The word “Eczema” comes from a Greek word that means “break out” or “boil over”. Eczema basically means irritated skin. Atopic Dermatitis (which is often also called eczema) is an itchy rash that can appear all over the body, especially on the elbows or behind their knees.
Doctors haven’t yet confirmed why some kids and adults get eczema, while others don’t. There could be several reasons according to the American Academy of Dermatology:
- Family: If your mom, dad, brothers, or sisters have eczema, you might get it too.
- Asthma and allergies: If you have asthma (a disease that can make it hard to breathe) or allergies (when your immune system tries to protect you from normal things that aren’t hurting you), you’re more likely to get eczema.
- Where you live: Eczema is more common in cities, polluted areas and in the northern part of the world.
The rash that shows up from eczema is different for each person and the areas of your body that are affected can also change. Rashes can range from mild to severe and generally, people with eczema suffer from dry, sensitive skin. Eczema is notorious for the intense itching it causes. If you live in a dry climate, such as Colorado, your inflammation can be aggravated.
- Pet dander and saliva
- Household Cleaning Products
- Scratchy clothing
- Excessive Sweating
- An illness, such as a cough, cold or the flu
Good skin care is a key to controlling eczema. For some cases of mild eczema, modifying a patient’s skin care routine may be all that is needed to treat eczema. For other cases of severe eczema, topical creams may be prescribed.
For children with severe eczema, the pain and itching can be debilitating and the outbreaks embarrassing. The National Eczema Association has put together a wonderful brochure made by children who are suffering with the skin disease. You can read “Eczema from a Child’s Perspective by clicking here. The brochure is accompanied by drawings, like the one on the right, that truly show how children feel when they have eczema.
You can request a free packet of educational materials from the National Eczema Association or visit nationaleczema.org for support.