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Identifying Eczema and Treating Dermatitis

With dryer weather do you ever notice a change in your skin? Or maybe your skin is always itchy and dry. If you notice a change only during dry weather you may have mild eczema, but if your skin is always itchy, dry and inflamed you likely have a moderate to severe case of eczema. The moderate to severe cases should be seen by a dermatologist as soon as possible so you can begin a treatment plan. In order to be treated, it is important to know what to look for when identifying eczema. A dermatologist from Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute can help identify and treat your eczema.


Identifying Eczema (Dermatitis) and What Causes It

In addition to red and itchy skin, you will notice dry, cracked or scaly skin often accompanied by small, raised bumps apparent on the face, scalp, hands and feet. Unfortunately eczema doesn’t just affect men or just affect women. It affects both genders and can happen as a baby, young child or even an adult. There also is not just one cause of it and the causes of it are not all fully known. When eczema makes an appearance it is likely you are experiencing either atopic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema or seborrheic dermatitis.


Types of Dermatitis

Each type of dermatitis has a different cause.

If you are affected by atopic dermatitis there is a high probability you are born with it. Atopic dermatitis may be related to a defect in the immune system. If your dermatitis presents itself in the form of blisters you are experiencing either seborrheic dermatitis or dyshidrotic eczema. The blisters can be found on your hands, scalp, feet or face. Another type of dermatitis is irritant dermatitis. Like its name suggests, it is caused by things irritating the skin which could include certain laundry detergents or bleach.

Your symptoms and severity of flare ups can help determine the kind of eczema you have. Fortunately, each kind can be treated and you can be given tips from a dermatologist on how to prevent your flare-ups.


Treating Dermatitis

Even though you can tell from looking at your own skin something may be going on, it is a good idea to bring a dermatologist into the mix. A dermatologist can do a biopsy and/or patch test to really help nail down the specific eczema you have and get you on a proper treatment plan. Meeting with the dermatologists at Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute is a great way to begin the diagnosis, prevention and treatment process.

One suggestion they may recommend is taking a shower instead of a bath and using lukewarm water. This can often help soothe any discomfort you are feeling. During your shower, it is recommended to skip standard bar soap and opt instead for a mild cleansing bar to prevent skin irritation. After your shower, moisturizing will help prevent your skin from cracking.

It is also advised to wear soft cotton clothes and avoid wool clothing to reduce skin irritation. Lastly, topical steroids, non-steroid treatments, antibiotics, oral antihistamines, and phototherapy or laser treatments can all be prescribed and given by a dermatologist.

If you’re in Bloomington, Illinois or the surrounding area and you want help identifying and treating eczema, contact the dermatologists at Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute. Our dermatologists can provide you with quality care and help get you the results you need.

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