top of page

Eczema: Understanding a Common Skin Condition

Screenshot 2023-10-02 131649.jpg

Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a prevalent skin condition that affects people of all ages. It is characterized by red, itchy, and inflamed skin patches that can cause discomfort and distress. In this article, we will delve into the signs and symptoms, causes, treatment options, prevention strategies, and some intriguing facts about eczema.

Signs and Symptoms

Eczema can manifest in various ways, but the most common signs and symptoms include:

  1. Itchy Skin: Pruritus, or intense itching, is the hallmark symptom of eczema. The itching can be severe and lead to scratching, which can exacerbate the condition.

  2. Redness and Inflammation: Affected skin areas typically appear red and swollen due to inflammation.

  3. Dryness: Eczema-prone skin often becomes dry and may develop scaling or flaking.

  4. Rash: Eczema rashes are characterized by raised, bumpy, or blister-like patches. These may ooze or crust over if scratched.

  5. Thickened Skin: In chronic cases, the skin may thicken and become leathery, a condition known as lichenification.

  6. Sensitive Skin: People with eczema often have sensitive skin that reacts to irritants, allergens, or environmental factors.


The exact cause of eczema remains unclear, but it is believed to result from a combination of genetic, environmental, and immune system factors. Some contributing factors include:

  1. Genetics: A family history of eczema or other allergic conditions, such as asthma or hay fever, increases the risk of developing eczema.

  2. Immune System Dysfunction: Eczema is associated with an overactive immune response to triggers, which can lead to inflammation and skin symptoms.

  3. Environmental Factors: Allergens, irritants, extreme temperatures, and stress can trigger or exacerbate eczema flare-ups.


Effective management of eczema involves a combination of strategies:

  1. Emollients: Regularly applying moisturizers helps keep the skin hydrated and minimizes dryness and itching.

  2. Topical Steroids: These anti-inflammatory creams or ointments are prescribed by healthcare providers to reduce redness and itching during flare-ups.

  3. Antihistamines: Over-the-counter or prescription antihistamines can help relieve itching and improve sleep.

  4. Avoiding Triggers: Identifying and avoiding triggers such as allergens, harsh soaps, and irritants can prevent flare-ups.

  5. Prescription Medications: In severe cases, systemic medications like oral corticosteroids, immunosuppressants, or biologics may be recommended.


While eczema cannot always be prevented, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of flare-ups:

  1. Moisturize: Keep your skin well-hydrated with hypoallergenic moisturizers.

  2. Identify Triggers: Work with your healthcare provider to identify and avoid triggers that exacerbate your eczema.

  3. Gentle Skin Care: Use mild, fragrance-free soaps and detergents. Opt for lukewarm rather than hot showers.

  4. Avoid Scratching: Keep nails short to prevent skin damage from scratching. Wearing cotton gloves at night can also help.


  1. Common Childhood Affliction: Eczema often begins in infancy or childhood, affecting approximately 10-20% of children.

  2. Global Prevalence: Eczema is a global issue, with rates varying by region. It affects millions of people worldwide.

  3. Not Contagious: Eczema is not contagious. It cannot be spread from person to person through physical contact.

  4. No Cure, but Manageable: While there is no cure for eczema, it can be effectively managed with proper care and treatment.

  5. Emotional Impact: Eczema can have a profound impact on an individual's emotional well-being due to its visible nature and discomfort.

In conclusion, eczema is a common skin condition with a range of signs and symptoms, potential causes, and effective treatment options. By understanding this condition and taking proactive steps, individuals can better manage eczema and improve their quality of life.

Talk to us about your condition

Please book with us to discuss the best management for your condition.

bottom of page