Eczema

You might have first noticed an itchy, red patch on your baby’s cheeks, chin, or chest that she or he scratched until it became even more irritated. Sound familiar? Or maybe you experienced something similar on your own neck, inner elbows, or behind your knees.
That’s probably when you made an appointment with your doctor, who looked at it, talked to you about your symptoms, asked you questions about your family history and the types of products you use on your skin and in your home. Then your doctor told you it was eczema.
So what exactly is eczema? Who can get it and why? And what should you do, now that you or your child has been diagnosed?
Learning more about what kind of eczema you have and what may have triggered it, is the best starting point to treating and managing it, so that your eczema doesn’t get in the way of your everyday life.
The good news is you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to help guide you — with all of the tools and support you’ll need — every step of the way.
You’re not alone
Eczema is very common. And in many cases, it’s also manageable. In fact, over 30 million Americans have some form of eczema.
It’s most common for babies and children to develop eczema on their face (especially the cheeks and chin), but it can appear anywhere on the body and symptoms may be different from one child to the next. More often than not, eczema goes away as a child grows older, though some children will continue to experience eczema into adulthood.
Adults can develop eczema, too, even if they never had it as a child.Eczema 1
When a skin rash cannot be blamed on poison ivy or chicken pox, the culprit is eczema. In this condition, the skin turns red, scaly and develops sores. The itching is beyond the limit and the skins starts to shed in the form of scales. Dermatitis is the other name for eczema. Dermatitis actually means inflammation of the skin and the skin turns pink and sore. Eczema is a common child problem as out of ten kids at least one kid gets eczema and majority of them get it before they turn five years old. Children who are above five years are also at a risk of developing eczema, but once they become teenagers, the chances are negligible.
Not only does eczema dries the skin, it also makes it itch horribly. The skin break out can even take the form of rashes. Eczema is a condition which comes and goes frequently and therefore it is chronic. When any foreign bodies come in contact with the skin, a special kind of cells present in the skin will react to them. Basically, they inflame the skin as a measure of protection. The harmful foreign objects trigger the reaction and make these special cells to over react. This turns the skin itchy, sore and red. Children, who get eczema frequently, have a larger quantity of these special cells.
Usually, people who have family members with asthma, hay fever or any allergies are more prone to getting eczema. It is in their genes to get eczema and this problem is passed over to them by their parent. Some scientists say that people, who as children have had eczema, are at a higher risk of developing asthma or hay fever later in their life. Allergies can only make eczema worse. The good news is that eczema is not contagious, so children can be happy about not catching the infection. The first symptom of eczema is rash development. These rashes may seem to go away in the beginning, but will return back. Although eczema itches badly, not all rashes will itch. Eczema will start to develop behind the knees and inside of the elbows. It will slowly spread to the face and other body parts.
Because rashes can be caused due to many other reasons apart from eczema, the doctor will examine the rashes and its cause very carefully. If eczema is confirmed, the child may have to use a moisturizing cream or lotion to stop the itchiness and drying of the skin. In serious cases, the patient will be recommended corticosteroids. It is a steroid cream or ointment which needs to applied to check skin inflammation. If the itching is really irritating, antihistamine can be taken in either liquid or pill form. And if the scratching had resulted in an infection, antibiotics will also be prescribed. The problem doesn’t get solved forever, but it makes the condition better for the time being.
There are certain things which trigger eczema and should be avoided by children who get eczema frequently. Perfumes, detergents, soap, dry air in winters with very little moisture, and sweaty and hot skin. Also when coming in contact with dust mites and scratchy fabrics can increase skin irritation. The child must abstain from scratching even if the skin is itching badly, as that will make the skin itch more badly. The skin can also get infected with bacteria because of skin breaking and bleeding. A washcloth can be dipped on cool water and placed on the area of itchiness. The parents should cut the nails short of the child so that he/she doesn’t hurt himself while scratching. Lastly, lots of water should be consumed to provide moisture to the dry skin.
An eczema flare-up is when one or more eczema symptoms appear on the skin. Common triggers of eczema flare-ups include:
chemicals found in cleaners and detergents that dry out the skin
rough scratchy material like wool
synthetic fabrics
raised body temperature
sweating
temperature changesEczema 2
sudden drop in humidity
stress
food allergies
animal dander
upper respiratory infections
Our skin plays an important role in our lives. In addition to protecting our bodies and internal organs, skin and its condition can also have an impact on appearance. For that reason, there are many men and women who are always on the lookout for ways to improve their skin or repair skin damage. Despite the fact that there are a countless number of over-the-counter skincare products that claim to provide relief and repair, there are also many natural remedies that can easily and safely produce the same results.
If you are an individual who suffers from peeling skin, you are urged to examine the vitamins that you currently consume. Whether it be through the taking of a vitamin supplement or through the consumption of vitamin rich foods, vitamins can play an important role in healthy skin. Proteins, vitamin A, vitamin B, and vitamin C can also assist with peeling skin. They do so by replenishing the skin with needed nutrients. For food consumption, fish, eggs, carrots, milk, cheese, vegetables, and citrus fruits should be consumed on a daily basis.
Eczema is another skin problem experienced by many. Eczema is dangerous on many different levels, as it often produces the uncontrollable urge to itch. This can result in an itchy rash, which can also increase one’s chances of developing an infection. One of the best ways to prevent an eczema outbreak is limit exposure to trigger factors. For some individuals, a trigger factor is food, such a dairy products. For others, an eczema trigger factor is close contact with certain chemicals, such as laundry detergent. If eczema is developed, a natural remedy that can provide relief is the daily consumption of tomato juice.
Razor burn is another skin problem that is experienced by men, women, as well as teenagers. The best way to prevent razor burn is by careful shaving. Warm water should be used to help soften up the skin. Soap is also advised, as it can help to move the razor along, resulting in less skin nicks and cuts. Should razor burn develop, crush a few strawberries and mix them with one spoon full sour cream. This mixture should be applied to the affected area and left on for around ten to fifteen minutes. Apply daily until the razor burn is no longer an issue.
Sunburn is another one of the many skin complications that many seek relief from. The good news with sunburns is that there are a number of natural remedies that can provide relief, mostly with the pain. Aloe Vera is one of the most well-known natural remedies for sunburns. Other remedies involve milk and raw cucumbers. For cucumbers, apply slices of raw cucumbers to the burned area for relief and a reduction in skin inflammation. As for milk, dip it in a paper towel or cloth and gently apply to the skin. Milk tends to have a claming affect on burned and inflamed skin.
Dry skin is another skin condition that many try to seek relief from. Dry skin can result in itching and it can increase one’s chances of having an eczema outbreak. The good news, however, is that it is easy for many to naturally seek relief from dry skin. A mashed ripe banana is an ideal way to treat dry skin on the neck and face. Of course, this natural remedy can be used on other parts of the body, but it can get quite messy. Easy ways to relieve dry skin on the whole body include taking a milk bath once or twice a month or adding five drops of oat extract to warm bathwater.
As outlined above, there are a number of natural remedies and home remedies that are ideal for treating a wide range of skin complications. Where the skin is concerned, it is important to keep any open cuts or wounds covered, as the risk of infection is quite high. Should you ever suspect an infection, seek medical treatment immediately, even if you are using some of the above mentioned natural remedies
There is no cure for eczema. In some cases, eczema can cause additional health complications.
Skin infections such as impetigo are brought on by constant itching. When scratching breaks the skin, bacteria and viruses can enter. Symptoms include:
redness
pus-filled bumps
cold sores
fever blisters
If these symptoms appear, contact a doctor.
Neurodermatitis is also caused by frequent itching. It leaves skin thickened, red, raw, and darker in color. This is not a dangerous condition but may result in permanent discoloration and thickening of skin even when eczema is not active. Scratching can also cause scarring.
Many people with eczema report feeling embarrassed and self-conscious about their skin. Receiving proper treatment and getting stress under control can help calm symptoms. Support groups can also help people cope.
Vigorous exercise can be difficult for people with eczema because sweating can bring on a bout of itching. Dress in layers so you can cool down while exercising. You may also want to avoid intense physical activity during an eczema flare-up.
but just know that you are not the only one that have eczema. there time you may have it for a little time but it may go away and that it or come back for time to time. you only get Eczema if someone in you family have psoriasis.

what is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a chronic (long-lasting) skin disease of scaling and inflammation that affects greater than 3.1 percent of the U.S. population, or more than 6.7 million adults. Although the disease occurs in all age groups, it primarily affects adults. It appears about equally in males and females.
Psoriasis occurs when skin cells quickly rise from their origin below the surface of the skin and pile up on the surface before they have a chance to mature. Usually this movement (also called turnover) takes about a month, but in psoriasis it may occur in only a few days.In its typical form, psoriasis results in patches of thick, red (inflamed) skin covered with silvery scales. These patches, which are sometimes referred to as plaques, usually itch or feel sore. They most often occur on the elbows, knees, other parts of the legs, scalp, lower back, face, palms, and soles of the feet, but they can occur on skin anywhere on the body. The disease may also affect the fingernails, the toenails, and the soft tissues of the genitals, and inside the mouth.
How Does Psoriasis Affect Quality of Life?
Individuals with psoriasis may experience significant physical discomfort and some disability. Itching and pain can interfere with basic functions, such as self-care, walking, and sleep. Plaques on hands and feet can prevent individuals from working at certain occupations, playing some sports, and caring for family members or a home. The frequency of medical care is costly and can interfere with an employment or school schedule. People with moderate to severe psoriasis may feel self-conscious about their appearance. Psychological distress can lead to depression and social isolation.
What Causes Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin disorder driven by the immune system, especially involving a type of white blood cell called a T cell. Normally, T cells help protect the body against infection and disease. In the case of psoriasis, T cells are put into action by mistake and become so active that they trigger other immune responses, which lead to inflammation and to rapid turnover of skin cells.
In many cases, there is a family history of psoriasis. Researchers have studied a large number of families affected by psoriasis and identified genes linked to the disease.
People with psoriasis may notice that there are times when their skin worsens, called flares, then improves. Conditions that may cause flares include infections, stress, and changes in climate that dry the skin. Also, certain medicines may trigger an outbreak or worsen the disease. Sometimes people who have psoriasis notice that lesions will appear where the skin has experienced trauma. The trauma could be from a cut, scratch, sunburn, or infection.
How Is Psoriasis Diagnosed?
Occasionally, doctors may find it difficult to diagnose psoriasis, because it often looks like other skin diseases. It may be necessary to confirm a diagnosis by examining a small skin sample under a microscope.
There are several forms of psoriasis. Some of these include:
Plaque psoriasis. Skin lesions are red at the base and covered by silvery scales.
Guttate psoriasis. Small, drop-shaped lesions appear on the trunk, limbs, and scalp. Guttate psoriasis is most often triggered by upper respiratory infections (for example, a sore throat caused by streptococcal bacteria).
Pustular psoriasis. Blisters of noninfectious pus appear on the skin. Attacks of pustular psoriasis may be triggered by medications, infections, stress, or exposure to certain chemicals.
Inverse psoriasis. Smooth, red patches occur in the folds of the skin near the genitals, under the breasts, or in the armpits. The symptoms may be worsened by friction and sweating.
Erythrodermic psoriasis. Widespread reddening and scaling of the skin may be a reaction to severe sunburn or to taking corticosteroids (cortisone) or other medications. It can also be caused by a prolonged period of increased activity of psoriasis that is poorly controlled. Erythrodermic psoriasis can be very serious and requires immediate medical attention.
Another condition in which people may experience psoriasis is psoriatic arthritis. This is a form of arthritis that produces the joint inflammation common in arthritis and the lesions common in psoriasis. The joint inflammation and the skin lesions don’t necessarily have to occur at the same time.
How Is Psoriasis Treated?
Doctors generally treat psoriasis in steps based on the severity of the disease, size of the areas involved, type of psoriasis, where the psoriasis is located, and the patient’s response to initial treatments. Treatment can include:1
medicines applied to the skin (topical treatment)
light treatment (phototherapy)
medicines by mouth or injection (systemic therapy).
1All medicines can have side effects. Some medicines and side effects are mentioned in this publication. Some side effects may be more severe than others. You should review the package insert that comes with your medicine and ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have any questions about the possible side effects.
Over time, affected skin can become resistant to treatment, especially when topical corticosteroids are used. Also, a treatment that works very well in one person may have little effect in another. Thus, doctors often use a trial-and-error approach to find a treatment that works, and they may switch treatments periodically if a treatment does not work or if adverse reactions occur.
Topical Treatment
Treatments applied directly to the skin may improve its condition. Doctors find that some patients respond well to ointment or cream forms of corticosteroids, vitamin D3, retinoids, coal tar, or anthralin. Bath solutions and lubricants may be soothing, but they are seldom strong enough to improve the condition of the skin. Therefore, they usually are combined with stronger remedies.
Light Therapy
Natural ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun and controlled delivery of artificial UV light are used in treating psoriasis. It is important that light therapy be administered by a doctor. Spending time in the sun or a tanning bed can cause skin damage, increase the risk of skin cancer, and worsen symptoms.
Systemic Treatment
For more severe forms of psoriasis, doctors sometimes prescribe medicines that are taken internally by pill or injection. This is called systemic treatment.
Retinoids. Oral retinoids are compounds with vitamin A-like properties that may be prescribed for severe cases of psoriasis that do not respond to other therapies. Because these medications also may cause birth defects, women must protect themselves from pregnancy.
Cyclosporine. Taken orally, cyclosporine acts by suppressing the immune system to slow the rapid turnover of skin cells. It may provide quick relief of symptoms, but the improvement stops when treatment is discontinued. Cyclosporine may impair kidney function or cause high blood pressure (hypertension). Therefore, patients must be carefully monitored by a doctor.
Methotrexate. Like cyclosporine, methotrexate slows cell turnover by suppressing the immune system. It can be taken by pill or injection. Patients taking methotrexate must be closely monitored because it can cause liver damage and/or decrease the production of oxygen-carrying red blood cells, infection-fighting white blood cells, and clot-enhancing platelets.
PDE4 inhibitors. Taken orally, phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4) inhibitors target molecules inside immune cells to suppress the rapid turnover of skin cells and inflammation.
Biologic response modifiers. Biologics are made from proteins produced by living cells instead of chemicals. They interfere with specific immune system processes which cause the overproduction of skin cells and inflammation. These drugs are injected (sometimes by the patient). Patients taking these treatments need to be monitored carefully by a doctor. Because these drugs suppress the immune system response, patients taking these drugs have an increased risk of infection, and the drugs may also interfere with patients taking vaccines. Also, some of these drugs have been associated with other diseases (like central nervous system disorders, blood diseases, cancer, and lymphoma) although their role in the development of or contribution to these diseases is not yet understood.
Combination Therapy
Combining various topical, light, and systemic treatments often permits lower doses of each and can result in increased effectiveness. There are many approaches for treating psoriasis. Ask the doctor about the best options for you. Find out:
How long the treatment may last.
How long it will take to see results.
What the possible side effects are.
What to do if the side effects are severe.
What Research Is Being Conducted on Psoriasis?
Skin cell formation. Researchers are trying to learn how skin cells form in order to create healthy skin. At the same time, others are looking at the cells and mechanisms which cause lesions in the skin. If any of these mechanisms can be interrupted, researchers may find a way to stop the disease process.
Genetics. Significant progress has been made in understanding the inheritance of psoriasis. A number of genes involved in psoriasis are already known or suspected. In a multifactor disease (involving genes, environment, and other factors), variations in one or more genes may produce a greater likelihood of getting the disease. Researchers are continuing to study the genetic aspects of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.
Nervous system. Some researchers are looking at the nervous system to determine what causes pain and itching in psoriasis.
Immune system. Since discovering that inflammation in psoriasis is triggered by T cells, researchers have been attempting to find ways to quiet immune system reactions in the skin. Among these are studies that try to determine ways to block the activity of T cells or block cytokines (proteins that promote inflammation). If researchers find a way to target only the disease-causing immune reactions while leaving the rest of the immune system alone, resulting treatments could benefit psoriasis patients as well as those with other autoimmune diseases.
Cardiovascular problems. Research has suggested that psoriasis patients may be at greater risk of cardiovascular problems, especially if the psoriasis is severe, as well as obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Researchers are trying to determine the reasons for these associations and how best to treat patients.

 

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