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Eczema

Eczema

When your skin becomes inflamed or irritated, it could be due to eczema. This is actually the term for a group of medical conditions of this kind where atopic dermatitis or atopic eczema is the most common ones. When you have atopic eczema, what it means is that you would have the tendency to develop into other allergic conditions.

Prevalence
Eczema is one of the most common skin diseases which can happen to anyone. It is very common among infants because mainly because of their skin sensitivity. It has been reported that eczema mostly affects about 10 to 20% of infants while the percentage is lower among older people. This is one disease which can be controlled and cured which is why a lot of people often ‘forgets’ that they have this condition when they reach adulthood.

Prevention
In many ways, eczema can be the initial cause for certain types of allergies which means that it could lead to more disturbing conditions. It can be caused by a variety of reasons and because the skin is the most exposed organ, the best way to prevent this is to maintain good skin hygiene. Portable hand wash would be ideal where you should moisturize your skin as frequent as possible. An eczema outbreak can occur anytime which would be difficult to avoid but if you can reduce sudden changes in temperature or overheating for the skin, it can lessen the likelihood of this condition. Besides that, eczema has been linked with stress whether at work or in life, so this should be reduced as well.

Diagnosis
To check if you have eczema, your doctor can very much tell by looking at the condition of your skin. Besides that, the usual diagnosis will involve asking you questions pertaining to your family history and your experience leading to this condition. The doctor might need to run allergy tests to find out what which allergen is causing the reaction where this is a very common test for children. In order to obtain an accurate diagnosis, you might have to be referred to a specialist. Patch testing could be carried out to test for skin allergies while you could go through supervised food challenges to determine which type of food your skin is allergy to.

Specialists
In most cases, your family doctor will be able to tell if you have eczema. This is because your physician has a clear understanding of your family’s medical history as well as your past record to ascertain the reason of this reaction. Common medicated creams will be used but if treatment does not work, you might be referred to a skin specialist or a dermatologist. If you need further treatment to look into how your body is reacting to its allergies, an allergist might be required.

Symptoms
Eczema is a skin condition which means that its symptoms can be easily seen. It can be assumed that the spot of your skin which has eczema is always itchy. So if you are experiencing itchiness around the face, back of your knees, hands or feet, then it could be an early sign of eczema. In some cases, the itch could happen even before the rash appears and when they do, it could be a dry, thickened or scaly patch and in some cases could be reddish too. Such patches can happen anywhere. Hence, if you have a known history of rashes or allergy reaction, any abnormal patch would be a cause for concern.

Medication
Itching will always drive you to scratch and if you bruise your skin, it could cause infection and that could be another condition to treat. If you have eczema, your doctor will prescribe medicine to help in relieving the itch. Eczema conditions include dry skin and itches where you will need to apply creams to keep the skin moist for as long as possible. You can purchase creams that have corticosteroids which helps to lessen the inflammation while calamine lotion helps to reduce the itch as well. Besides that, you can take antihistamine medicine which helps to overcome allergy reactions. Tar treatment could be used to reduce this as well and if your body does not respond to the medication, you might be prescribed with cyclosporine. For mild-to-moderate eczema conditions, you might be prescribed with topical immunomodulators like Eidel and Protopic creams.

Home Treatment
At home, ensure that you take foods which are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which can help to reduce inflammation and improve your body’s reaction to allergies. This can be found in foods like salmon, tuna, mackerel as well as from health supplements. If you can, take flaxseed oil with your salad.

There are many types of supplements that you can take to minimize your risk of skin problems. Meanwhile, the herb gotu kola can be applied externally which is known to ease itchiness while it can be made into a tea beverage as well. Treating eczema can be effective by ensuring that you are taking enough zinc in your daily diet. You should take 30mgs of zinc daily while Vitamin E and Vitamin A can both help in reducing the effects of this skin disease as well. Vitamin E helps to counteract to itch and dryness in the skin while Vitamin A helps to reduce inflammation.

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Reference
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/leukemia/basics/treatment/con-20024914

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/14417.php#tests_and_diagnosis_of_eczema

http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/skin_hair/eczema_treatment_003760.htm