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Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis) Causes, Treatment & Symptoms

Eczema is characterized by dry, flaky skin with a reddish appearance and an itchy rash (atopic dermatitis). This skin condition does not extend to other people but is extremely common. Patients who suffer from asthma and allergies are at exceptionally high risk. 

There is currently no treatment available, but there is something you can do to alleviate the symptoms. At some juncture, between 15 and 20 percent of the general population will suffer from eczema or another state of dermatitis. Typical symptoms of eczema can appear as early as one year of age and may persist into adulthood. 

What Are The Causes Of Eczema?

There is no explicit understanding of what triggers eczema in the first place. Some evidence suggests that an overactive immune system causes the problem. When your immune system overreacts and you are exposed to external irritants, this can cause a flare-up of your condition. 

According to a study carried out in Germany, one of the potential causes of the symptoms associated with eczema may be an abnormally low level of filaggrin. This protein contributes to the maintenance of its natural suppleness and smoothness. 

As many as 15 million individuals in the United States suffer from eczema. At some point in their lives, 10–20 percent of all babies will experience symptoms of eczema. The majority of people who are born with the condition eventually outgrow it or see a significant improvement as they get older. 

Those with a family record of eczema, asthma, environmental, or food allergies are more likely to have this skin condition.

Eczema Triggers

An outbreak of eczema is defined as the appearance of any one or more of the characteristic symptoms of the skin condition eczema. According to the National Health Service (NHS), inflammatory eczema can be brought on by both internal and external factors. The NHS also lists allergies as one of the primary causes of eczema. 

The following are some examples of precipitants that frequently occur in the environment:

  • external allergens such as pollens, mold, dust, or dust mites
  • coarse and itchy material, such as a wool
  • synthetic fabric materials
  • infection of the upper respiratory tract
  • chemicals or preservatives found in cleansers and detergents
  • scented products
  • cigarette smoke
  • temperature fluctuations
  • anxiety
  • food allergies

If you suffer from eczema, avoiding these triggers can lessen the frequency of their outbreaks. 

How To Identify Eczema

One of the more typical manifestations of the underlying skin condition, eczema, is characterized by skin that is irritated, flaky, and itchy. Because it occurs in cycles, it is impossible to predict when the next flare-ups will occur.

The scalp, cheeks, inner elbows, backs of the knees, and arms are the most common areas of the body to be impacted by eczema. However, eczema can manifest itself anywhere on the body. It is not contagious, and the signs and symptoms generally improve with age.

Check out the symptoms of eczema and see if you have the condition or not: 

  • Presence of severe itching, 
  • red or brownish-gray patches, 
  • tiny raised bumps that ooze fluid when scuffed, 
  • crusty patches of dried yellow ooze that may indicate infection, 
  • Skin that feels sore or raw, thickened, scaly

For many people, having eczema makes it challenging to get a good night’s sleep. Scratching an eczema rash will only worsen the condition by exacerbating the inflammation and making the skin redder and swollen. Because of this, antibiotic treatment may be required.

At-home treatments for mild eczema include avoiding the triggers that bring on the condition and keeping the affected skin well hydrated with moisturizers. However, you should see a doctor if your symptoms are causing you discomfort or if they are getting worse.

How Is Eczema Handled?

The most effective course of treatment for eczema can be determined with the assistance of a dermatologist, an allergist, or a primary care physician. Many therapies are available to you, and the one that works best for your eczema will depend on its severity and type. It’s possible that using multiple treatments at once will produce better results. 

There are a few selections open to you:

Light Therapies

In light therapy, also known as phototherapy, ultraviolet light or sunlamps are used. This prevents immune system responses that can cause eczema to flare up. Several different treatments can help clear up or significantly improve eczema. Utilization of this product is also capable of warding off bacterial infections of the skin.

Medications

Oral antihistamines are available for purchase without a doctor’s prescription and can be used to relieve itching. They accomplish this goal by preventing allergic reactions that are caused by histamine. Because they have the potential to cause drowsiness, these medications should only be consumed at times when there is no urgent requirement for alertness.

Hydrocortisone is a mild potency steroid that is available without a prescription and can be helpful in the treatment of mild eczema. 

Patients diagnosed with moderate or severe eczema may be given high-potency steroid medications as a treatment option. If topical hydrocortisone does not alleviate the symptoms of an illness, a doctor may prescribe oral corticosteroids as an alternative treatment option. One of the more serious adverse effects that these medications can cause is bone loss. 

Immunosuppressants are the only way to calm down an overactive immune system, and they can only be obtained through a doctor’s prescription. As a direct consequence of this, eczema flare-ups are avoided entirely. A higher risk of developing cancer, kidney disease, infections, and high blood pressure are just some of the unintended impacts of this option.

How Doctors Identify Eczema

There is currently no dependable method available for accurately diagnosing eczema in patients. The majority of the time, a diagnosis can be arrived at by a doctor after a discussion of the patient’s symptoms and a physical examination of the individual. Patch tests are sometimes used to gain a deeper understanding of the factors that trigger eczema.

Patch tests for allergies can determine the specific allergens to blame for symptoms, such as contact dermatitis. The patient’s skin is tested using a patch after applying an allergen to the patch itself. If the allergen is a trigger for your reaction, the inflammation and irritation on your skin will become worse.

Takeaway

If you want to comprehend more about eczema conditions and how to handle this, contact us and visit our High Life Integrative Medicine clinic. We offer services and other resources that help address your skin conditions. 

 

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