Almost everyone world wide will develop some type of rash within their lifetime. For most of us, the rash will bother us for a few days and then will go away on its own. However, for 15% of children and 3% of adults within the United States, they will develop a rash that will continue throughout their lives. This rash is known as eczema.
Eczema is known as Atopic Dermatitis. The word “atopic” describes conditions that occur when someone is overly sensitive to allergens in their environment; ”dermatitis” means that the skin is inflamed, or red and sore.” Eczema is almost always itchy. Itchiness may even begin before the rash breaks out, and adults who have lived with eczema for years know that this is a tell-tale sign of the rash. Affected areas may appear very dry and scaly, and the areas may appear anywhere on the body.
Although there is not a cure for eczema, there are many over the counter drugs, lotions, and heavy creams that claim to cure eczema. While mild cases of eczema may be improved by these over the counter items, severe eczema can actually be made worse by using these. Seeing one of our dermatologists can help you diagnose your skin rash as eczema and can help you find management of the irritative skin condition.
We at Atlanta Medical Dermatology are experts in treating the skin. Our doctors understand the needs of sensitive skin and can offer advice and treatment options for dealing with and healing eczema. One of the first things you must know about eczema is that scratching the skin only makes the rash worse. If you are a parent of a child with eczema your task is to encourage your child not to scratch the irritated skin area. Scratching the skin can make the rash worse and can eventually lead to infection. Parents often rely on their child’s pediatrician to treat his/her eczema, but your child will receive much more specialized treatment and care at our dermatologist office. We will work with you to find which moisturizers, soaps, and detergents are best for the irritated skin, and we will create a plan to help manage the eczema.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Jamie Weisman, Medical Dermatology Specialists