- by Medikoe Health Expert
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- Feb 09 2017
Atopic dermatitis: A common form of eczema
Eczema can be defined as a condition where patches of skin become inflamed, itchy, red, cracked, and rough. Sometimes blisters may occur, when they will break the affected skin will weep and ooze. Scratching the patches damages the fragile skin and exacerbates the problem. Atopic dermatitis is the most common type of eczema which develops on the basis of genetics as well as environmental factors and mostly affects babies. It begins early in life in those with a predisposition to inhalant allergies. In this rashes occur on the cheeks, neck, elbow and knee creases, and ankles.
Atopic dermatitis is not a contagious disease and is commonly seen in babies and children. As the children grow, this condition worsens and can exist even in their adulthood or may go away completely.
What causes Atopic dermatitis?
The exact cause of atopic dermatitis is not known as yet, but it is said to be caused due to genetic factors and/or some environmental triggers. Learning what triggers your atopic dermatitis flare-ups is essential. Therefore, here are some everyday lifestyle and environmental triggers that can cause the flare-ups:
- Unintentional scratching (day or night)
- Hot and long showers Warm, cold, or dry weather (weather change)
- Excessive sweating
- Certain soaps, detergents, and cleaners
- Fabrics like woolen and synthetic
- Physical irritants like dust particles, sand, smoke)
- Specific allergens like pollen, mites, dander, and dust)
- Strenuous exercise
- Mental stress
- Certain food items like peanuts, dairy products, etc.
What are the symptoms of Atopic dermatitis?
The symptoms differ with the age of the patient. Well, the signs are as follows:
Symptoms in infants:
- Rash on the scalp or cheeks
- Dry skin which is generally itchy and scaly
- Rashes that bubbles and weeps clear fluid (extreme condition)
Symptoms in children:
- Scaly, dry, itchy, leathery patches of skin
- Rash in the elbows, knees, or both
- Skin spots (lightened or darkened)
- Rashes on the neck and face (especially around the eyes)
Symptoms in adults:
A person who had atopic dermatitis as children may have discolored skin which as time passes can irritate.
What are the available treatments for Atopic Dermatitis?
It infants who are about 6-10 months old, it starts on the cheeks and face and slowly progresses to areas that begin to expose when they start crawling. Just following the skin care routine recommended by the doctor for is enough. Usually, the symptoms ease over a period of time and completely vanish after puberty.
However, depending on the severity of the condition, to smoothen the symptoms of atopic dermatitis the doctor will prescribe one or more medications. Some of these include the following:
- Ointments or Skin creams: These are the common go-to solution for treating atopic dermatitis. It is used to bring the swelling and rashes down, and even control the allergic reaction of the body.
- Antibiotics: Antibiotics are medicines that kill any living allergens. Therefore, if the condition is caused due to a bacterial infection, then antibiotics may be used to treat the infection.
- Antihistamines: These medicines may prevent an individual with the condition Corticosteroids: These medicines may provide relief from the inflamed areas on the body. The redness, swelling, and itching that come with the skin condition may also be lessened.
- Corticosteroids: These are prescribed medicines that help in relieving inflammation from the areas on the body covered with rashes caused by atopic dermatitis. Corticosteroids lessen the redness, swelling, and itching caused by atopic dermatitis.
- Phototherapy: It is supervised (under a doctor) treatment option. It is also known as light therapy. Here, a machine that produces narrowband ultraviolet B (to fall on the skin too) light is used to reduce the swelling and itching caused due to atopic dermatitis and helps in increasing the vitamin D production, and fighting bacteria on the skin that causes atopic dermatitis.
What be done at home to prevent the condition?
Here are a few things that you can do to prevent the control the condition:
- Take your daily skin care routine seriously
- Wear cotton clothes
- Stay away from stressful events
- Apply lavender oil
Talk to your doctor for more information. You can even find one here on Medikoe. Find an experienced and certified healthcare specialist near you on Medikoe answer all your questions.
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