Consultant Psychiatrist



My skin is like my piano: in cold weather it goes out-of-tune. The piano is an old upright: the strings are held tight by metal pegs that are fixed by brute force in a piece of wood, the soundboard. Wood is sensitive to humidity. In cold weather, the air contains little water and the soundboard dries out. The wood then shrinks, the pegs slip in their holes, the strings slacken and the piano goes out of tune. Call the piano tuner.

He advises we use a humidifier in the room to help keep the piano in tune.

My skin tells me when the piano needs tuning, because my skin also dries out in the cold weather, and then it itches! Not only the cold weather, but also with the central heating. This warms up the cold dry air. The now hot dry air absorbs the water from the soundboard, and my skin, leaving both dry and out-of-tune.

So the skin needs more frequent use of moisturiser in cold weather.



Dr Christopher Bridgett (DrB) is a specialist in Adult General Psychiatry who has also worked in Dermatology since being first introduced to Psychodermatology by Arthur Rook in 1971. Together with dermatologists Richard Staughton (London) and Peter Norén (Uppsala) he co-authored Atopic Skin Disease - A Manual for Practitioners, which sets out a behavioural approach for the successful management of atopic eczema. Now retired from both NHS and private practice, he continues to teach and advise at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital, London and runs an online community for both practitioners and patients interested in The Combined Approach to the treatment of atopic eczema:

2 Responses to Eczema warning: cold snap on the way!

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