether a healing crisis is taking place. My kids continued to be irritable from the itch and inflamed skin. A week, two weeks, if there is no enhancement in the sense of wellness, then I should be viewing things from other angles. More information on healing crisis versus allergic reaction or intolerance can be found at

Have faith, and heal your eczema naturally

When embarking on some remedy for your eczema, like juicing, fasting, homeopathy, gluten free diet, etc. be mentally prepared for a healing crisis, which is a normal and healthy occurrence. If it happens, take it n stride, have faith and press on. Use the methods suggested above to ease yourself through the healing crisis for eczema. But also be open-eyed and open-minded to the possibility of some allergic or sensitive reaction to some ingredients used, so that you don’t have to go through unnecessary suffering of the worsened symptoms.


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11 thoughts on “How to tell if it’s a Healing Crisis for Eczema”

  1. A lot of people think of a healing crisis (or a herxheimer reaction) just in relation to overall body cleanses or a basic detox. But, with internal conditions, such as eczema, it makes sense that in trying to treat the eczema directly that you would also experience a healing crisis. Why do I call this an internal condition? Many people think of eczema as merely a skin condition because it’s something you can see on the outside, but it’s truly a condition from the inside out. Great tips and advice provided!

    • Hi Lynn,

      Yes you’re so right. Eczema stems from an internal isssue. It could be food allergy, or environmental allergy, or vaccine induced, or a leaky gut, among some other possible causes. So we always have to look much deeper than the surface when it comes to eczema. It feels so great to have someone who understands this.

  2. One of my family member suffers from eczema and she goes through so much daily. Its just a big deal for her to just go outside and enjoy the day in the sun. I will forward this article to her, I am sure she will benefit a lot from this amazing article, Thanks for sharing. 

    • Hi Andrea, 

      Yes i’d be so glad if this could help your family member. For people who get eczema real bad, they can’t even lead a proper life, like getting to their job, or even stepping out of the house, like you said. Also hoping this site brings about some awareness that eczema is not ‘just’ a minor skin problem, but it can affect a person’s whole life, even simple tasks can become daunting for them because of their condition.

  3. I had not heard of the “healing crisis” before so I was glad you gave such a great explanation of what it is! My granddaughter has a bit of eczema and we wanted to try some natural ways to treat it because we are so tired of creams and lotions and pills and so is she! That is how we happened upon your site.

    Is eczema similar to psoriasis or are they totally different? My granddaughter’s mother has horrible psoriasis.

    About the only time we really notice flareups is when she drinks milk, then she has a whole host of problems. But not when she drinks chocolate milk. Does that make any sense?

    Thank you for sharing this information. We have not been trying natural remedies for very long so a lot of this is all new to us.

    • Hi Karin,

      Eczema and psoriasis are quite different in how they look. Psoriasis presents as thick patches of red and scaly skin that are very well-defined, usually with mild itching. Eczema can involve much more intense itching, presenting as rashes, common areas are inner folds of elbows and knees, but can be also on the neck, trunk, and limbs. Eczema tend to be more common than psoriasis.

      It seems rather weird that your granddaughter reacts to milk but not chocolate milk. You may have to scrutinise the ingredients. Are they different brands?

      Yeah do look around my site if you’re inclined to go with natural remedies. Besides diet, we also look into natural creams to help alleviate the symptoms though they don’t treat the root cause. 

      Hope your granddaughter finds relief soon. 

  4. This information is very helpful, my wife’s father suffers from that and it has been something complicated, many people think that it is something unimportant and that it usually heals on its own, but they don´t realize what the ezcema really is. is and what you need to help to treat.

    I’ll tell my wife to share this post with my father-in-law, so he can get a little more help.

    Thank you so much for sharing it.

    • Hi Emmanuel,

      I’d be so thrilled if this could help your Father-in-law. You’re spot on that many people who do not know eczema think it is a minor irritation that would go away, no big deal, why all the fuss. They don’t recognise it stems from an internal issue that drains away our energy, body and spirit if we do not look into its root cause. 

  5. I find your posts very informative and this one is yet another dose. I love the way you explain every situation to a point of offering very helpful tips. I had not thought about the healing process crisis and this post has left me thinking about a situation I had recently.

    It wasn’t Eczema, I suspect it was fever, and as you said it left my body very weak especially after I finished medication. Initially I had thought that the medication didn’t work out well on me so I decided to see the doctor about it. He confirmed that I should take lots of fruits and fluids on top of getting enough rest for a couple of days.

    Well, although he didn’t explain to me what this condition is called but seems to me according to your post that it’s the crisis involved with healing process. I wonder if it is applicable to other conditions or it’s only common with Eczema?

    Thank you so much for this information.


    • Hi Paul,

      Healing crises does apply to anybody, not just people with eczema. When your body is given the right conditions, it embarks on a spring-cleaning and sweeps out stuff from under the carpet. 🙂

      If you experienced lethargy, headaches, Low energy, and/or flu-like symptoms, it could very well be a healing crisis. I have experienced it multiples times.

  6. Thank you for your reply. Yes, we find it very odd about her reaction to milk… thanks for describing the difference between psoriasis and eczema. Thanks too for the work you are doing to promote natural healing


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