Eczema Awareness Month

Eczema Awareness Month Oct 6, 2020 / by Complete Family Dermatology Team

Please join Complete Family Dermatology in celebrating Eczema Awareness Month in October. We are using the month to educate others about this chronic skin condition. Many people do not recognize eczema, which means they are most likely going to ignore the signs and manage it improperly. In this blog, we will explain what eczema is, what the symptoms are, and how to treat it.  

What is Eczema? 

Eczema is a chronic skin condition that causes the skin to be red, itchy, dry, and inflamed. The most common form of eczema is atopic dermatitis (AD). The other forms are contact dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema, nummular eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, and stasis dermatitis.  

How Common is Eczema?

Eczema is more common than you think. According to the National Eczema Association, over 31 million people have eczema in the United States. Eczema is found on all types of skin - age, gender, and race do not matter. and every case is different.  However, it is most frequently seen on babies and children. Nearly 70% of eczema cases start in children younger than five years old as stated by Neosporin. Eczema can be found in different places on the body, but most likely on cheeks, skin folds, joints, and forehead. The first signs of an eczema patch are redness and oozing on creases of the body. About 60% of babies who have eczema experience at least one symptom into adulthood.  

What Are the Symptoms?

As we have said, eczema looks different for everyone. But, many patients of eczema will tell you that it impacts nearly every part of their life. The most common symptoms of eczema include:
  • Itchy skin
  • Dryness/scaling
  • Red/purple inflamed skin
  • Oozing/crusting
  • Swelling
 In addition to the health effects, eczema has negatively impacted patients in their lifestyles as well like having trouble sleeping, missing school/work, feeling embarrassed, and being bullied.  

How Do You Treat It?

Eczema is caused by many factors, which makes it hard to treat. There is not a current cure for eczema, but luckily, more treatment options have come available as time passes. Researchers do know that one factor of eczema is being triggered by substances. When in contact with a trigger, the immune system tends to overreact. The over-reaction causes the inflammation and other symptoms.  It can be challenging to detect triggers because a flare-up can happen anytime after being in contact. The most common triggers are:
  • Dry skin
  • Stress
  • Irritants like:
    • Metals
    • Smoke
    • Soaps, surface cleaners, and disinfectants
    • Fabrics
    • Shampoos, lotions, and ointments
 For itch relief, we recommend:
  • Avoiding triggers
  • Bathing frequently
  • Moisturizing often 
  • Applying a cold compress
  • Patting the skin, don’t itch
  • Wearing soft, breathable clothes
  • Trying wet therapy
  • Following prescribed treatment
By following these tips, you will be more likely to stay healthy and comfortable in your skin.  

Closing Thoughts 

As you go about this month, please continue to show your support and share your stories to help end the stigma surrounding eczema. For those searching for answers for their eczema diagnosis, learning about the condition and what triggers it, is a great starting point for treating and managing it. The dermatologists at Complete Family Dermatology are here to provide the right tools and support needed to fight eczema. For more information, please reach out to us at 402-423-1111.  

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