What Are Lymph Nodes
Lymph nodes are soft tissue nodules that are bean-shaped, joined by lymph vessels and other lymph organs to form the lymphatic system, which is part of the immune system. Lymphocytes in the lymph nodes fight against bacteria and other undesirable substances which have been carried into the lymphatic system from other parts of the body, via the lymphatic fluid.
There are hundreds of lymph nodes all over our body, some nearer to the skin, and others deep within the body. The lymph nodes that we are able to feel are in the neck, underarms, chest, abdomen, and groin area, because these are where lymph nodes occur in more obvious clusters.
When there is an infection, lymph nodes swell because white blood cells multiply to fight the foreign substances, and also partly because of inflammation.
Atopic Eczema On The Arms
People with atopic eczema experience redness in different areas of the body depending on their age. The arms are among the most commonly affected areas across all age groups.
Patches appear primarily on the outer arms in infants, on the elbow folds and wrists in children, and on the crook of the arms in adults .
Wear suitable clothing
What Does Eczema Look Like In Children
- Dry skin your child will have slightly dry skin with a rough texture. You may be able to see and feel tiny white bumps as you run your fingers across the skin.
- Dry patches you may see scattered, scaly, dry, white patches anywhere on the body.
- Flare-ups from time to time you will see some areas of the skin become more irritated and flare up due to eczema. These will look like raised, red, slightly oozing patches. Flare-ups generally occur near skin creases most commonly the inside of the elbows and behind the knees, but also in the neck, wrists and hands, and feet. An eczema rash can also occur on the trunk. One unique aspect of eczema is that it usually does not affect the diaper area.
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What Is An Eczema Flare
- Inflamed reddish brown or gray patches, especially on your hands, feet, chest, neck, and inside the bends of your elbows and knees
- Serious itching that worsens at night
- Dry skin that could get raw or swollen from scratching
- Small raised bumps that might crust or leak fluid
- Skin that thickens and cracks
These symptoms may go away for a while, then flare up again.
You may have chronic, or long-lasting, eczema. Or it might just flare up after you touch something or in certain settings.
Animal Bites And Stings
Bites from small animals like insects can be the reason for small itchy bumps on the arms. Though common, insect bites cause a skin rash. Bites often leave your skin swollen or with redness. Some insects can cause an itchy rash of small red bumps.
Common biting insects or animals include spiders, mosquitoes, bedbugs, fleas etc.
On the other hand, a string such as wasps and bees can result in allergic reactions . Individuals who are allergic to the substance injected into skin fall victims of bumpy skin rash.
Bites from insects can only be addressed well if the specific insects or animals are recognized or bites identified correctly. Therefore, antibiotics cannot help in treating rashes from insect bites.
Your physician will help you identify the bites or recommend a suitable method of overcoming rashes caused by stings.
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Eczema Symptoms & Signs
Eczema is an inflammatory condition of the skin that is very common. There are different types of eczema, including atopic dermatitis, contact eczema, neurodermatitis, allergic contact eczema, and others.
Symptoms, signs, and severity can depend upon the exact type of eczema that is present. The location of the skin inflammation also varies according to the type and cause of eczema. Signs and symptoms associated with eczema include patches of chronically itchy, dry, thickened skin, usually on the hands, neck, face, and legs, inner creases of the knees and elbows. If the irritated areas are scratched, dry patches of skin and open sores with crusts may develop and may become infected.
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.
- Worsening of eczema following scratching
How To Use Emollients
Use your emollient all the time, even if you’re not experiencing symptoms.
Many people find it helpful to keep separate supplies of emollients at work or school, or a tub in the bathroom and one in a living area.
To apply the emollient:
- use a large amount
- do not rub it in smooth it into the skin in the same direction the hair grows
- after a bath or shower, gently pat the skin dry and apply the emollient while the skin is still moist to keep the moisture in
You should use an emollient at least twice a day if you can, or more often if you have very dry skin.
During a flare-up, apply generous amounts of emollient more frequently, but remember to treat inflamed skin with a topical corticosteroid as emollients used on their own are not enough to control it.
Do not put your fingers into an emollient pot use a spoon or pump dispenser instead, as this reduces the risk of infection. And never share your emollient with other people.
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Bathing Moisturizing And Wet Wraps
People with eczema tend to have very dry skin in general. This is because the disease causes defects in the stratum corneum, or the skin barrier. The skin barrier is the outermost layer of the skin that serves a dual purpose: it protects irritants, bacteria, viruses and allergens from getting into our bodies and it keeps moisture from getting out. Genes, skin trauma such as from scratching or rubbing and inflammation caused by the immune system can all contribute to this defective or leaky skin barrier in people with eczema.
The most effective way to treat dry itchy skin is to give it the moisture it needs and help it to retain it. Proper bathing and moisturizing are important for this reason especially if you have eczema. The best way to replace and retain moisture in the skin is to moisturize immediately after taking a bath or shower. Download our step-by-step eczema care fact sheet.
Key Points About Atopic Dermatitis
- Atopic dermatitis is commonly called eczema.
- Its an inherited and chronic skin disorder that is most common in infants or very young children.
- Atopic dermatitis causes dry, scaly, red skin that has red bumps that open and weep when scratched.
- Its important to find and avoid things that make atopic dermatitis worse. Triggers include stress, high or low temperatures, bacterial infections, fabrics such as wool, and detergents.
- The goals of treatment are to reduce itching and inflammations of the skin, to keep the skin moisturized, and prevent infection.
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Home Remedies For Eczema
Home remedies for eczema can be simple or complex. The easiest, most effective treatment is to make changes to avoid or remove whatever is causing the allergic reaction. But try not to expect a quick response. Eczema is easier to control than cure.
Here are some things you can try on your own to ease the irritation of eczema.
Change your laundry detergent or fabric softener. Liquid detergents may be less irritating than powders or tablets. Use an extra rinse cycle when you wash to remove residue.
Put on a cool compress. Holding a clean, damp cloth against skin can ease itching.
Take lukewarm showers or baths for no more than 10 or 15 minutes to prevent dry skin. Dry yourself very carefully and apply moisturizing lotion all over your body.
Add colloidal oatmeal to the bath or as a paste on your skin. This finely ground oatmeal helps with itchy, dry skin. Or try a baking soda bath or paste.
A mild solution of bleach and water may ease inflammation and itching, as well as killing the bacteria that can cause skin infections when you have eczema. Add a half-cup of household bleach to a full tub of water, soak for 10 minutes, and rinse. Talk to your doctor before giving this a try because chlorine can cause problems for some people.
Add apple cider vinegar to bath water. Use an amount between 1-2 cups.
Moisturize your skin twice a day. But avoid lotions with fragrances or other irritating ingredients.
What Is Atopic Dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis is a chronic skin disorder. It causes dry, itchy, scaly patches on the skin, often on the face and scalp in babies. Its most common in infants or very young children. Most will show signs of the condition in the first year of life. Symptoms may last until the teens or adulthood. It rarely starts in adulthood. Atopic dermatitis is not contagious.
Atopic dermatitis tends to run in families. This suggests a genetic link. Its also associated with asthma and allergies. These are immune hypersensitivity disorders.
Treatment for this condition is aimed at calming the skin inflammation, decreasing the itching, and preventing infections. Good skin care and medicine to control itching and infection are used.
Atopic dermatitis is often called eczema.
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What Products Should I Avoid If I Have Eczema
You should avoid any ingredients that you have a known allergy to and anything that has irritated your skin previously, Dr. Chan said. Common products that can do this are acne products with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. I also would avoid high percentage AHAs.
Be sure to note that developing a skin allergy is higher when you have atopic dermatitis, so avoiding fragrance when you can is a good idea, especially during an active flare.
How Can Parents Help
Help prevent or treat eczema by keeping your child’s skin from getting dry or itchy and avoiding triggers that cause flare-ups. Try these suggestions:
- Kids should take short baths or showers in warm water. Use mild unscented soaps or non-soap cleansers and pat the skin dry before putting on cream or ointment. Teens should use unscented makeup and oil-free facial moisturizers.
- Ask your doctor if it’s OK to use oatmeal soaking products in the bath to help control itching.
- Kids should wear soft clothes that “breathe,” such as those made from cotton. Wool or polyester may be too harsh or irritating.
- Keep your child’s fingernails short to prevent skin damage from scratching. Try having your child wear comfortable, light gloves to bed if scratching at night is a problem.
- Kids should avoid becoming overheated, which can lead to flare-ups.
- Kids should drink plenty of water, which adds moisture to the skin.
- Get rid of known allergens in your household and help your child avoid others, like pollen, mold, and tobacco smoke.
- Stress can make eczema worse. Help your child find ways to deal with stress .
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What Causes Infant And Toddler Eczema
As stated above, eczema is a mixture of dry skin and allergies. The cause is mainly genetic an inborn tendency toward dry skin and allergies. There is no way to change these genetics. The important issue is not what causes eczema in the first place, but what allergens and skin irritants your child is exposed to that are triggering the flare-ups.
Living With Atopic Dermatitis
The following steps can help manage atopic dermatitis:
- Avoid triggers
- Take brief baths or showers using lukewarm water.
- Practice good skin care.
- Dont use harsh soaps. Ask your healthcare provider to recommend a brand.
- Dress in light clothes. Sweating can make atopic dermatitis worse.
- Use a good moisturizer at least once a day. Ask your healthcare provider to recommend a brand.
- Avoid scratching the affected area.
- Minimize stress.
- Make lifestyle changes that prevent flare-ups.
- Avoid skin products that have fragrances and dyes
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How To Use Topical Corticosteroids
Do not be afraid to apply the treatment to affected areas to control your eczema.
Unless instructed otherwise by a doctor, follow the directions on the patient information leaflet that comes with your medicine.
This will give details of how much to apply.
Most people only have to apply it once a day as there’s no evidence there’s any benefit to applying it more often.
When using a topical corticosteroid:
- apply your emollient first and ideally wait around 30 minutes until the emollient has soaked into your skin, or apply the corticosteroid at a different time of day
- apply the recommended amount of the topical corticosteroid to the affected area
- continue to use it until 48 hours after the flare-up has cleared so the inflammation under the skin surface is treated
Occasionally, your doctor may suggest using a topical corticosteroid less frequently, but over a longer period of time. This is designed to help prevent flare-ups.
This is sometimes called weekend treatment, where a person who has already gained control of their eczema uses the topical corticosteroid every weekend on the trouble sites to prevent them becoming active again.
How Is Eczema Diagnosed
There is no specific test used to diagnose eczema. The doctor will look at the rash and ask about symptoms, the child’s past health, and the family’s health. If family members have any atopic conditions, that’s an important clue.
The doctor will rule out other conditions that can cause skin inflammation, and might recommend that your child see a dermatologist or an allergist.
The doctor may ask you to ban some foods from your child’s diet, switch detergents or soaps, or make other changes for a time to see if your child is reacting to something.
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Seattle Children’s Urgent Care Locations
If your childâs illness or injury is life-threatening, call 911.
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Finding The Right Moisturizer
Finding a moisturizer that works can be a challenge. What works for one person may not work for another and as the condition of your skin changes, so can the effectiveness of a product. A manufacturer may also change the formulation of a product periodically as well. Start with the National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance to find moisturizers free of fragrance, dyes and other common allergens. Products on this list are recognized by NEA as suitable for care of eczema or sensitive skin. Moisturizers are classified as ointments, creams, lotions or skin barrier repair creams based on the amount of oil and water they contain. The more oil in a moisturizer, the better it usually is at treating eczema.
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 should I care for the rash if I have a flare-up?
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