If you or someone you know suffers from eczema, then you know just how frustrating and debilitating this skin condition can be. Eczema is a very common skin condition that affects millions of people all over the world. In this blog post, we will answer all of your questions about eczema. We will discuss what eczema is, the symptoms, the different types, and the treatment options.
What is eczema?
Eczema is a skin condition that causes the skin to become dry, itchy, red, and inflamed. Eczema causes damage to the skin barrier function, which causes the skin to become more sensitive and susceptible to dryness. It can show up anywhere on the body but is normally found on your hands, neck, feet, ankles, knees, inner elbows, and around the eyes. The exact cause of eczema is unknown. However, there are certain factors that are thought to contribute to the development of eczema. These include genetics; a family history of eczema or allergies; exposure to irritants or allergens; and a weakened immune system. There are many misconceptions about eczema, but it is not contagious or fatal.
What are the symptoms of eczema?
Eczema can appear differently from person to person. The severity of the symptoms can also vary from person to person. However, there are some common signs and symptoms that are associated with eczema.
- Dry, cracked, scaly skin
- Redness or rash
- Swollen, inflamed skin
- Raw, sensitive skin
- Oozing and crusting
What are the different types of eczema?
- Atopic dermatitis is the most common type of eczema. Atopic dermatitis is also known as childhood eczema because it often develops in early childhood and can be more common for those who have a family history of eczema.
- Contact dermatitis occurs when the skin comes into contact with an irritant that causes an itchy rash, or causes an allergic reaction. Common substances include soap, cosmetics, fragrances, jewelry, poison ivy, or other plants.
- Seborrheic dermatitis is a type of eczema that affects the scalp and face. Along with red, scaly skin, seborrheic dermatitis can also cause dandruff.
- Nummular eczema is a type of eczema that causes coin-shaped patches of skin to become red, itchy, and inflamed. Common on arms and legs, these itchy sores may ooze or crust over.
What can I do to treat eczema?
There is no cure for eczema yet, but there are several treatments you can do to help reduce the itching and discomfort that come from eczema:
- Moisturize your skin at least twice daily. Our Gentle Moisturizer is made specifically for those who have dry skin and eczema.
- Bathe daily with products that are free of alcohol, fragrances, and dyes. Kidskin's Body Wash with Tea Tree Oil is a great moisturizing wash for those with eczema. Tea tree oil has anti-inflammatory properties to soothe irritation, and anti-fungal properties to reduce itching.
- Apply lotion immediately after bathing when the skin is still moist to trap in moisture.
- Use a humidifier to add more moisture to the air.
- Wear cool, smooth-textured clothing, preferably made from cotton.
- Get plenty of sleep.
If you are unable to treat eczema on your own, seek help from a dermatologist. They can better find what type of eczema you have and what treatments will work best. These may include over-the-counter or prescription topical corticosteroids; oral antihistamines; immunosuppressants; light therapy; and wet wraps.
For some people, eczema eventually goes away on its own. However, for others, eczema is a lifelong condition. This condition can be very discouraging to deal with. Try to stay positive, and reach out to your healthcare provider or therapist if eczema is causing mental health issues.