Eczema, also known as Atopic Dermatitis (Scientific name) is an extremely common skin disease. The word has been derived from a Greek word which means ‘boil over.’ It is an irritating skin condition which may occasionally occur in a year, or you may have to deal with it every day! It ranges from mild, moderate and severe.
Red itchy patches can appear anywhere on your body or your kid’s body. It initially attacks your chest, cheeks or chin and later it may spread to the whole body. According to sources over 30 million Americans have eczema and they have managed! So, it is manageable but living with it can be very challenging.
If kids have caught up with Eczema, it may disappear as the child gets older, but some may even experience it in their adulthood. You may develop Eczema in your adulthood no matter if you have developed it in your childhood or not.
You can be equally friendly with people who have Eczema as it is not contagious. Yes, it isn’t viral. As per researchers’ people who suffer from Eczema do so because of some combinations of their genes and ever-changing environmental changes.
The variety of symptoms:
The most important thing about Eczema is that the symptoms vary from person to person. One can use the symptom tracker to track and keep a note of his or her symptoms so that it is as for them to keep a note of their progress as well as for the doctor.
The list of common symptoms is as follows:
- Red and inflamed skin.
- Dry and sensitive skin.
- Dark colored patches on the skin.
- You may witness extreme itching which may increase at night time
- Swollen areas on the skin.
- Oozing or crusting.
- Rough, leathery or scaly patches of skin.
- Painful ulcers.
At times the itching can get so bad that one may just can’t stop scratching it and the area swells, and it may start to bleed. This may worsen your Eczema condition.
Also please remember that you may witness all the symptoms or just a few! Hence, the most appropriate way to know that you have Eczema is to consult a doctor.
Following are the types of Eczema:
1) Atopic Dermatitis:
This is the most common form of Eczema. It affects people who have-
- Asthma or hay fever,
- The family history of Eczema.
- Defects in the skin as it allows the germs to enter.
The condition may get worse because of food, dust mites, and other allergic triggers.
2) Contact Dermatitis and its types:
There are two kinds of Contact Dermatitis–
- ICD – Irritant Contact dermatitis.
- ACD – Allergic Contact dermatitis.
These may develop after some particles damage the skin. These consists of chemicals and hand washing. Even after not having Atopic Dermatitis you may develop Contact Dermatitis.
For both, this kind of Contact dermatitis antibiotics are needed. Avoid contact with the irritant or allergic substance in the future. Wearing gloves may help to keep your hands safe which often are affected.
3) Dyshidrotic Dermatitis:
The cause behind this is still not discovered, but it affects your hands and feet. It may begin with itching. It can be very painful and chronic. It also may give you some deep cracks. Rubbing some steroid drugs or taken in the stomach may decrease the effect of it.
4) Nummular Dermatitis:
This Eczema is found more on Men’s skin than on women’s. Men may first experience it in their mid-50s whereas women may experience it in their teenage or early adulthood. It may start spreading on the legs, forearms, hips and lower back. Avoid cold and dry air also don’t be exposed to chemicals. Lukewarm baths, moisturizing and antibiotics may help to decrease it.
This type of Eczema may generate because of scratching skin spots out of habit. It can be genitals, scalp, back, and ankles. Usually, people scratch the affected areas without realizing it in the daytime or even when asleep. Once you stop scratching it, it may decrease. Rubbing steroid on the skin may help to treat symptoms. If your scalp is the affected area then treating, it will be tough. You will have to take prednisone (steroid medicine) by mouth.
6) Seborrheic Dermatitis:
The most commonly known ‘dandruff’ is Seborrheic Dermatitis. The scalp is the often-affected part for infants, but for adults, it can be eyebrows, sides of nose, area behind the ears, groin, and center of the chest.
It results in falling off of skin in flakes which damage your cells. It is difficult to be treated in those people whose immune system is weak including people who have AIDS.
It can be treated by using shampoo which contains salicylic acid, selenium sulfide, zinc pyrithione or coal tar and steroid lotions.
7) Stasis Dermatitis:
This Eczema is developed when the blood in the veins of your lower legs don’t properly return to their heart. Over time if this Eczema gets worse, it may develop brown stains on your skin. It can get treated be steroid creams and lotions and also antibiotics.
Well, here is the twist in the skin condition. You may have skin irritation and red itchy patches on your body but your doctor may be confused between if it is Eczema or Psoriasis. And it is a problem because symptoms of both the issues can be similar.
Let’s see how to differentiate between both:
In Eczema itching excessively may lead to bleeding whereas In the state of Psoriasis your skin may sting and burn.
Eczema swells your skin and makes it darker while Psoriasis makes your skin thicker and more inflamed.
Eczema is caused by things that irritate the skin whereas triggers like stress and infection cause psoriasis.
Babies usually don’t have psoriasis. People who are in between 15 to 35 years of age develop Psoriasis.
Eczema is caused by dry and Sensitive skin whereas Psoriasis is found in people who have heart disease or depression.
Psoriasis can be treated in a systematic way where affect the whole body or in a topical way where it goes on your skin.
Whether it is Eczema or Psoriasis, your doctor has a way to treat it.
But as it is said ‘Prevention is better than cure,’ therefore, taking good care of your skin will help you to live a glowing life throughout!