Skin Health
Steroids: Not For Long-Term Use
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“I don’t want to stop my topical steroids…do I really have to?”

Oral and topical steroids (which must be prescribed by your doctor) provide vital emergency care for severe flare-ups, itching and inflammation. But these potent drugs are intended for short-term use. Prolonged use can lead to many problems including steroidal acne, decreasing efficacy, and an unhealthy dependence. A correct diagnosis (dermatitis, psoriasis, etc.) is crucial so that a proper prevention-and-treatment program can be prescribed, limiting steroids to emergencies only. For many of our customers with babies and young children, finding an alternative to steroids for flareups (our Grandma Minnie’s The Big, Brave Boo-Boo Balm is a favorite) is important. NOTE: If you’ve been on steroids for weeks or more, expect an initial flare-up when you stop. Called the rebound phenomenon, these flareups can be so severe as to require hospitalization. If your doctor orders you to stop your steroids, even if a rebound phenomenon occurs, it is important that you do so (the rebound phenomenon occurs, in part, because you’ve been on the steroids too long). Be patient, follow your doctor’s instructions and you could be clear and steroid-free soon. Some ways to reduce steroid use:

    1. Ask your doctor for a patch test. Many times, eczema, contact dermatitis, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis and other skin conditions can be improved simply by avoiding substances you are sensitive to.
    1. Ask your doctor about non-steroidal anti-inflammatories that might be used more frequently.

 

  1. Consider maintenance with our VMV HYPOALLERGENICS©. For best results, we’d still recommend using your patch test results when selecting products.

 

For real-life case studies of coming off of steroid use for psoriasis and dermatitis, see Ace Skinvestigators.

Click here to learn how hypoallergenicity can help with most skin concerns, and to prevent flare-ups.

Click here to read about atopic dermatitis, ezema and similar skin conditions.

Click here for skin first aid for flare-ups and reactions.

Click here to learn more about the VH-Rating System.

Click here for tips on selecting a dermatologist.

Click here for information about patch tests.

Click here for information about how common contact dermatitis is, even among babies and children.