The everyday struggle of living in the skin with atopic dermatitis implies redness, itching, and aggravated normal functioning. Most people heard of it, but a lot of us don't know the specifics. Let this be your source of information about atopic dermatitis, its symptoms, and proper treatment.
What is Atopic Dermatitis?
Atopic dermatitis is quite an uncomfortable condition where skin barrier dysfunction, immunological factors, and environmental factors can all lead to dry, itchy skin and periodically flare-ups
This chronic inflammatory condition is associated with seasonal allergies, asthma, and hay fever, and people who have them or have a family member that does, are more likely to develop Atopic dermatitis.
Signs and Symptoms
It typically begins in childhood, throughout the first six months. It can improve with years but it can also be severe and long lasting.
People with atopic dermatitis can get rashes anywhere on the body:
- inside the bend of the elbows and knees
- upper chest
- wrists and ankles
Those rashes may ooze and bleed when scratched, and due to that, the skin can become vulnerable and more prone to infections. In some cases, it can come to an overgrowth of bacteria, viruses, and yeast.
Unfortunately, atopic dermatitis can greatly affect the quality of life.
Constant itching can impact the sleep quality of both children and adults. Children can be teased by their peers and feel self-conscious about the way their skin looks and feels. This may lead to other problems like lack of will to socialize or play sports, which are of much importance, especially for children.
There is no cure for this problematic condition but there are treatments, self-care measures, and prevention of flare-ups
In milder cases, avoiding triggers, regular and appropriate skincare routine, and management of stress can help with managing the condition.
If these methods are not working then there is a need for some specific treatments like for example topical corticosteroid treatment.
There are many moisturizers out there, and the choice can depend on the season, degree of dryness, and personal preference.
They can be in the form of creams, ointments, lotions, and gels.
Creams are often well tolerated and not too greasy.
Ointments have a high lipid formulation and due to that the highest moisturizing ability of all the formulations. They are more occlusive and can cause less stinging than gels. The only problem is that some patients may find ointments too occlusive, uncomfortable, or sticky.
Gels can be drying in some cases.
Lotions are often used in areas where drying is not so problematic, because they contain a higher amount of water than oil and more easily evaporate.
Moisturizers that contain irritants like perfume should be avoided at all costs.
Browse our eczema creams to find what works best for you!
Vitamin E may improve the symptoms and the quality of life in patients with atopic dermatitis, as well vitamin D, which has a potentially significant role in reducing the severity and improving the symptoms of atopic dermatitis.
Reduction or avoidance of triggers can contribute plenty to the improvement of atopic dermatitis.
Triggers can be many things, like stress and harsh soaps for example.
The idea is to identify them and then avoid them or reduce contact with them.
Well known triggers for atopic dermatitis include:
- reduced humidity
- harsh detergents and soaps that mess with the skin's pH
- fabric softeners
- wool or nylon clothing
- abnormal temperature or sudden changes in temperature
Most comfortable clothes for people with this condition are made of cotton or corduroy. Try Eczema Clothing for even more comfort and relief.
Showering and bathing should be limited to 10 to 15 minutes.
And when talking about showering, lukewarm water is definitely a much better choice than hot water.
A gentle pat drying with a soft towel is also an important part of self-care in people with atopic dermatitis.
As treatment and care at home have a big effect on bettering the condition, it is preferable that people affected by atopic dermatitis have the information about their condition available, and explained by a medical professional, so they can have a better understanding of how to help improve it.
Support groups are also one of the things that might help, and they showed significance, especially on the psychological part.
They can have an impact on mood and quality of life as well as improvements in the condition itself.
Topical corticosteroids are the most often prescription therapy for both adults and children. They are prescribed for the treatment of inflammatory symptoms and signs of atopic dermatitis including flares and itchiness.
When bacterial infections occur, doctors can prescribe the use of topical or oral antibiotic therapy or in some cases both.
But to prevent the development of antibacterial resistance this should be limited to short-term use.
Histamine and other mediators are released when scratching occurs, which worsens the itch.
Therefore people with atopic dermatitis may have trouble sleeping and if they do manage to fall asleep their sleep quality is poor.
Both sedating and non-sedating oral antihistamines can be prescribed but the sedating oral histamines (eg, hydroxyzine, diphenhydramine, doxepin) have been shown to improve patient sleep quality.
In cases where topical medication doesn't work, phototherapy can be a good therapeutic option. It may be used alongside topical corticosteroids and the use of both oral and topical psoralen with UV light therapy has been shown to reduce itchiness within the first 2 weeks of treatment.
For the best results and the improvement of atopic dermatitis, there needs to be a synergy between stress relief, skincare, and prescribed treatment. Avoid situations that will stress you out, use fragrance-free moisturizers and be persistent. The improvements may vary because we are all unique and our skins can have different needs. But all in all, when there is no cure for something like this, apart from prescribed treatments, it is of great importance to take care of your skin properly, and Eczema relief store can offer many great options that can soothe your skin.