If you suffer from eczema, you already know how uncomfortable and embarrassing it can be. Fortunately, your allergy specialist is an expert at the diagnosis and treatment of allergic conditions, including eczema.
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, can be caused by exposure to environmental substances, like harsh chemicals. If you have dry, cracked skin, you are at increased risk of developing eczema, because your skin can’t form a barrier to allergens. Eczema also has a familial component. If someone in your family has eczema, you are at increased risk of developing eczema.
Eczema affects people of all ages, and children under five years old are especially vulnerable. Acute eczema often develops into a chronic skin problem, which will flare up intermittently.
So, how can you tell if you have a rash or eczema? Some of the common signs and symptoms to look for include:
- Reddish-brown patches on your feet, hands, ankles, knees, chest, elbows, face, and scalp
- Chronic, severe itching that often gets worse at night
- Inflamed, raw, red, sensitive, and swollen skin
- Dry, cracked, scaly skin patches on various areas of your body
- Bumps appearing on your skin which drain fluid and crust over
There are a few home remedies you can try to get relief from mild cases of eczema, including:
- Taking over-the-counter antihistamine medications
- Applying calamine or other anti-itch lotion over your skin
- Applying moisturizer after taking a shower
- Applying cool, wet dressings and bandages to affected areas
- Placing a humidifier in your home to moisten dry air
- Wearing breathable, cool, cotton clothing
For moderate to severe cases of eczema, you should seek out the expertise of your allergy specialist, who may recommend:
- Prescription-strength oral and topical medications to stop itching
- Antibiotic medications to eliminate any underlying infection
- Oral or injectable anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain and swelling
- Corticosteroid dressings to reduce inflammation and pain
- Natural light or ultraviolet therapy to reduce or eliminate skin patches
Don’t let eczema interfere with you from living your best life. To find out more about eczema signs, symptoms, and treatment, talk with your allergy specialist today.