Eczema

Eczema In Toms River, NJ

If your skin itches and appears red, it may not just be a rash. You could have eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis. Eczema is a chronic problem, with periodic flare-ups, that may accompany hay fever or asthma. Although there is no permanent remedy for eczema, you can get relief from symptoms.

What causes eczema?

The causes of eczema include:

  • A problem with your immune system
  • Dry, cracked skin which inhibits your skin’s barrier abilities
  • Genetic variations affecting barrier function of your skin
  • Bacterial film on your skin that blocks your sweat glands
  • Environmental factors

Although eczema typically begins before the age of 5, adults can suffer from eczema too. Reddish-brown patches can occur on the face, scalp, chest, elbows, knees, neck, wrists, ankles, feet and hands. Other common signs and symptoms of eczema include:

  • Swollen, raw, sensitive skin
  • Dry, cracked, scaly skin
  • Small bumps which can leak fluid and crust over
  • Chronic and severe itching which can be worse at night

Treating Symptoms

Eczema is related to allergies, so you can reduce symptoms if you:

  • Avoid any allergens which make you sensitive
  • Avoid wearing scratchy fabrics like wool
  • Avoid harsh soaps, cleaners and solvents
  • Limit dust, pollen and allergen exposure
  • Avoid tobacco smoke and air pollution
  • Avoid excess perspiration, dry skin and bacteria

There are some effective remedies you can try at home to alleviate itching and other eczema symptoms. You can try:

  • Over-the-counter antihistamines like Allegra
  • Calamine and other anti-itch topical lotions and creams
  • Moisturize while in the shower
  • Use cool, wet bandages and dressings
  • Take warm baths containing oatmeal or baking soda
  • Use a humidifier in your home
  • Wear breathable, cotton clothing

When to see your dermatologist

For severe eczema with symptoms that don’t respond to home therapies, it’s best to see your doctor. There are many effective professional treatments your doctor may suggest including:

  • Topical creams that control itching and help repair skin
  • Antibiotics if you have a skin infection
  • Prescription strength oral medications to control itching
  • Injectable or oral anti-inflammatory medications
  • Wet corticosteroid dressings
  • Light therapy using natural or ultraviolet light to eliminate patches

For more information about professional eczema treatments, call Premier Dermatology Clinic in Toms River, NJ at (732) 943-4141.
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