Home  >  Skin Conditions  >  Eczema

Eczema is a very common condition. The term, eczema, is used to describe a range of conditions that cause persistent inflammation and irritation of the skin. Between 10 and 20 percent of infants develop eczema, and while it is less common in adults, it can affect people of all ages. Most children tend to outgrow the condition by age ten, but eczema can persist throughout a person’s life. In most cases, proper medical treatment can help control and/or alleviate the symptoms.

Eczema Causes

The exact cause of eczema is still unknown to doctors. However, it is widely believed that eczema begins with a person’s immune system. Most research suggests that the condition appears when the immune system overreacts to a skin irritant. Additionally, most doctors believe that this condition can be genetically passed to children.

Similar to rosacea, while eczema’s exact cause is unknown, many of its triggers have been isolated. The condition can appear from contact with a number of different factors, such as household cleaners, cosmetic products, chemicals, metals, foods, pets, fabrics, weather, and even stress. If you notice that a certain product or experience triggers eczema in your body, make a note of it. This information can be very useful to a dermatologist.

Eczema Symptoms

Regardless of the conditions cause, appearance, of the affected area of skin, eczema is always itchy. This itchiness can sometime appear prior to the tell-tale red rash. This rash will usually look try, scaly, and thick, and people with fair skin may notice their rash become red, sometimes turning brown over time. People with darker skin will also see a change in skin color, where the rash will change to either a lighter or darker color than the natural hue.

In infants, eczema can begin to ooze or crust over. It is common for eczema to appear on the face, the backs of the knees, inside the wrists, and on the hands and feet, but it can appear anywhere on the body.

Basic Formula for Recovery, Healing, and Improvement

When it comes to eczema, the most important goal is to prevent itching. When the rash itches, patients will typically scratch at the skin. This can create wounds that eventually lead to infection and possible scarring. To reduce the itchy feeling, it is important to keep the eczema-affected skin moist. This will both reduce the risk of injury and soothe the skin. There are several types of lotions and creams used to treat eczema, and in some cases, oral medication can be prescribed to help relieve the symptoms. Rash treatments can also be effective.

Once the area has improved, it is helpful to work with a doctor to find your eczema triggers. While there is no definitive cure for eczema, avoiding these triggers can help reduce the risk of experiencing future eczema flare-ups.

Eczema - Treatments & Procedures