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Eczema (atopic dermatitis) is a skin condition that causes dry, red, itchy skin. It usually starts in early childhood. Eczema can affect different areas of the body at other times. Your doctor may refer to this condition as an “allergy” because some people with eczema develop an allergy to something that touches their skin or triggers eczema symptoms. Some people get an asthma-like allergy called allergic bronchial asthma after having long-term (chronic) cases of eczema. These allergies together are sometimes referred to as atopic dermatitis or atopy.
Eczema is skin deep eczema symptoms
Eczema does not only cause skin-related changes, but it can increase the risk of:
- Hay Fever:
Eczema is sometimes called “the itchy rash of hay fever.” This happens because eczema and hay fever often occur together.
- Allergic asthma:
The food allergy may like peanuts, soy foods, cow’s milk protein, egg white, etc., can cause allergic asthma in people with atopic dermatitis. Children who had more than three episodes of wheezing before 18 months are more likely to have atopic dermatitis later on in life than children without any wheezing episode.
At times eczema can also lead to melanoma. People who have had this skin condition for more than ten years have a higher risk of getting this type of skin cancer.
- Behcet’s disease:
It is a painful immune system disorder that affects the joints, genitals, and mouth, but it can also cause eye inflammation, leading to loss of vision in some cases. People with eczema are at increased risk for this rare autoimmune disorder that can affect many organs and systems throughout your body.
5.Pityriasis rubra pilaris (PRP):
This is a chronic autoimmune disorder that causes red scaly patches on the upper arms and thighs. PRP often occurs together with other autoimmune conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. These disorders share genetic risk factors, and people who have these conditions are susceptible to other autoimmune diseases.
Eczema is sometimes called “the itchy rash of hay fever.” This happens because eczema and psoriasis often occur together. These two skin diseases share the same genes that increase your risk for both of them.
Eczema can cause rosacea, a facial redness disease that causes bumps on the face along with acne or just pimples in some cases. It is caused by too much exposure to sunlight or workaholic stress over time leads to facial redness, flushing, skin thickness, etc. The treatments for this condition include antibiotics, oral contraceptives, topical medications, etc.
It is another autoimmune disorder that causes hives or redness, swelling, and itching on the skin. People with eczema are at increased risk for this rare disease because of the genetic link between these two disorders.
People with this condition are more likely to develop asthma. Adults with atopic dermatitis and hay fever have an increased risk of developing asthma later in life than people without these conditions.
- Type 1 Diabetes:
Eczema increases the risk factor for type 1 diabetes. The reason why atopic dermatitis causes the development of type 1 diabetes is still unclear, but researchers think that it may be related to an immune system malfunction.
A large-scale study found that adults who had eczema as infants or children were 2-3 times more likely than others to experience depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts during their lifetime.
- Rheumatoid arthritis:
Eczema increases the risk for this autoimmune disease which causes swollen, red, stiff, and sometimes painful joints. Researchers estimate that eczema may increase your risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis by approximately 50%.
- Cardiovascular diseases:
People with atopic dermatitis are at higher risk of developing heart problems than adults who don’t have skin allergies. The reason why this happens is still unclear, but researchers suspect that it may be due to high cholesterol or obesity in some cases.
These can be the complications of eczema, but it is good to know that there are treatments available for this skin condition. Creams, medications, and injections can help reduce inflammation or remove dead skin cells for smoother skin.
What triggers eczema?
Eczema is not contagious, and you can’t catch it from someone else. The triggers of eczema are:
- Environmental allergens:
People with eczema are more likely to have other allergies, including food, respiratory allergies, latex allergies, etc., because of a genetic link between these two diseases.
- Triggers for flares:
Many things can trigger a flare-up or worsen the symptoms, including exposure to harsh soaps, cleaning products, shampoos, or laundry detergent containing fragrances or specific chemicals to which you may be sensitive. Infections such as strep throat could also cause an outbreak of eczema. When you have a flare-up, your skin can become very dry, another trigger for eczema.
Do not underestimate how stress or anxiety can affect your health. It has been linked to high blood pressure, heart disease, depression, and other diseases. Stress and anxiety affect the nervous system and increase inflammation in the body, triggering an outbreak of eczema in people who suffer from it. So try relaxation techniques such as deep breathing when you are stressed out about work or home issues that may cause flare-ups of your skin condition.
When you get sick, like having a cold or flu, your immune system makes extra antibodies to fight against germs causing infections such as strep throat. This can also cause an increase in eczema flare-ups because your body is affected by the illness.
- Menstrual cycle:
A woman’s monthly menstrual cycle may trigger a flare-up of her skin condition. The reason why this happens is still unclear, but researchers think that it might be due to changes in hormones during ovulation and menstruation among women who suffer from eczema.
- Skincare products:
The ingredients found in skincare products, such as moisturizers or lotions, can irritate the skin and worsen symptoms of atopic dermatitis in people with eczema. If you have sensitive skin, try using fragrance-free, mild cleansers or soap substitutes available for people who have sensitive skin.
- Cigarette smoke:
Smoking is not suitable for your overall health, so you might want to quit or avoid secondhand smoke if you have eczema. The chemicals in cigarette smoke can cause an increase in flare-ups in people with atopic dermatitis. If you live with a smoker, then try asking them to do their smoking outside the home and keep the door closed when they are indoors. It will also help prevent your kids from getting sick because of secondhand smoke.
- Dry skin:
Dry skin is very common in people who have eczema. Keeping your skin hydrated can prevent your symptoms from getting worse. You can apply lotion, cream, or petroleum jelly to keep the moisture locked into the skin. If you are outside, wear gloves and cover up with a scarf or hat to protect your skin from the wind and elements that might bring about more symptoms of atopic dermatitis.
- Shampoo allergy:
A shampoo allergy may trigger an outbreak of eczema in some cases. It causes itching, redness, swelling, which could also cause raw patches on the scalp among people who suffer from this condition. A shampoo allergy can be confirmed by patch testing where small amounts of different ingredients found in shampoos are applied to the skin and its reactions observed. Your dermatologist will prescribe an antihistamine to treat your symptoms. —
So, if you have eczema, try avoiding these triggers, such as harsh soaps, cleaning products, shampoos, or laundry detergents that contain fragrances or certain chemicals you may be sensitive to. Infections such as strep throat could also cause an outbreak of eczema.
What are the causes of eczema?
People who have a family history of having atopic dermatitis are more likely to develop it, especially if they have close relatives with asthma, hay fever, or food allergies. Genes play a significant role in this disease for sure.
If your parents had food allergies, hay fever, or asthma, then there is a high chance that you will develop these types of conditions as well. In most cases, people develop allergies because their immune thinks that certain things such as pollen, dust, or some kinds of food are dangerous to the body. In turn, the immune system reacts by creating antibodies against those substances, which can cause severe symptoms such as itchy skin and watery eyes. However, some people develop allergies later in life from being exposed to something new such as a specific job that required them to work with harsh chemicals or a new perfume that they started using for the first time.
- Skin conditions:
Eczema is often passed down through families, which means if you have a family history of this skin condition, then chances are you will develop it too. Other skin conditions such as psoriasis, acne, or atopic dermatitis during childhood run in families, so your parents had these before. There is a chance that you will inherit it.
- Other skin conditions:
If you have psoriasis, acne, or any other type of skin condition, then there is a chance that you will develop atopic dermatitis too. The immune system may think that these conditions are foreign substances or invaders that need to be attacked, so it produces antibodies against them, ultimately resulting in eczema flare-ups.
- Environmental factors:
Other environmental factors such as humid weather, dry air, extreme cold, certain types of fabrics, or irritants like soap on the skin can trigger symptoms of atopic dermatitis in people who are prone to this disease. This is more common in children than adults since their weak immune systems cannot tolerate these triggers right away. Once they grow older and their immune system matures, symptoms tend to worsen with age without any flare-ups.
What is the treatment available for eczema?
- Anti-inflammatory creams:
Moisturizers contain corticosteroids which can reduce inflammation of the skin while also providing moisture. These are available in both prescription and over-the-counter forms without any need for an eczema doctor’s consultation. If this does not work, then you will need to consult with your dermatologist, who may prescribe more potent doses of corticosteroids or other types of medications such as immunomodulatory.
Your doctor will usually ask you to try a combination of steroid creams and immunomodulators to get the best results. Immunomodulators can be taken orally or injected through a syringe, depending on the severity of your eczema.
- Prescription-strength antihistamines:
Your doctor will prescribe you an antihistamine that can reduce itching when it occurs. This is usually done together with other treatments such as moisturizers, prescription creams, and oral medications.
- Allergy shots:
In some cases, when corticosteroids do not work, your dermatologist may recommend allergy shots, especially if you have food allergies, hay fever, or asthma in your family history. This treatment can be very effective in treating problems such as eczema flare-ups and atopic dermatitis.
- Homeopathic treatment for eczema:
- A homeopathic doctor usually advises homeopathic treatment for eczema to strengthen your immune system and offer relief from eczema symptoms. The treatment is entirely natural and has no side effects.
- Homeopathic treatment for eczema has proved to be a boon for some people suffering from the disease. Homeopathic remedy for eczema is given following your homeopathic case taking and cannot be compared with any other conventional treatment, as it works differently on different patients. This is the main reason why homeopathy is preferred by many people these days.
- Homeopathic treatment for eczema eases your condition naturally without side effects! It is suggested that you visit a registered homeopathy doctor to get a correct diagnosis of the disease.
- Homeopathic medicine for itching should be taken following your case taking. Some people might experience instant relief after consuming their homeopathic treatment, while others might have to wait for some days before they get relief from symptoms. The duration varies from person to person depending on their health condition, body type, and immune system strength.
Homeopathy can help reduce eczema severity if consumed regularly. It is beneficial not only for the skin but also helps in preventing other future reoccurrences. For more information on eczema and its homeopathic treatment, you can book an appointment through OHO Homeopathy!