“That dude on the subway was gross! All he did was scratch that red place on his arm. I was afraid I might catch whatever he had. “
Have you ever been in this situation? Have you ever been the one scratching? If you have you might have Eczema, and if you have Eczema, you need to know how to treat Eczema. That’s what we’ll be addressing in this article.
How to Treat Eczema: What is Eczema?
Eczema is inflammation of the epidermis (outer layer of skin.) It presents itself as:
- Dry Skin
- Flaky Skin
- Scabs (often due to persistent scratching)
- Bleeding (excessive scratching)
- Possible Infection
There are several forms of Eczema.
- Atopic – most common form of Eczema, usually associated with an allergic reaction or irritation; common on the head, neck, elbows, and behind the knees
- Contact Dermatitis – usually associated with contact from an irritating agent; poison ivy, certain metals
- Xerotic – happens as a result of scratching a place of irritation until it turns into Eczema
- Seborrhoeic Dermatitis – closely related to dandruff, and is the main cause of “Cradle Cap” in infants; usually located on the scalp and face (areas with high concentrations of sebaceous glands)
- Other Eczemas– Dyshidrosis, Discoid Eczema, Venous Eczema, Dermatitis Herpetiformis, Neurodermatitis, Autoeczematization
How to Treat Eczema: Start with the Basics
A good scrubbing is often excellent for your skin, and a great start on how to treat Eczema. As we often contract many ailments through the skin, it’s important to bathe properly. HOWEVER, it’s just as important to not over scrub. You get a new set of skin about every 54 days or so. This happens in 2 very important ways:
- Dead Skin Sloughing Off –Bathing, sitting, rubbing – all these remove skin cells that are in the process of falling off. Without sloughing our pores would become clogged, and the dirt would cause great infections.
- Bacteriophage (bacteria eating) – Basically, you are covered with bacteria, and a war is going on between the “good” and “bad” bacteria. As long as you don’t “over scrub” your skin, the good bacteria usually win, and this promotes healthy skin. Too much cleaning and you can kill the good bacteria. This can lead to Eczema.
Once you have it, a moisturizer is a good first step in how to treat Eczema. Dry skin can cause you to scratch like crazy, and this will spread and worsen your Eczema. A good moisturizer can stop the itching and hence the scratching. (Be sure not to use soaps or detergents on the infected area; this can exacerbate the problem.)
How to Treat Eczema: Next Step
See a Doctor! Once done, he may recommend one of these remedies as how to treat Eczema:
Steroids, Ceramides (lipids), and Immunosuppressants can all be applied topically. Steroids and Ceramides help relieve itching and Immunosuppressants keep the body from attacking the irritated area and allowing a buildup of good bacteria.
If topical treatments don’t work, or your Eczema worsens, your physician may step up the intensity on how to treat Eczema. Oral steroids and Immunosupressants can be administered. They are both more powerful in oral or IM form. But with the increase in strength comes an increase in concern for the side effects.
- Thin and Frail Skin
- HPA Axis Suppression – a complex interaction of the hypothalamus and endocrine system dealing with, among other things, the immune system
- Good Bacteria Suppression
- Flu-like Symptoms
- Carcinogenic Risks
As you can see it’s important to know what you’re getting into before you start treatment. Talking with your doctor is key, as some of the Oral Treatments actually require regular monitoring, including blood tests. These risks are sometimes what you need to face in how to treat Eczema.
How to Treat Eczema: New and Alternative Treatments
There are several new and alternative methods for how to treat Eczema. Among them are Light/Phototherapy, diet, and herbal medicines. As always talk with your doctor BEFORE starting any new medical treatment.
How to Treat Eczema: Review
How to treat Eczema? This can be a daunting question, but one that many people ask themselves each day. If you suffer from Eczema, then you know how horrible this condition can be. You can start with good and appropriate hygiene, and progress to topical, and even oral treatments. It may even behoove you to explore newer and alternative treatments. However you answer the question, how to treat Eczema, is one question that will need to be answered.
What is Eczema?
a. A new ladies shaving lotion
b. Inflammation of the epidermis.
c. A new insect species.
d. Another name for Acne
Which is NOT a way to treat Eczema?
a. Scrubbing until there is no dead skin left
b. Leave it alone it will go away by itself
c. Wish upon a Dermatologist
d. None of the above
True or False: Excessive scratching can cause Eczema.
Answers at the bottom of the page!
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Answers: 1) b, 2) d, 3) a