Recognizing the Causes of Eczema and How to Treat It

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Recognizing the Causes of Eczema and How to Treat It
Recognizing the Causes of Eczema and How to Treat It

Eczema is a form of inflammation of the skin which is characterized by the appearance of itching and red skin rashes. In medical terms, eczema is also known as atopic dermatitis. This condition can be experienced by anyone, but is usually more common in children

Eczema can cause typical symptoms in the form of intense itching and the appearance of rashes in several parts of the body, especially the hands, feet, neck, chest, knees, and body folds, such as the elbows and armpits.

Recognize the Causes of Eczema and How to Treat It - Alodokter

Not only rashes and itching, eczema or atopic dermatitis can also cause various skin problems, such as dry, rough, thick, and scaly skin.

The Cause of Eczema

The cause of eczema is not yet known for certain. However, various studies show that there are several factors that can cause eczema or atopic dermatitis, namely:

Genetic disorders

One of the factors that can cause eczema is a genetic mutation, namely the CARD11 gene. Mutations in this gene can make the body's immune cells called T lymphocytes not function properly, so that the immune system can be disrupted.

In addition, the cause of eczema is also associated with a mutation in the FLG gene that produces filaggrin. Filaggrin is a protein that is important for protecting and moisturizing the top layer of skin (epidermis). Without enough filaggrin, the skin will become dry and ultimately prone to eczema.

History of illness in the family

Inherited genetic traits in the family are also one of the factors that cause eczema. Some studies show that a person will be susceptible to eczema if he has a history of asthma or allergic rhinitis and has a biological family member who also suffers from eczema.

Immune system disorders

The immune system is overactive or overreacts when exposed to allergens or irritants can trigger an inflammatory reaction in the skin. An allergen is a substance, object, or condition that can trigger an allergic reaction. This is what puts a person at risk for eczema or atopic dermatitis.

Besides some of the causes of eczema above, there are also other factors that are believed to trigger eczema or even worsen its symptoms, namely:

  • hormone changes
  • Food allergies, such as allergies to cow's milk, eggs, peanuts, soy, seafood, or wheat
  • Exposure to allergens from the environment, such as cold or heat, dry air, animal dander, dust, cigarette smoke, or plant pollen
  • Use of soaps and cleansers containing harsh and irritating chemicals for the skin, such as detergents and fragrances
  • Uncomfortable and irritating clothing materials, such as wool or synthetic fabrics

How to Treat Eczema Easily

Basically, eczema is an incurable condition. Treatment is done only aims to relieve symptoms that appear. There are many ways you can do to relieve eczema symptoms, from self-care at home to using medicines from a doctor.

The following are some eczema treatments that you can do at home:

1. Cold compress when itchy

When you feel itchy, avoid scratching because it can cause sores and irritation that can lead to infection. As a solution, apply a cold compress to the itchy skin area to relieve the itching.

2. Hot shower

To treat itching and reduce irritation on the skin, you can also take a warm bath. Avoid bathing with water that is too hot because it can make the skin inflamed and dry, so eczema symptoms can recur or get worse.

3. Wear clothes that absorb sweat

Eczema sufferers are recommended to wear clothes made of soft, cool, and absorb sweat, such as cotton. This is useful for preventing excessive sweating which can trigger rashes and itching.

4. Use the right bath soap

When showering, use a mild chemical soap that is free of dyes and fragrances so it doesn't irritate the skin. You are also not recommended to use antiseptic soap because it can cause the skin to become dry and itchy. To be safer, choose a soap product that is labeled “hypoallergenic”.

5. Use a special moisturizer

Using skin moisturizer regularly is important for eczema sufferers so that the skin doesn't dry out and stays he althy. Apply moisturizer 2 or 3 times a day, especially after showering.

For maximum results, use a special moisturizer that contains allantoin, ceramide, glycerin, caprylic, pentylene glycol, niacinamide, panthenol, and sodium hyaluronate.

In addition to keeping the skin moist, special moisturizers with these ingredients can also relieve eczema symptoms, such as dry skin, rashes, and itching. Use the moisturizing product according to the doctor's recommendations or the instructions for use as stated on the packaging label.

While treating eczema at home, you also need to check with a doctor. This is important to do to determine the cause of the eczema you are experiencing, so that the doctor can give the appropriate medication.

The following are some types of medicines that doctors usually prescribe to treat eczema symptoms:

  • Corticosteroids, to relieve inflammation of the skin
  • Antihistamines, to relieve itching and allergic reactions
  • Antibiotics, to treat bacterial infections on the skin
  • Immunosuppressant drugs, to prevent the immune system from overreacting

Eczema or atopic dermatitis can appear and recur at any time. By knowing the cause and how to treat it, it is hoped that this disease will not worsen and can be resolved immediately when the symptoms recur.

If the eczema symptoms you are experiencing still do not go away despite various treatments at home or using drugs, you should consult a doctor to get the right treatment.

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