Eczema is a skin condition caused due to hyperactive immune response triggered by various factors be it inside the body or outside environment.
It results in skin inflammation, itchiness, redness or may cause pain in some cases. Eczema can be of different types affecting palms, hands, feet, scalp, head, face, and legs. Eczema impinges its effects differently among people. Therefore, its triggers are different too. Some of the day-to-day phenomena triggering eczema are:
- Dry skin: Overly dry skin can easily become rough, scaly, firm, and inelastic which can cause eczema.
- Irritants: Daily use products like soaps, detergents, shampoos, disinfectants etc. can cause skin burns, itching, dryness and rashes, resulting in eczema. Also, some natural liquids like fruit and vegetable juices can also cause skin irritation.
- Allergens: Pets, dust mites, pollens, and mold can also trigger eczema.
- Microorganism: Virus, bacteria, and fungi are few common causes of eczema.
- Climate condition: Extreme environmental conditions like too hot or cold weather, humidity (high or low), sweating after exercise can also trigger eczema.
- Food: Dairy products, nuts, wheat, soy products etc. can also lead to eczema related inflammatory response.
- Stress: Even stress can trigger eczema in some people. Although the exact cause is not known, the symptoms get worse with increased stress in some people.
- Hormones: Hormonal imbalance, especially in women, can cause eczema flares ups in some cases.
- Genetics: Besides physical and environmental factors, genetics can also be a cause of eczema. For example, children with the family history of atopic dermatitis, asthma, hay fever are more prone towards developing eczema.
Eczema is not contagious, and the treatment options depend on the severity of the condition. One can try home remedies like taking lukewarm bath, applying moisturizers at regular intervals, wearing cotton and soft fabrics, using mild soaps and avoiding humid environment will help in treating eczema.
There are several medications available for the condition, talk to your dermatologist for the right prescription.
Topical Corticosteroid creams and ointments: These ointments are anti-inflammatory and help in relieving skin inflammation and itchiness.
Systemic Corticosteroids: These are available in the form of injections and tablets. This is prescribed only when topical corticosteroids fail to provide relief.
Antibiotics, antiviral, antihistamine can be prescribed by your dermatologist depending on the condition and symptoms.