Eczema-Itches that Rashes
Eczema is a type of skin allergy in which the person suffers from itchy skin and it turns red from time to time. This is a very common case reported in children and adults suffer from it too. People with eczema suffer from different types of allergies as well as asthma along with itchy, red skin. Eczema has few other forms too. Each type of eczema represents its own set of symptoms and triggers. The most common symptoms which are present in all types of eczema are dry scaly skin, red patches, and itching (which could be intense) etc.
What is Eczema?
Eczema is sometimes called “the itch that rashes” because the itching usually comes first. If you suffer from eczema you will notice scaly, leathery patches on the skin of your hands. You will also notice red patches on your skin. Atopic dermatitis is a common, often inherited form of eczema, but there are other types and many treatments.
Different types of Eczema?
Eczema is of various types. The most common is Atopic Dermatitis. When people are talking about eczema, they are usually referring to it. Another common type is Contact Dermatitis. Nearly every person undergoes from eczema at some time in their lifetimes. It occurs when the skin meets something that causes a rash. Dyshidrotic Eczema is another main type of eczema that occurs when the skin does not protect itself the way it should. Nummular Eczema is a very common type and people suffering from this get round sores, often after a skin injury like a burn or insect bite. There is a type of eczema that occurs in areas of the body with lots of oil glands. When it is on the scalp it is called dandruff. This type is known as Seborrheic Dermatitis. A type of eczema occurs in people who have poor blood flow, usually in the lower legs called Stasis Dermatitis.
What are the reasons that can cause Eczema?
The main cause of Eczema is still not fully understood. Although scientists and doctors believe it happens due to an overactive immune system which gets triggered when exposed to irritants and thus responds aggressively. It is sometimes caused by an abnormal response to proteins that are part of the human body. In a healthy individual, the immune system ignores the proteins of human body and attacks only those proteins which belong to invaders such as bacteria and viruses. If you are suffering from Eczema, then your immune system would lose the ability to distinguish the difference between your body proteins and invader proteins thus your skin would inflame in response to this confused reaction of your immune system.
What are the symptoms of Eczema?
Eczema looks different for everyone. And the flare-ups will not always happen in the same area. No matter which part of your skin is affected, eczema will almost always be itchy. The itching sometimes starts before the rash. In infants, the uncomfortable rash may lead to an oozing, crusting illness that happens mostly on the face and scalp. It can also occur on the arms, legs, back and chest. Children and teens usually show a rash that eventually turns scaly and dry. This rash appears in the bends of their elbows, back side of the knees, on their necks or on the wrists and ankles. In adults, the rash usually occurs on the face, the backs of their knees, wrists, hands, or feet.
Can Eczema be Triggered?
An eczema flare-up is considered when a patient shows one or more eczema symptoms on his skin. Eczema can be triggered by many reasons. The most common trigger of eczema flare-ups are the chemicals found in cleaners and detergents. Rough scratchy clothing materials such as wool and synthetic fabrics can also trigger eczema. Other triggers are high body temperature, excessive sweating, changes in surrounding temperature, sudden drop in humidity, mental stress, food allergies, animal dander, respiratory tract infections and severe cold weather.
What Are the Risk Factors Of Eczema?
There are numerous factors that can increase the risk of developing eczema. The most common and major risk factor is hay fever, also called asthma. Studies have found that eczema is mostly common in those children who are suffering from asthma and the adults who develop these conditions later, usually before the age of 30. Another risk factor is family history. If any of your family member is suffering from eczema then you are also at a greater risk of developing this condition.
How can we treat Eczema?
The correct treatment of eczema can be identified with the help of dermatologists, allergists, and primary care doctors. Medications like oral over the counter (OTC) antihistamines may relieve itching. They work by blocking histamine which triggers allergic reaction. Light therapy also called phototherapy is another treatment method used for treating eczema. It uses UV light or sunlamps to help prevent immune system responses that triggers eczema. It requires a series of treatments and can help reduce or clear up the skin. This method can also prevent various bacterial skin infections. Other treatment method includes acupuncture, aromatherapy, relaxation techniques like meditation, yoga, and progressive muscle relaxation etc.
How Eczema Can Be Prevented?
Eczema can be prevented by making some lifestyle changes. This include reducing stress and improving the sleep schedule. You can achieve it by doing deep breathing exercises, practicing yoga, meditation, listening to relaxing music and prioritizing a good night’s sleep. Other methods are avoiding irritating chemicals and materials like rough fabrics, harsh soaps, and detergents. If you are suffering from eczema, then you should also avoid scratching your skin. To prevent the breaking of skin, you can rub the affected area rather than scratching it making it itchier and more irritable. As dry skin can trigger an eczema flare-up, you should contact a dermatologist to prescribe you an ointment- or cream-based moisturizer that could help in soothing your skin. The above-mentioned changes can reduce the likelihood of an eczema flare-up thus helping you in leading a healthy and happy life.