Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition. It causes itching and an ongoing cycle of flare-ups that affect the look of your skin and the quality of your life. If you need help with eczema, the exceptional Adult and Pediatric Dermatology team in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Queens, New York, can help. They have years of experience relieving children and adults of their symptoms using customized treatments that improve their skin and prevent flare-ups. Call today or use the online booking feature to make an appointment at the office.
Eczema includes a group of chronic (long-lasting), itchy, inflammatory skin conditions. However, most people use the term to mean one specific eczema.
For example, eczema often refers to atopic dermatitis. Atopic dermatitis, the most common eczema, usually begins in childhood, but the skin symptoms come and go throughout their lifetime.
The exact cause depends on what kind of eczema you have. The outer layer of your skin forms a barrier that keeps irritants, bacteria, and other harmful substances out and holds moisture in. All kinds of eczema break down this skin barrier.
Atopic dermatitis likely begins when the immune system becomes hyperactive and triggers inflammation that damages the skin barrier. The dysfunctional barrier results in dry skin and a rash triggered by irritants.
Itching is the top symptom of eczema. You can also experience:
You need medical treatment to ease the itching. Repeated scratching only causes more skin damage and inflammation, leading to an ongoing cycle of eczema flare-ups.
If you have allergies, your allergens can cause an eczema outbreak. Other common triggers include:
Dry skin alone can trigger a flare-up, as can something as simple as a hot bath or shower.
Your eczema treatment plan can include:
Protecting and strengthening your skin barrier is essential. Your provider teaches you the best skin care regimen and recommends high-quality skin care products that don’t contain irritating ingredients.
The basics include applying a moisturizer within 5-10 minutes after bathing and frequently during the day, using gentle soap substitutes, and taking short showers using warm water.
If allergens trigger your eczema, avoiding your allergens and getting allergy shots help prevent flare-ups.
Your provider can prescribe topical or oral medications like corticosteroids or immunosuppressants. If an infection develops, you’ll need an antibiotic.
In cases of severe eczema, you could qualify for advanced biologic therapy. These medications, injected or administered intravenously, reduce skin inflammation by calming your immune system.
If you or your child needs treatment for an itchy skin rash, call Adult and Pediatric Dermatology today or book an appointment online.