All About Eczema

Ezcema is a very common skin condition which many people experience at some stage of their life. While it can be easily treated, it is also very persistent and, at times, very painful. Recognising what triggers your eczema will ultimately help you keep it under control.

So what is exactly is it?

According to the Eczema Association, eczema is a “recurring, non-infectious, inflammatory skin condition affecting one in three Australasians at some stage of their lives”. Often eczema flares up in babies and early childhood, evidenced by red, dry, itchy skin. In severe cases, the skin will bleed and weep. Most children grow out of eczema, but for people with adult onset eczema, brought on mainly through medication use, allergens and stress, it can be more difficult to treat. Some simple changes in the way you live will help eradicate the uncomfortable and unsightly skin condition. Left untreated can lead to infection.

What causes it?

It is often a hereditary condition, particularly with people who suffer from hay fever, asthma and allergies. Eczema can flare up due to a variety of reasons, but by recognizing your triggers including certain foods, over-washing, pollens, dust mites, climate change, animal dander, medicine and stress, it makes it easier to control.

How do you treat it? 

The website Eczema.com.au says the most important aspect of treating eczema is to “keep your skin moisturized” while avoiding anything that dries out the skin like soap, dyes, perfumes and chemicals. Also by recognizing, and then avoiding, your triggers it helps to reduce the prevalence of eczema.

How do you manage it?

The Eczema Association suggests :

  • Wear cotton next to your skin to help reduce sweating.
  • Bathe in warm water with soap substitutes.
  • After washing, pat the skin dry and then moisturize with a suitable eczema cream.
  • Use hypoallergenic products and avoid anything perfumed.
  • Keep fingernails short or wear mittens while sleeping to avoid scratching.
  • Take antihistamines at night to aid in reducing the itchiness.
  • Be aware of climate changes – over-heating, frosty weather, low humidity and central air conditioning systems can all trigger eczema. Use a humidifier in dry or heated rooms to keep the air moist.

Some simple changes to the way you live and consistent treatment regimes will help you or the eczema sufferer in your life eradicate the painful skin condition. If you need further information about eczema, contact your doctor and establish a treatment plan.