Known for its intense itch, eczema can be an irritating condition to manage and often affects different people in different ways. While eczema is typically thought of as a disease that occurs in infants and children, it can continue well into adulthood.
The unfortunate news is that there is currently no cure. The good news is that there are ways to manage eczema by avoiding certain triggers, using certain medications and participating in new research studies.
So what is eczema?
Eczema is a skin condition that most often presents itself in babies and young children and starts with a very itchy rash. Itching can be so intense that the scratching breaks the skin and causes it to bleed which makes the rash even worse. Symptoms often become less severe as children continue into adulthood, but some adults still struggle to manage the condition.
WHAT CAN BE DONE TO MANAGE THE SYMPTOMS?
Like many allergies, eczema sufferers often experience flare-ups when they are exposed to certain irritants. Pet dander, an itchy sweater, certain detergents and even soaps with fragrance can cause skin irritation.
Learning what causes your flare-ups by keeping a diary of new foods, products, detergents and other new things you are exposed to, can help you determine your triggers.
There are many different over-the-counter skincare products and moisturizers that claim to help eczema. Your dermatologist may also be able to prescribe certain cortisone creams or other medications that can help as well. Research studies are also a way for those with eczema to help determine the causes and test possible new treatment options.
Those that participate in a research study are seen by a board-certified dermatologist, have access to possible new treatment options and are compensated for time and travel.