Eczema affects about 10% to 20% of infants and about 3% of adults and children in the U.S. Most infants who develop the condition outgrow it by their tenth birthday, while some people continue to have symptoms on and off throughout life. With proper treatment, the disease often can be controlled.
What Are the Symptoms of Eczema?
No matter which part of the skin is affected, eczema is almost always itchy. Sometimes the itching will start before the rash appears, but when it does, the rash most commonly appears on the face, back of the knees, wrists, hands, or feet. It may also affect other areas as well.
Affected areas usually appear very dry, thickened, or scaly. In fair-skinned people, these areas may initially appear reddish and then turn brown. Among darker-skinned people, eczema can affect pigmentation, making the affected area lighter or darker.
In infants, the itchy rash can produce an oozing, crusting condition that happens mainly on the face and scalp, but patches may appear anywhere.
What Causes Eczema?
The exact cause of eczema is unknown, but it’s thought to be linked to an overactive response by the body’s immune system to an irritant. It is this response that causes the symptoms of eczema. In addition, eczema is commonly found in families with a history of other allergies or asthma. Also, defects in the skin barrier could allow moisture out and germs in.
Some people may have “flare-ups” of the itchy rash in response to certain substances or conditions. For some, coming into contact with rough or coarse materials may cause the skin to become itchy. For others, feeling too hot or too cold, exposure to certain household products like soap or detergent, or coming into contact with animal dander may cause an outbreak. Upper respiratory infections or colds may also be triggers. Stress may cause the condition to worsen. Although there is no cure, most people can effectively manage their disease with medical treatment and by avoiding irritants. The condition is not contagious and can’t be spread from person to person.
How Can Eczema Flare-ups Be Prevented?
Eczema outbreaks can sometimes be avoided or the severity lessened by following these simple tips.
- Moisturize frequently.
- Avoid sudden changes in temperature or humidity.
- Avoid sweating or overheating.
- Reduce stress.
- Avoid scratchy materials, such as wool.
- Avoid harsh soaps, detergents, and solvents.
- Be aware of any foods that may cause an outbreak and avoid those foods.
How Should Eczema Be Treated?
Eczema appears due to an improper immune reaction in which the body fails to respond appropriately to stimuli. You cannot treat this condition by simply applying lotions and creams, externally. Exposure to a stimulus will naturally trigger this condition.
The Homeopathic treatment prescribed considers the overall susceptibility of the individual to factors such as family history (genetic predisposition), sensitivity to certain food, allergens, metals and chemicals and prescribe internal remedies capable of correcting those factors.
- The treatment works towards correcting the immune response and not suppressing it
- The only medicines prescribed are internal homeopathic medicines
- No Steroids or External Medicated Lotions used as they suppress the condition
- Safe for All Age Groups and has No Side effects or Contraindications.
Types of Eczema
Atopic Dermatitis or Atopic Eczema
The most common form of eczema usually appears in the first year of life. Approximately 90% of people develop eczema before the age of five. About 50% of people who develop atopic dermatitis during childhood continue to experience a less severe form of the rash as an adult.
The rash may appear anywhere on the body, however in infants they more often develop on the scalp and face (cheeks). Other common sites are the bends of the elbows, backs of knees, ankles, wrists, neck, and upper chest.
Rashes may appear red, dry and scaly or may ooze a clear fluid, accompanied by sever itching.
Contact Dermatitis or Allergic Contact Dermatitis
Eczema resulting from contact to everyday objects such as food items, chemicals, soaps, shampoo, detergents, jewelry etc. This form of eczema results due to a faulty immune response and is one of the commonest forms of eczema.
Vesicular or A Dyshidrotic Dermatitis A (Pompholyx)
Affects only the palms of the hands, sides of the fingers, and soles of the feet. Burning, itching and a blistering rash appear.
Eruptions appear as deep blisters with intense itching and burning. The skin may peel and crack. Secondary infection may cause the blisters to ooze and form crusts. The skin may completely clear with the immediate reappearance of new blisters.
This form of eczema has a unique, coin shaped appearance, and often results after some form of skin injury (burns, insect bites etc).
The patches may begin as group of tiny reddish spots which enlarge over time and form coin shaped patches. Initially the patches may ooze and over time become red-brownish, well defines patches which as clear in the centre. They may closely resemble ringworm infection due to their oval nature.
This form of eczema usually appears in and around the ears, the scalp and may extend to the face. The rash appears as reddish or yellow-brown, oily lesions and tend to increase during cold, dry weather.
Commonly affected sites are: scalp, in and around the ear, hairline, around the eyebrows and eyelids, mouth creases, armpits, beneath the breast, groin, buttocks and arrears rich in sebaceous glands.
This form of eczema is related to peripheral vascular disease or venous stasis. Poor blood blow and accumulation of fluid at the ankles affects the skin. The area affected is the lower leg (inner ankles) and appears red-bluish and edematous (swollen). Itching, darkening of skin (hyper pigmentation) and ulceration may occur in chronic lesion.
This common eczema develops at the nerve endings and is accompanied by severe itch.