Why are my areolas really itchy and flaky?
Eczema, a condition that causes inflammation of the skin, can affect areolas. Less commonly it will spread onto the nipple or the breast. It usually starts with itching and can become painful if the skin is opened. It can also burn. Mothers with a history of eczema may develop it on the areolas at the same time that it flares elsewhere on the body. Eczema is thought to occur when certain genetic and environmental conditions combine. Mothers who have eczema may also have allergies or asthma. It is often worse when the skin is dry. Certain irritants are known to cause eczema, including soaps, cleaners, laundry detergent, fragrances, wool, and vitamin E creams. Breastfeeding mothers can get areolar eczema when using nipple preparations or other unnecessary breast products. Eczema can be mistaken for a yeast infection.