A chronic, itchy condition which affects the skin flexures and usually starts within the first 2 years of life. This condition is more common in children but can occur at any age especially if you have a personal or family history of eczema, allergies, hay fever or asthma. Atopic dermatitis is a long lasting condition and tends to flare periodically, sometimes clearing for years before returning again.
Causes of Atopic Eczema
Healthy skin helps retain moisture and protect from bacteria, irritants and allergens. Eczema is related to a gene variation that affects the skin's ability to provide this protection. This allows your skin to be affected by environmental factors, irritants and allergens more than others.
Signs of Atopic Eczema
Symptoms of atopic dermatitis vary widely from person to person. These symptoms can include:
There is no known cure for atopic dermatitis but there are prescription treatments from your dermatologist and at home remedies to help prevent flares of atopic dermatitis. Tips for at home relief include:
You should see a physician if this rash becomes itchy to where it interferes with daily life or sleep, if you’ve had skin infections due to excessive scratching or you continue to experience symptoms despite use of over the counter remedies.
Your dermatologist will be able to identify this condition by simply looking at the affected skin and going over medical history with you, no testing is generally necessary when diagnosing atopic dermatitis. Your dermatologist may recommend patch testing to rule out possible allergic contact rashes.
It is important to know that treatment for this condition may require various prescriptions used over months to years to control this condition and even with treatment, flares may still occur from time to time. After evaluation, your dermatologist will be able to advise you on the best treatment regimen for your skin. Some treatments that may be discussed include: