If you're experiencing certain skin lesions that are red, dry and constantly itching you may have Eczema. It's estimated that 35 million Americans are affected by Eczema.
Eczema is a skin condition characterized by dry and itchy skin lesions that can be triggered by internal or external factors.
This guide will look more closely at Eczema, the types, causes, symptoms and treatments. It will help you understand the skin conditions if you're currently affected by it and how to deal with it.
What is Eczema?
Eczema or dermatitis is a medical condition that causes an inflammatory reaction of the skin, in response to exposure to external factors (exogenous eczema) or internal factors (endogenous eczema).
Eczema causes the skin to become irritated, redden and dry. In addition, there's often itching along with the irritation. In some cases, flakes may occur.
There may also appear to be bubbles or eruptions filled with fluid that are moist and ooze on contact. Lesions can occur on the face, inside the elbows, behind the knees, on the hands, or feet.
Types of Eczema
There are several types of eczema that vary in causes and symptoms. The following are the most common forms of the skin disorder.
- Atopic Eczema: This most common type of eczema is caused by an abnormal response of the body's immune system. It is characterized by indications of red scabs and inflamed skin with constant itching.
- Contact Eczema: Contact eczema occurs when the skin comes in contact with an external allergen or irritant. The outbreak is localized to the spot of content. Triggers can include washing powder or cosmetics. People who are prone to allergies are more likely to experience contact eczema.
Seborrheic Eczema: As a common inflammatory disease of the skin, it's characterized by lesions in the form of scales that usually occur on the scalp and face.
The causes of Eczema depends on which type of the skin disorder you have. In the case of contact eczema, it is triggered by the exposure to a certain irritant, which generates the reaction on the skin.
In the case of seborrheic and atopic eczema, there is no definite cause and is generally attributed through genetics. Other factors that are triggers include prolonged dryness of the skin, a lack of elastin or low levels of Vitamin E.
Atopic and seborrheic eczema can occur at any age, even from childhood. It usually appears on the face and the scalp, and then spreads throughout the body. It appears in the form of red lesions, dry skin and intense itching.
With contact eczema lesions are similar to those described above. They can occur as a result of being exposed to a specific substance, or by the daily use of a common product such as soaps, shampoo or a cosmetic cream.
In the case of atopic and seborrheic eczema, treatments such as topical corticosteroids, sedative and non-sedating antihistamines are often used, which allow the patient to get some relief.
In some cases, oral corticosteroids should be administered. It's very important that you also change the type of cosmetics and products you use.
You should use the appropriate products that are hypoallergenic and with a neutral pH to prevent any adverse reactions with your skin.