Have you noticed dry, red, spots on your skin? Do the spots itch, weep, or ooze? If so, you are likely suffering from eczema.
Also referred to as atopic dermatitis, eczema is a common skin condition. It is estimated that more than 30 million Americans are afflicted with this chronic skin condition, and while it may be comforting to know that you are not alone, dealing with eczema can be a real challenge. The ‘rash’ that is associated with this skin condition can be unsightly, extremely bothersome and quite painful. To learn more about this condition, and how you can treat it, read on.
What Causes Eczema?
The exact cause of eczema is unknown; however, both hereditary and factors in the environment are believed to play a significant role in this skin condition.
If have eczema, your parents may also have it, or another atopic condition. Factors in the environment can also contribute to eczema, including:
- Irritants, such as soaps, shampoos, detergents and foods
- Allergens, including pets dander, pollen and mold
- Changes in temperature; it often develops in extreme heat or cold, and when humidity is very high or low
- Stress, though it is not a cause for the condition, it can aggravate it
- Hormone changes
How to Manage Eczema
While eczema may be a chronic condition, there are some things that you can do to control it and avoid outbreaks.
- Take care of your skin. Wash your skin daily with a gentle cleanser and lukewarm water. Avoid using hot water, as it can aggravate the condition.
- Avoid using products that cause outbreaks. If you notice that your eczema flares when you use certain products, discontinue using them. Look at the ingredients to note any ingredients that may have irritated your eczema and avoid using any other products that contain those ingredients in the future.
- Avoid rubbing or scratching your eczema, or wearing anything that may rub or scratch it, such as wool.
- Apply topical treatments. Products that contain ingredients that moisturize the skin and sooth the rash can alleviate the symptoms of eczema, such as Skintrium’s Enhanced Suntan Reducing Cream. This cream is formulated with aloe vera, ginseng, cucumber and chamomile, all of which are known to soothe skin and calm irritation.
- Speak to your dermatologist. If your eczema is particularly problematic, your dermatologist can recommend the best treatment options to suit your needs. For example, you may need a prescription topical cream that contains corticosteroids to control the rash, or a medication that can calm your immune system (the immune system can actually contribute to eczema symptoms, causing inflammation to develop.)
If you suffer from eczema, the best way to control it is to pinpoint the factors that contribute to an outbreak and control those factors. If an outbreak does occur, implement a skincare routine that will help to ease the aggravation to your skin. Eczema outbreaks won’t last forever, but you can avoid an outbreak and control it, if one should occur.