Dealing With Eczema Flares
Eczema is a condition of the skin that erupts in the different parts of the body. As true as the phrase, “Prevention is better than cure” holds, once you have acquired the condition, dealing with it becomes the prime matter of concern. Sometimes, it is the little things in life that help us overcome an ailment. To begin with, you can prevent the flares from doubling up by avoiding friction or rough contact with the area. Try not to scratch or rub the patch of skin in and around the lesions. Avoid wearing clothes that prevent your skin from breathing. Instead, choose light and skin-friendly materials. Observe your cosmetic products and toiletries for a while. If you have recently switched to a new brand or is allergic to a particular skin care product or lotion, identify them and remove them from your cupboard immediately. This method rules out the first cause of most skin irritations.
Eczema is a relatively chronic skin condition that stays for a while until the visible symptoms subside. You may experience flare-ups at different points in time, but it takes a while to leave the body completely. Proper treatment using prescribed medications can help in curbing the ailment. Overall, a good approach to hygiene, skin care routine and a healthy diet can keep eczema at bay.
Hence, once you feel that you have this condition, medical attention is required to have a proper diagnosis.
Importance Of Eczema Treatment
There is growing evidence that allergens introduced into the body through the skin can lead to the later development of food allergy, asthma and hay fever. Aggressively treating eczema in children and taking steps to restore normal skin barrier function may lower the risk of future development of these conditions.
Tips For When You Itch
If you canât take it and you simply must scratch, try not to use your fingernails. Instead, rub, pat, tap, or tightly hold the itchy area. You can also gently pinch your skin.
It helps to keep your nails short so youâre less likely to break your skin if you do scratch. You can also try wearing gloves to bed to protect your skin while youâre asleep.
You can try a few other things to deal with the urge to scratch:
Avoid âitch triggers.â Whether itâs a wool sweater, hot room, or a certain cleaning product, know what sets off your skin, then try to steer clear.
Cool off. A wet compress or cold shower can ease the itching.
Take care of your skin. Dry skin will make itching worse. Donât take long, hot showers or baths. Use a gentle, scent-free hydrating cleanser, and stay away from perfumed products.
Apply lotion. At least once a day, use moisturizing cream to soothe your itchy skin. Your doctor may suggest something that has menthol or calamine in it to cool your skin.
Ask your doctor. If over-the-counter creams donât work, ask about prescription meds. For example, corticosteroids can help ease the itch from eczema and psoriasis. If itâs caused by nerve pain, like with multiple sclerosis, an antidepressant or anti-seizure drug might work.
Watch for infection. Call your doctor if your skin is tender to the touch, begins to smell, or oozes pus.
Washington University, St. Louis: âWhy scratching makes you itch more.â
Cleveland Clinic: âDry Skin/Itchy Skin.â
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Why You Should See A Doctor Instead Of Self
Whenever itching in the genital region happens, the sufferer often accepts its a yeast disease and treats it with an over-the-counter anti-fungal cream. Many times this works, however not all the time.
Rather, the reason for the itch may be basic dry skin, an STD or bacterial contamination, a strain of yeast that requires unique drug treatment, or disturbance by and unfavorably susceptible responses to normal hygiene products, for example, cleansers, creams, and ointments.
In the event that yeast isnt the issue, an anti-fungal cream or ointment isnt always the best treatment. Also, if your skin is constantly itchy and inflamed, you may make the issue worse by putting harmful chemicals and different ingredients in numerous anti-fungal treatments.
That is the reason its essential to see your doctor or dermatologist, especially if an issue endures after youve attempted an anti-fungal cream.
Another normal reaction of men and women with eczema in the genital region is to wash the genital skin energetically, with the idea that this will fully clean it and remove all aggravations. Vigorous cleaning, forceful washing, and rubbing can add to the problem. Until the issue is fully diagnosed, its best to pursue a delicate, healthy skin routine.
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What Is Genital Itching
Itching in the genital region can result from irritation, allergy, inflammation, infection or cancer. Irritation can occur as a result of exposure to chemicals in soaps, feminine hygiene products, perfumes, lubricants, douches, and creams. Similar chemicals can also cause in some people, as can latex. In the case of irritation and allergy, avoiding exposure to the irritant or allergen may be all that is needed for the itching to resolve.
Sexually transmitted infections, such as herpes or trichomoniasis, can cause genital itching, as can other infections, such as yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis. Pubic lice, also called crabs, are sexually transmitted and typically cause genital itching. Scabies, which can be spread sexually or through other skin-to-skin contact, is a contagious skin disease that typically causes itching. Scabies is caused by very small mites and can affect any part of the body.
Tinea cruris, a sometimes referred to as jock itch or ringworm of the groin, can also cause genital infection. People who have cruris may also have athletes foot or .
Genital itching is unlikely to be part of a condition that requires emergent treatment however, it can have several causes, some of which are easily treated and others that can ultimately lead to serious complications. If you have genital itching that lasts for a couple days or more or causes you concern, seek prompt medical care.
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How To Prevent Flares
While there is no medication currently available that cures eczema, there are a few ways to prevent and treat flares.
First, knowing your personal eczema triggers can help you make informed choices around diet and activities. Keeping a journal may help you connect certain foods, weather, products, or activities to flares.
Moisturizing your skin as much as possible can also help, as can bathing after exercising or other high-energy activities.
If your eczema is more severe, your doctor may have prescribed topical and/or immunosuppressant medications to reduce itching. Using these medicines as prescribed can help prevent eczema flares.
What Does It Look Like
The signs of eczema in infants include itchy, dry and scaly skin, redness and swelling of the skin and small bumps that open and weep when scratched. In infants and young children, eczema is usually found on the face, outside of the elbows, and on the knees.
In older children and adults, eczema tends to be on the hands and feet, the arms, and on the back of the knees.Keep in mind that all patches of dry skin are not eczema. The cold, dry outdoor air and indoor heating can dry all babies skin in winter, causing dry patches. In children prone to dry skin, so can the sun, air conditioning, and pool and salt water.
We dermatologists usually say if its not itchy, its not eczema you cant make a diagnosis of eczema unless there is an itchiness that goes with the rash. Babies with cradle cap, also known as seborrheic dermatitis, can also have a wide-spread rash, which is not eczema in itself. But it is common for cradle cap and eczema to co-exist in the first several months of life.
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Choice Of Topical Corticosteroid
There are different strengths of topical corticosteroids that can be prescribed depending on the severity of your eczema. Discoid eczema usually needs a stronger type of corticosteroid than other types of eczema.
You might be prescribed a cream to be used on visible areas, such as face and hands, and an ointment to be used at night or for more severe flare-ups.
What Causes Eczema In Infants And Children
Eczema is brought about by the complex interplay of a genetic predisposition and the childs environment. Many things from the climate to possible allergens can cause eczema to flare. We know that eczema tends to run in the families with a predisposition to other atopic diseases, such as food allergies, asthma and hay fever. Individuals with atopic dermatitis may lack certain proteins in the skin, which leads to greater sensitivity. Parents with eczema are more likely to have children with eczema. However, the exact way it passes from parents to children is still not known. Most children who have eczema will show signs of the condition in the first year of life. It tends to wax and wane in severity.
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Cure : Essential Oils
Tea Tree Oil
If you are suffering from severe vaginal itching, then try tea tree oil. It is one of the best home remedies for treating itching in private parts. If the vulvar itching worsens at night or there is a constant urge to itch causing you to become cranky and irritable, then it is time for you to look for some effective treatment like tea tree oil.
How to use?
- Mix four to six drops of tea tree oil in two tablespoons of freshly extracted aloe vera gel
- Apply the mixture on the irritated area
- Leave it on for around 15 minutes
- After that, wash it off with water
- Repeat this remedy two times a day
- Pour four to six drops of tea tree oil in your bathwater
- Soak in it for around fifteen minutes
- Do this daily to get relief from itching.
Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has strong antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties hence the oil makes it easier to the list of itching vagina home remedies. It eases the irritation caused in the genital area thus reducing the itching. Studies have shown that tea tree oil is quite useful in preventing vaginal candidiasis.
You must use tea tree oil in diluted form only. Direct application of the oil can harm your skin and cause an allergic reaction. Those with sensitive skin must do a skin patch test of diluted tea tree oil before using it.
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Managing Eczema In Winter And Year Round: A Parents Guide
Cold, dry outdoor air and indoor heating can rob skin of its natural moisture in the winter. Red, crusty, dry patches can be common on a babys skin, particularly in winter, and cause concern for parents. Such symptoms can be treated, however, and many babies and children do outgrow the dry, itchy skin of atopic dermatitis, also known as eczema.
We spoke with pediatric dermatologist Katherine Puttgen to learn more.
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What Else Can Cause Itchy Skin At Night
Stress and anxiety can make you feel like scratching, though there may be no cause behind it. Some nerve disorders also trigger a feeling of itchy skin. The nerve disorder itch could be indicative of other ailments like multiple sclerosis, diabetes or shingles.
In rare cases, an itch that wont go away with every other treatment could be an early symptom of cancer. But, this holds true only if it is accompanied with other symptoms such as low grade fever, sudden weight loss and night sweats.
While itchy skin all over the body at night occurs mostly due to dry skin, there are other causes and medical conditions that can cause it. Preventive measures work best in keeping itchy skin at bay. However, there are several home remedies and topical creams you can apply if your skin starts itching every night. Dont forget to consult your doctor in case the problem persists for too long.
Did You Know?
- Those with eczema are more likely to suffer from this condition.
- If you have hypothyroidism, you could have dry skin that leads to itching all over the body.
- With age, the skin gets drier, hence older people are more prone to itching all over the body.
- People living in colder and drier climates have dry skin which is a cause for itching.
Whats The Difference Between Dermatitis And Psoriasis
Psoriasis and dermatitis can appear similar. Both cause patches of red skin. However, in psoriasis, the scales are thick and the edges of those scales are well-defined.
Discuss with your healthcare provider your questions about which type of skin condition you have. You can have more than one skin condition at a time. Treatments for one may not work for the other.
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Eczema In Teens And Adults
While most people outgrow atopic dermatitis by the time they are teenagers, it can persist into adulthood. For others, childhood eczema that had cleared up years prior may reemerge.
Eczema can also develop for the very first time in adulthood this is called adult-onset eczema. Some of the prime years for developing adult-onset eczema include middle age and older. Skin naturally becomes drier as people get older, leaving it more vulnerable.
In teens and adults, eczema classically involves:
- Creases of the elbows
- Around the eyes or on the eyelids
Eczema most often affects areas exposed to allergens or irritants, as well as flexural areas that are easily scratched. Adults may find their skin becomes thickened and leathery-looking in areas affected by the rash.
There are other skin conditions that look very similar to eczema, including contact dermatitis, psoriasis, and rosacea. It’s important to see a healthcare provider if you develop rash symptoms for the first time as an adult to ensure you get the correct diagnosis and treatment.
Rinse Off Immediately After You Go Swimming
Chemicals found in chlorinated pools and salt found in the ocean could be a problem for those with sensitive skin. Just in case theres no shower in sight, bring along a spray bottle filled with water and use it to rinse off immediately afterward, according to the National Eczema Association. Follow up by reapplying moisturizer and sunscreen to protect the skin and keep it from drying out.
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Eczema Coping Tips Diet
In most cases, eczema isnt caused or made worse by diet. If you notice that your eczema seems to get worse after eating a particular food, you may be an exception to this. See your doctor or dietitian for proper allergy testing and dietary advice.Never self-diagnose or you risk depriving yourself of enjoyable and nutritious foods for no good reason. Unnecessarily avoiding certain foods can lead to nutritional deficiencies.
Eczema Coping Tips Reducing Skin Irritation
People with eczema have sensitive skin. Irritants such as heat or detergents can easily trigger a bout of eczema.Suggestions for reducing skin irritation include:
- Avoid overheating your skin. Wear several layers of clothing that you can remove, as required, instead of one heavy layer. Dont put too many blankets on your bed and avoid doonas.
- Dont use perfumed bubble bath or bath products labelled medicated.
- Wear soft, smooth materials next to your skin, preferably 100% cotton. Avoid scratchy materials, such as pure wool, polyester or acrylic. You could try a cotton and synthetic mix material this is fine for some people with eczema. Remove labels from clothing.
- Always wear protective gloves when using any type of chemical or detergent. You may want to wear cotton gloves inside rubber or PVC gloves.
- Avoid chlorinated pools. If you have to swim in a chlorinated pool, moisturise your skin well when you get out.
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Having A Pelvic Examination
You can ask the doctor or nurse to stop at any point if you find it too uncomfortable.
Use A Moisturizer On Your Skin Every Day
Moisturizers help keep your skin soft and flexible. They prevent skin cracks. A plain moisturizer is best. Avoid moisturizers with fragrances and a lot of extra ingredients. A good, cheap moisturizer is plain petroleum jelly . Use moisturizers that are more greasy than creamy because creams usually have more preservatives in them.
Regular use of a moisturizer can help prevent the dry skin that is common in winter.
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General Tips For Coping With Eczema
Other tips to manage your eczema include:
- Keep your fingernails short longer nails are more likely to injure your skin when you scratch.
- If the water in your area is hard or alkaline, consider installing a water-softening device.
- Swim in the sea in warm weather whenever you can seawater is known to reduce the symptoms of eczema.
- Use sun exposure for limited periods for example, when swimming at the beach. This can help relieve eczema symptoms. But be aware that ultraviolet radiation is a risk factor for skin cancer and premature ageing of the skin. Also, if sun exposure causes overheating, this can also aggravate eczema.
When To Seek Medical Advice
See a GP if you have symptoms of atopic eczema. Theyll usually be able to diagnose atopic eczema by looking at your skin and asking questions, such as:
- whether the rash is itchy and where it appears
- when the symptoms first began
- whether it comes and goes over time
- whether theres a history of atopic eczema in your family
- whether you have any other conditions, such as allergies or asthma
- whether something in your diet or lifestyle may be contributing to your symptoms
Typically, to be diagnosed with atopic eczema you should have had an itchy skin condition in the last 12 months and 3 or more of the following:
- visibly irritated red skin in the creases of your skin such as the insides of your elbows or behind your knees at the time of examination by a health professional
- a history of skin irritation occurring in the same areas mentioned above
- generally dry skin in the last 12 months
- a history of asthma or hay fever children under 4 must have an immediate relative, such as a parent, brother or sister, who has 1 of these conditions
- the condition started before the age of 2
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