Targeting Eczema Triggers | Everyday Health

Posted: November 14, 2018 at 3:49 am

This post was added by Dr P. Richardson

Do you notice that your skin is dry, itchy, and cracking, especially during winter months or when you are stressed out? Maybe itseczema, a condition that causes itchy, red, and scaly patches of skin. Often called dermatitis, eczema can affect anyone in any age group. While there are good eczema treatments, there is no eczema cure.

But what causes eczema? Everyday things in your environment cigarette smoke, pollen, and even your clothes can be what causes eczema to flare. This is a recurring, long-term inflammation of the skin thats related to sensitivity to allergens in the environment that may not cause the same rash in other people.

There are two major types:atopicand contact eczema.Atopicis the most common form, and it's linked to asthma and hay fever (allergic rhinitis). Then there is contact eczema, in which something from the outside contacts the skin. Contact eczema can be allergic; for example, some people have a nickel allergy and they get eczema rashes from their belt, earrings, or other items. The second form of contact eczema is irritant, and it affects everyone to a certain degree. This is the type of eczema you may see from bandage adhesives, soaps, and detergentsand is commonly found on adult hands. Rashes that look like eczema may be found on various parts of the body. Adultseborrheicdermatitis affects adults ages 20 to 40 and may be caused by ayeast growth. This type is seen on thescalpas mild dandruff but can spread to the face, ears, and chest. Stasis dermatitis affects the lower legs of adults in middle and old age and is caused by poor circulation.

How do you get eczema? Eczema is genetically linked and often runs in families. Anyone can get eczema, from newborn babies to elderly adults. While eczema may go away periodically, it is a long-term (chronic) condition that will come back.

If you or a loved one has eczema, talk to your doctor. There is no cure for eczema, but there are over-the-counter and prescription treatments that may ease thesymptoms, including:

Topical and oral steroids are used to reduce the inflammation and redness during eczema flares. They come in several strengths, depending on your age, size, and eczema severity. Topicalimmunomodulatorsare substances that help to regulate the immune system are used sometimes when eczema is hard to manage.

In addition toeczema treatments, preventing the condition is very important. Many people with eczema find relief by avoiding harsh soaps, chemicals, and other irritants, by applying medicated creams or ointments, and by moisturizing the skin. Other prevention tipsfrom Mayo Clinicinclude:

Additionally, identifying and avoiding your personal eczema trigger, or triggers, is an important part of your overall eczema treatment plan.

Targeting Eczema Triggers | Everyday Health

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