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Isaac talks to DrB about online eczema advice and apps
Isaac has a BSc in Psychology from the University of Birmingham UK, is a serial entrepreneur and currently lives in Toronto, Canada where he works as a director of start-ups and partnerships at a financial institution. Previously a long time eczema sufferer, ten years ago his life was changed after discovering the effectiveness of habit reversal and The Combined Approach. He has now adapted the approach into an online programme and has exciting plans to offer it as a mobile app.
DrB: How were things for you before you tried habit reversal and The Combined Approach?
Isaac: I’d had eczema since birth and over the years had tried everything imaginable to get it under control, from the usual steroids to Traditional Chinese Medicine and everything in between. I’d begun to give up hope on ever seeing an improvement when I discovered Sue Armstrong-Brown’s book, “The Eczema Solution”. This covers the approach in an easy to follow format and its emphasis on putting control back in the patient’s hands was very appealing to me.
DrB: So, how did this help you?
Isaac: Over the course of a couple of months I diligently followed the instructions and was astonished to find that it was working. I got my scratching under control using habit reversal and, following the medication instructions that are part of The Combined Approach, I began an effective treatment regimen for the first time in years. Once the scratching was no longer a problem, the medication could be effective and the chronic eczema I’d learned to live with completely disappeared. I have continued to get flare ups but am now able to stop them in their tracks and effectively live eczema free.
DrB: Excellent news! How about www.atopicskindisease.com - where does it fit in for you?
Issac: I found habit reversal to be so effective that I tried to tell others about it. Those of us with eczema are always being told about so many ‘cures’ for our condition that it’s hard to know what to listen to. Finding this site was a revelation because it clearly has a research basis and is written by a medical professional rather than a marketer. Pretty much any problem area you can think of has an article dedicated to it so it’s fantastically helpful for people on a habit reversal programme.
DrB: So you are enthusiastic about the possibilities of online advice for people with eczema?
Isaac: Yes indeed - websites like this are typical of a broader democratisation of medical help that’s increasing the availability of effective medical interventions to patients. Where you once had to visit a medical professional in person for advice, this help is becoming available without leaving home via the internet and apps. Waiting lists, cost and availability of professionals are all barriers to getting effective care that may prevent a patient getting the help they need in time.
DrB: Tell us about the online programme and your plans for a mobile app.
Isaac: This is work in progress. An online trial version of The Combined Approach was first available at www.habitreversal.com in 2018. As this is developed the plan is for it become an app to use on mobile phones. You might have seen the first wave of this progress in apps like Babylon in the UK which has been chosen by the NHS to provide online GP appointments. In future, Artificial Intelligence can perhaps replace doctors for simpler complaints - meaning that care is infinitely scalable for routine conditions. This revolution is touching every area of healthcare and can have a major impact on eczema treatment in coming years.
DrB: Thank you for sharing your experience and your plans with us. Let’s see what others think!
Have you found eczema internet advice and mobile apps helpful?
Comments welcome below!