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Eczema, or Dermatitis, is the condition where skin becomes inflamed because of irritation from harsh soaps or chemicals, or something the individual has an allergy to.

The most common form of Eczema is Atopic Dermatitis, which occurs in people who have a personal or family history of asthma, hay fever, or eczema. Atopic Dermatitis causes extremely sensitive and dry skin that has an impaired protective barrier to the environment. This causes worsened itching and a rash.

There are three phases of Atopic Dermatitis:

  1. The first phase begins during the first few months of life and typically affects the face and the outside of the arms and legs. The skin will be red, scaly, and itchy during this phase. Infants in this stage of Atopic Dermatitis are often very fussy, don’t sleep well, and may have difficulty with milk and some other foods.
  2. The second phase, during childhood, will affect the elbows and wrists, behind the knees, and the neck. The epidermis will be drier, thicker, extremely itchy, and may create secondary bacterial infections.
  3. The third stage occurs during adulthood, and will appear as a dry, itchy, sensitive rash on the hands.

All phases of Atopic Dermatitis require treatment- the regular and routine moisturization of the dry skin. Treatment may also include prescription topical steroid creams and ointments, as well as non-steroid anti-inflammatory creams and ointments. Often, oral antihistamines are needed to decrease the sensation of itching, and oral antibiotics may be required in the case of infection.


Available at All Golden State Dermatology Locations