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What Causes Eczema On My Legs

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Varicose Eczema – Itchy Rash near Varicose Veins

In general, one of the best things you can do for eczema is to find a great moisturizer. Lotions can be a bit drying, as they have a higher water content, so board-certified dermatologist and CEO of Curology, Dr. David Lortscher recommends picking a heavier cream with ceramides or petrolatum.

If your skin is particularly dry or if youâre exposed to very cold dry air, you should begin using a thin layer of a heavier moisturizer in the morning to help protect your skin. Moisturizing is the key to improving skin barrier function, resolving symptoms much faster, and reducing relapse with continual treatment.

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Symptoms Of Varicose Eczema

Like all types of eczema, the affected skin becomes:

  • itchy and swollen
  • dry and flaky
  • scaly or crusty

On lighter skin it looks red or brown. On darker skin it tends to look dark brown, purple or grey and can be more difficult to see.

There may be periods when these symptoms improve and periods when they are more severe.

Your legs may become swollen, especially at the end of the day or after long periods of standing. Varicose veins are often visible on the legs.

Some people also have other symptoms, such as:

  • discolouration of the skin
  • tender and tight skin that can eventually become hardened
  • small, white scars
  • pain
  • eczema affecting other parts of the body

If varicose eczema is not treated, leg ulcers can develop. These are long-lasting wounds that form where the skin has become damaged.

How To Prevent Eczema Flare

Eczema is a chronic skin condition which can only be cured until the next flare-up. Therefore, one of the best ways in managing outbreaks of eczema is to take steps to prevent the frequency of eczema flare-ups.

Dermatologist, Dr. Debra Jaliman recommends a few simple tips which can reduce the frequency of eczema outbreaks on your skin:

  • Moisturize your skin regularly throughout the day to keep a protective barrier on your skin and prevent itchiness.
  • Try to avoid sudden changes in temperature.
  • Stress can trigger an eczema flare-up, so try to find ways to manage stress better.
  • Avoid clothing and other fabrics that can irritate sensitive areas of skin that are prone to eczema flare-ups.
  • Avoid soaps and detergents that strip the skin of its protective oils.

Dr. Jaliman also said that certain foods can trigger an outbreak.

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What Can I Expect If Ive Been Diagnosed With Eczema

Nearly half of children with eczema will outgrow the condition or experience great improvement by the time they reach puberty. Others will continue to have some form of the disease. For adults with eczema, the disease can be generally well-managed with good skin care and treatment, although flare-ups of symptoms can occur throughout life.

Diagnosis And When To See A Doctor

Pictures of Eczema on Legs

People who experience symptoms of eczema should see a doctor or dermatologist. Eczema can indicate a new allergy, so it is important to determine what is causing the reaction.

Eczema can also increase the likelihood of staph infections and have a severe effect on a personâs mental health. A doctor can recommend a treatment plan to manage symptoms and flare-ups.

There is no specific test to diagnose most types of eczema. The doctor will want to know the individualâs personal and family medical history. They will also ask about recent exposures to potential allergens and irritants. It is essential that people let the doctor know if they have hay fever or asthma.

The doctor may also ask about:

  • sleep patterns
  • any previous treatments for skin conditions
  • any use of steroids

A physical examination of the rash will help the doctor to diagnose which type of eczema it is.

The doctor may also perform a patch test, which involves pricking a personâs skin with a needle that contains potential irritants and allergens. A patch test can determine whether or not someone has contact dermatitis.

There is no cure for eczema, so treatment involves managing the symptoms and trying to prevent further flare-ups.

Some treatment options for eczema include:

Some general tips that may help to prevent eczema flare-ups include:

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How Is Dermatitis Diagnosed

Your healthcare provider will take a close look at your skin. They will look for classic signs of dermatitis such as a rash, redness, scales, dryness and more. They will ask about the symptoms youre experiencing. Are you itchy? Does your skin feel like its burning? Is your skin dry? Have you come into contact with anything that might irritate your skin?

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Living With Eczema And Atopic Dermatitis

Eczema can flare up when you are under stress. Learn how to recognize and cope with stress. Stress reduction techniques can help. Changing your activities to reduce daily stress can also be helpful.

The area where you had the eczema may easily get irritated again, so it needs special care. Continue to follow the tips provided here even after your skin has healed.

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Questions To Ask Your Doctor

  • What treatment is best for me?
  • Should I use a steroid cream or ointment?
  • What are the side effects from the steroid cream or ointment?
  • Do I need to take any other medicines?
  • What is the best way to prevent flare-ups from eczema and atopic dermatitis?
  • Is there a certain type of soap I should use?
  • My child has eczema. What kind of moisturizer is best for him/her?
  • How can I keep my child from scratching the rash?
  • I have eczema. Will my children have it?
  • How does infant eczema relate to peanut allergy?
  • How should I care for the rash if I have a flare-up?

Viral Rashes Measles Chickenpox And Shingles

How To Treat Eczema Naturally

Common viral rashes are caused by measles, chickenpox and shingles. Measles and chickenpox are childhood infections but adults who did not get immunized against chickenpox can get shingles.

Infection signs common with viruses include.

  • It may be severe or high
  • Runny nose
  • A cough

Viral rashes are contagious in different stages. The viruses can be spread from an infected person to another by skin contact, sneezing, or coughing.

There is an increased infection risk if for example your child did not get immunized.

For instance, the measles rash develops inside the mouth before spreading to the rest of the body including the face, neck, arms and legs. Usually, measles causes itchy red spots. Other remarkable symptoms include high fever, extremely runny nose, cough and watery red eyes.

Shingles are common in adults and normally causes itchy red bumps on the skin.

Treatment, remedies and vaccinations for viral rashes

Most human viral infections do not have known cures. However, there is a need to see your doctor and check out the symptoms. Thereafter, your doctor will give medicines to relieve symptoms such as fever, itching, coughing, etc.

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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.

Yellow Reddish Or Brown Patches On Your Skin

Necrobiosis Lipoidica

This skin condition often begins as small raised solid bumps that look like pimples. As it progresses, these bumps turn into patches of swollen and hard skin. The patches can be yellow, reddish, or brown.

You may also notice:

  • The surrounding skin has a shiny porcelain-like appearance
  • You can see blood vessels
  • The skin is itchy and painful
  • The skin disease goes through cycles where it is active, inactive, and then active again

necrobiosis lipodica.

  • Get tested for diabetes, if you have not been diagnosed.
  • Work with your doctor to better control your diabetes.
  • See a dermatologist about your skin. Necorbiosis lipodica is harmless, but it can lead to complications.

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Treatment Remedies For Eczema

Most eczema types with chronic symptoms are can be treated and managed well with proper skincare regimen. These include moisturizing, keeping the rashes on legs clean and applying antiseptic creams to prevent secondary infections.

Other useful self-care tips for eczema include

  • Avoiding triggers that worsen symptoms or the leg rashes
  • Seek medication from your doctor when experiencing symptoms like severe pain or cracking or bleeding

Emollients And Fire Safety

What is Severe Eczema? (with pictures)

Lotions, creams or ointments used to moisturise your childs skin are also known as emollients.

Emollients are very effective at treating chronic dry skin conditions, such as eczema.

But it is important to be aware of the fire risk linked with them.

Emollients wont cause a fire on their own. But if there is a build-up of emollient residue on clothing and bedding, this can quicken the speed of a fire.

Do not smoke near your baby or allow them near naked flames:

  • while they are wearing emollient
  • if they are wearing clothes or bandages that may have emollient on them

There is a fire risk with all paraffin-containing emollients. There may also even be a fire risk with paraffin-free emollients. There might also be a fire risk with other products that you put on skin over large body areas for more than a few days.

Washing clothing or fabric at a high temperature may reduce emollient build-up. But it might not totally remove it.

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Taming The Immune Response

Prescription skin meds that calm an overactive immune system can treat eczema from atopic dermatitis. Doctors generally prescribe them only for short-term use in people whoâve tried other treatments that havenât helped. They have a black box warning due to a higher cancer risk. So ask your doctor about the pros and cons. A biologic medication called Dupixent, given as a shot, works on the immune system to treat atopic dermatitis.

Further Tips On Support Stockings

  • They are available in different colours, so do ask for the one that suits you best. That way, you are more likely to use them.
  • They should be removed at bedtime and put on first thing in the morning. It is important to put them on before your legs start to swell in the mornings.
  • There are open or closed toe options. Open toe stockings may be useful if:
    • You have painful toes due to arthritis or infection.
    • You have large feet.
    • You want to wear socks over your support stockings.
    • You prefer them.
  • Stockings should be replaced every 3-6 months. Each time you should be measured again, just in case the size needs to be changed.
  • You should always have at least two pairs prescribed so that one pair can be washed and dried while the other is worn.
  • Do not tumble dry support stockings, as this may damage the elastic.
  • They can be made to measure if the standard sizes don’t fit you. This can still be done with a prescription.
  • Support stocking applicator aids are available if you are unable to get them on. You can discuss this with your pharmacist or nurse.

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How Discoid Eczema Is Treated

Discoid eczema is usually a long-term problem, but medications are available to help relieve the symptoms and keep the condition under control.

Treatments used include:

  • emollients moisturisers applied to the skin to stop it becoming dry
  • topical corticosteroids ointments and creams applied to the skin that can help relieve severe symptoms
  • antihistamines medications that can reduce itching and help you sleep better

There are also things you can do yourself to help, such as avoiding all the irritating chemicals in soaps, detergents, bubble baths and shower gels.

Additional medication can be prescribed if your eczema is infected or particularly severe.

  • feet

The face and scalp are not normally affected.

The first sign of discoid eczema is usually a group of small red spots or bumps on the skin. These then quickly join up to form larger pink, red or brown patches that can range from a few millimetres to several centimetres in size.

Initially, these patches are often swollen, blistered and ooze fluid. They also tend to be very itchy, particularly at night.

Over time, the patches may become dry, crusty, cracked and flaky. The centre of the patch also sometimes clears, leaving a ring of discoloured skin that can be mistaken for ringworm.

You may just have one patch of discoid eczema, but most people have several patches. The skin between the patches is often dry.

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Types Of Skin Conditions That Cause Eczema

What is Eczema? – Eczema, Dry skin, and How to Treat

There are at least 11 distinct types of skin conditions that produce eczema. In order to develop a rational treatment plan, it is important to distinguish them. This is often not easy.

  • Atopic dermatitis: This health condition has a genetic basis and produces a common type of eczema. Atopic dermatitis tends to begin early in life in those with a predisposition to inhalantallergies, but it probably does not have an allergic basis. Characteristically, rashes occur on the cheeks, neck, elbow and knee creases, and ankles.
  • Irritant dermatitis: This occurs when the skin is repeatedly exposed to excessive washing or toxic substances.
  • Allergic contact dermatitis: After repeated exposures to the same substance, an allergen, the bodys immune recognition system becomes activated at the site of the next exposure and produces dermatitis. An example of this would be poison ivyallergy.
  • Stasis dermatitis: It commonly occurs on the swollen lower legs of people who have poor circulation in the veins of the legs.
  • Fungal infections: This can produce a pattern identical to many other types of eczema, but the fungus can be visualized with a scraping under the microscope or grown in culture.
  • Scabies: Its caused by an infestation by the human itchmite and may produce a rash very similar to other forms of eczema.
  • Lichen simplex chronicus: It produces thickened plaques of skin commonly found on the shins and neck.
  • Xerotic eczema: The skin will crack and ooze if dryness becomes excessive.
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    Varicose Eczema / Dermatitis

    Varicose eczema happens when high pressure in the veins in the legs pushes our blood into the skin tissue. This causes irritation. Varicose eczema is usually red and very itchy with scaly patches. Sometimes you may have patches that are also weeping or notice reddish brown staining above your ankle. Varicose eczema can be itchy and you are advised not to scratch and this can exacerbate the itchiness and damage or break the skin.

    Gentle Clothing For Eczema On Legs

    Remedywear Bandages for Babies to Adultsfor relieving hard to treat areas like behind the knees or leg eczema. Made with TENCEL and zinc-embedded fibers to quickly soothe irritated and inflamed skin.

    Remedywear Pants for Adults super soft, silk-like fabricthat is both moisture wicking and cooling. These leggings are perfect foreczema on legs, especially for areas that are prone to moisture like behindthe knees. Try using as your dry wrap clothing for a more advanced treatment.

    Remedywear Long Pants for Kidsprevents harmful scratching while providing soothing relief. Perfect for healing leg or ankle eczema, as well tricky spots like behind-the-knee.

    100% Organic Cotton Lounge Pants – availble for women and men, these soft cotton pants are a gentle choice for those with sensitive skin. They’re made with absolutely no elastic, spandex, or latex! Enjoy the irritation-free label and adjustable drawstring.

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    How To Use Emollients

    Use your emollient all the time, even if youâre not experiencing symptoms, as it can help prevent the return of discoid eczema. Many people find it helpful to keep separate supplies of emollients at work or school.

    To apply the emollient:

    • use a large amount
    • do not rub it in smooth it into the skin in the same direction that the hair grows
    • for very dry skin, apply the emollient every 2 to 3 hours, or more often if necessary
    • after a bath or shower, gently dry your skin and then immediately apply the emollient while the skin is still moist

    If youâre exposed to irritants at work, make sure you apply emollients regularly during and after work.

    Do not share emollients with other people.

    Watch Out For Infections

    Eczema Legs

    This is another important matter of concern. Usually, our skins are very sensitive to some infections. Some fungal or bacterial infection can lead to various severe skin conditions that can lead to red lesions in the body. Such lesions due to bacteria or fungi can take time before they are fully healed.

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    How Do Other Treatments Compare To Biologics

    Biologics for eczema can be very effective, but theyre typically offered only when a person has moderate to severe symptoms that havent gone away with other treatments.

    Dermatologists typically prescribe at-home measures, like applying moisturizer or topical calcineurin inhibitors and avoiding known eczema triggers. They may also recommend short-term courses of corticosteroid cream or ointment as the first-line treatment for eczema.

    Over-the-counter antihistamines can also help relieve itching. For many people, that can be enough to ease occasional flare-ups and soothe symptoms.

    If those eczema treatments dont work, a dermatologist may prescribe a systemic treatment, such as:

    • JAK inhibitors
    • methotrexate
    • mycophenolate mofetil

    Most systemic therapies work by suppressing the immune system. While that can help reduce eczema symptoms, it can make it harder for your body to fight other illnesses and infections.

    Biologics for eczema are different in that they target a specific component of the immune system, rather than the entire system. They also dont contain steroids. However, biologics can also cause some side effects, so its important to weigh the risks and benefits of any medication with a healthcare professional.

    While taking biologics, you can still use topical corticosteroids as needed. You can also use topical calcineurin inhibitors on parts of the skin affected by eczema. Be sure to speak with your doctor before taking other medications.

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