Eczema is a general term for a variety of different types of skin inflammation. The most common type is atopic dermatitis. Others include contact dermatitis, neurodermatitis, seborrheic dermatitis, and stasis dermatitis. Atopic dermatitis, sometimes used interchangeably with the term 'eczema', usually begins in infancy and is thought to be a combination of dry skin, irritable skin, and an immune response. Contact dermatitis occurs when your skin comes into contact with an irritant or allergen such as cleaning products, perfumes or dyes, or certain plants. Neurodermatitis is when something such as your clothing rubs against your skin, causing an irritation. Seborrheic dermatitis (a red rash with yellowish, oily scales) occurs with stress or with other health conditions such as Parkinson's disease. Finally, stasis dermatitis (also known as varicose eczema) is thought to be caused by varicose veins and a buildup of fluid beneath the skin of your legs. The extra pressure against the skin and the impaired ability to nourish your skin may be what causes the irritation, which can lead to sores and ulcers when left untreated.
Eczema is quite manageable and is not contagious. The goal of treatment is usually to prevent itching, inflammation, and worsening of the condition. Your doctor will suggest certain lifestyle changes (such as diet modification and avoiding perfumes and dyes) along with some medications such as corticosteroid creams and/or antihistamines. A sedative may even be added to the antihistamine drugs, to help prevent itching. Immune-suppressants are sometimes used, but are not recommended for long-term use.
Taking short baths or showers is generally advisable with eczema, as is bathing with oatmeal. Of course, using hypoallergenic products and moisturizing frequently is a must.
Facial aesthetics can help alleviate your eczema symptoms, while yoga and massage therapy can help reduce stress that might be exacerbating symptoms. Acupuncture and TCM can help reduce your propensity to itchiness and can reduce the inflammation.
Contact us for a FREE consultation on how natural therapy can help you improve your health and manage your symptoms of eczema.
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