Is Eczema Contagious?

favorite plus eczema treatmentEczema, also called dermatitis, is a chronic skin condition that makes the skin red, itchy, dry, and cracked. Flare-ups can occur on any part of the body. There are various kinds of eczema, and the affliction differs from person to person.

The two most common types are atopic eczema and contact dermatitis. Eczema is one of the most challenging and distressing skin conditions to manage.

Is eczema contagious?

A person cannot get eczema from interacting with another person who has it. You cannot get dermatitis from a public bathroom or a swimming pool. Atopic eczema is hereditary. Some parents pass on the gene for atopic eczema without ever having this skin problem.

What causes eczema?

Healthy skin is a type of wall that protects our body from the harmful effects of the environment. If you suffer from eczema, your skin lipids break down, reducing your skin’s protective barrier. The skin dries and becomes vulnerable to external irritants and allergens.

Your chance of developing eczema depends on both genetic factors and external circumstances. Most people who suffer from this condition have a family history of allergies. Dermatitis flare-ups occur when the immune system responds to remote triggers that can penetrate the skin.

The physical reaction to certain foods, textiles, or animals often triggers atopic eczema flare-ups. Other known triggers are stress, smoking, sweating, pollen, and cold or dry weather conditions.

Skin contact with a particular substance causes contact eczema. It can be a substance that damages the skin or something that triggers the immune system to react in a way that affects the skin. Irritants include detergents, machine oil, soil, cement powder, plants, and even water.

How do you cure eczema?

Remedy depends on the severity of the symptoms. Clinical tools are available that assist doctors in assessing the severity and extent of eczema. Mild to moderate dermatitis improves with products that moisturize the skin and those containing mild steroids.

Emollients. These come in the form of creams, lotions, and ointments. Apply to keep the skin moist and soft. There are also emollient substitutes for soaps, bath oils, and shower gels that irritate and dry out the skin.

Emollients are only useful on the surface of the skin and don’t tackle the underlying inflammation.

Topical Steroids. When flare-ups become inflamed and itchy, dermatologists often prescribe products containing topical steroids. Steroids are effective in reducing inflammation but do not tackle the underlying cause of eczema flare-ups. They can also dehydrate the skin, and carry a high risk of side effects.

Topical steroids can cause sensitivity to sunlight, stretch marks, and eczema relapses. Therefore, they are only good for short-term control of flare-ups.

Phototherapy. Also called light therapy, it is the treatment of skin conditions with a particular type of light. The most popular kind of phototherapy used to treat eczema is narrowband ultraviolet B (UVB) light. It uses a specific machine to emit UVB light, which is the best part of natural sunlight for treating eczema.

 

Types of Eczema and their Treatments – Part 1

Eczema is the common term for any type of dermatitis. There are several skin ailments that are eczemas. Each type of eczema causes itching and redness, and some even blister, peel, or weep. Certain eczemas can affect most of the body.

Contact Dermatitis

favorite plus dermahealerThis should actually be called an allergic reaction. Once you touch something, and react seriously to it, your skin pores open, causing you to have an allergy. Even light contact on everyday items like animals, grass, soap, or the like can cause it.

Prevention and treatment for contact dermatitis is fairly simple. Clearly, you should stay away from what causes/caused the problem. Use antihistamines to stop the itching, and moisturizers to keep the dermatitis from drying out, and possibly becoming infected. Also, if necessary, your doctor would prescribe you a corticosteroid cream that would help with the inflammation.

Atopic Dermatitis

favorite plus dermahealer phototherapyThis is a common skin infection in children. Kids often get atopic dermatitis in their first year of life. When a child gets it during this time, dry and scaly patches appear on the skin. These patches frequently emerge on the face (especially the cheeks), forehead, and scalp.

Treatment cannot cure atopic dermatitis, but it can control it. Management is also important because it can prevent this type of eczema from getting worse. Treatment for atopic dermatitis would depend on the form of rash you have. Most mild cases can be treated at home with moisturizers. Most of the time, the itching and rashes can be controlled within 3 weeks. For severe outbreaks, you would need to see your doctor for treatment.

Neurodermatitis

When you have this condition, you have this desire to scratch intensely due to problems with the nerves in that part of your skin. Whether the cause is an insect bite, stress, or some other medical disorder, it doesn’t matter. Stopping the itch is the main goal.

There is a variety of treatments for neurodermatitis – from antibiotics to oral or topical steroids. Another option is phototherapy, which is usually reserved for the most severe cases.

Hand Eczema

favorite plus dermahealer phototherapy lampHand eczema is a common condition affecting up to 10% of the population. It is caused by a combination of factors, both external and internal. The irritant nature of various chemicals means that hand eczema is predominantly common in people with jobs involving catering, cleaning, hairdressing, healthcare, and mechanical work. It is an inflammatory ailment, and it is not contagious. Still, it can have a big effect on people’s self-esteem, social lives, and work.

If your symptoms have been present for more than a few weeks and do not appear to be getting any better, you must seek treatment from your doctor. You may get a prescription for a corticosteroid medication to put on your eczema. Use topical corticosteroids only as needed – such as when your hand eczema is aggressively flaring. Prolonged use of these drugs can cause thinning of the skin and other side effects.

Types of Eczema and their Treatments – Part 2