In a world where skin disorders lurk around every corner, atopic dermatitis, a very common type of eczema, involves scaly and itchy rashes. If topic dermatitis, also called infantile eczema, is a very popular type of eczema, it means there are other forms, including contact dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, neurodermatitis, nummular eczema, stasis dermatitis or hand eczema.
Beauty enthusiasts, we're here to demystify the enigma and equip you with the knowledge to conquer your skin woes with confidence!
Atopic dermatitis is due to several skin reactions leading to itching, swelling and redness. People with atopic dermatitis are more sensitive because their skin lacks specific proteins that maintain the skin's barrier.
Atopic dermatitis is very common in infants and can start as early as age from 2 to 6 months. Persons with atopic dermatitis often have asthma and suffer from seasonal or skin allergies, could it be allergies running in the family such as hay fever, or eczema. Though, atopic dermatitis is not caused by allergies, the following can make atopic dermatitis symptoms worse such as pollen, mould, dust mites, or animals, cold and dry air in the winter, colds or the flu, contact with irritants, chemicals and rough materials, such as wool, emotional stress, dry skin from frequent baths or showers and swimming, getting too hot or too cold, as well as sudden changes in temperature, and perfumes or dyes added to skin lotions or soaps.
Symptoms are numerous and will depend from a situation or a person to another. Skin changes may include blisters with oozing and crusting, dry skin all over the body, areas of bumpy skin on the back of the arms and front of the thighs, ear discharge or bleeding, raw areas of the skin from scratching, skin colour changes, such as more or less colour than the normal skin tone, skin redness or inflammation around the blisters, thickened or leather-like areas, which can occur after long-term irritation and scratching.
The type and location of the rash will vary from the age of the person. In children younger than age 2, the rash, which will often be itchy and form blisters that ooze and crust over, may begin on the face, scalp, hands, and feet. In older children and adults, the rash is more often seen on the inside of the knees and elbow. It can also appear on the neck, hands, and feet. In adults, the rash may be limited to the hands, eyelids, or genitals.
Rashes may occur anywhere on the body during a bad outbreak.
Intense itching is common. Itching may start even before the rash appears. Atopic dermatitis is often called the "itch that rashes" because the itching starts, and then the skin rash follows as a result of scratching.
Exams and Tests
Your health care provider will look at your skin and do a physical exam that may need a skin biopsy to confirm the diagnosis or rule out other causes of dry, itchy skin.
The diagnosis will be based on how your skin looks and your personal and family history,
Testing your skin allergy and reactions will help your dermatologist to dig further into other allergy symptoms especially if your atopic dermatitis is hard-to-treat.
Your health provider may also order cultures for infection of the skin since with atopic dermatitis comes frequent skin infections.
Treatment At Home
These skin rashes can be extremely painful and scratching can become irrational. To avoid it, here are some tips,
- Use a 100% natural moisturiser, or other medicine your provider prescribes.
- Take antihistamine medicines tablets to reduce severe itching.
- Keep your fingernails cut short to avoid bleeding.
- Wear light gloves during sleep if nighttime scratching is a problem.
- Keep your skin moist by using ointments, creams, or lotions 2 to 3 times a day. Choose 100% natural skincare as it does not contain alcohol, scents, dyes, and other chemicals.
- Humidify the air at home to keep it moist instead of dry.
Symptoms can worsen and keeping it under control is best by avoiding,
- Foods, such as eggs, that may cause an allergic reaction in a very young child
- Irritants, such as wool
- Strong soaps or detergents, as well as chemicals and solvents
- Sudden changes in body temperature and stress, which may cause sweating
- Or any triggers that cause allergy symptoms
When washing or bathing, try to:
- Expose your skin to water for as short a time as possible. Short, cooler baths are better than long, hot baths.
- Use 100% natural body washes and cleansers instead of regular soaps.
- Not scrub or dry your skin too hard or for too long.
- Apply lubricating creams, lotions, or ointment to your skin while it is still damp after bathing. This will help trap moisture in your skin.
Unfortunately with the rashes come as well possible complications and skin infection caused by bacteria, fungi, or viruses. The repeated itching, might lead to permanent scars if bleeding is regularly involved and a side effect that needs to be taken into consideration is coming from long-term use of medicines to control eczema.
When to Contact a Medical Professional
Call your health provider if you have any doubt and if atopic dermatitis does not get better with home care, symptoms get worse or treatment does not work, you have signs of infection (such as fever, redness, or pain).
From Moisturiser to Medicine
Eczema may be a real pain, but armed with knowledge and perseverance, victory is within reach! Remember, beauty warriors, the path to radiant skin is paved with patience, diligence, and a touch of skincare magic.
Although there is currently no cure, people can treat and prevent eczema flares using home remedies, moisturisers, medications, and lifestyle changes. If you are parent, bare in mind that eczema is most common in children, but the majority will grow out of it by the time they reach adolescence
Embrace the journey, and let your skin shine brighter than ever before!