Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema)


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What is Atopic Dermatitis?

Atopic dermatitis, also called eczema, is a common skin condition that can affect babies, young children, children, teens, and adults. It is characterized by itchy, inflamed, dry, flaky, and rough patches of skin. Scratching eczema will further irritate and inflame the skin, which can cause infections that must be treated with antibiotics.

While there is no cure and the cause of eczema is not yet known, it is believed to be triggered by an overactive immune system that reacts aggressively to irritants. Common triggers of eczema flare-ups may include:

  • Synthetic fabrics.
  • Chemicals in cleaners and detergents.
  • Sweating.
  • Stress.
  • Temperature changes.
  • Food allergies.
  • Animal dander.
  • And more.

Eczema can look a little bit different for everyone, and flare-ups may not always happen in the same areas. Be sure not to itch your skin, as this can lead to open sores and other complications. If you are concerned regarding open wounds or blisters due to scratching, be sure to see a doctor right away.

Atopic Dermatitis Treatment Options

The treatment option that is right for you will depend on the severity of your eczema symptoms and your lifestyle. Dr. Erwin will carefully assess your skin to determine the best treatment option for you. Some of the most popular atopic dermatitis treatments include:

Medications

Antihistamines

Over-the-counter antihistamines may help to relieve itching of the skin. They work by blocking histamine, which causes allergic reactions.

Steroids

Steroid creams and ointments can also relieve itching and scaling. In more severe cases, oral corticosteroids may be prescribed.

Immunosuppressants

These prescription medications prevent the immune system from overreacting, preventing flare-ups. There is also a new medication available called Dupixent, that may be appropriate. 

Therapies

Another treatment option may include light therapy, or phototherapy, which uses ultraviolet light to help prevent immune system responses. A series of treatments are often needed to see results.

Lifestyle Changes

Changes in your lifestyle can help to improve symptoms, as stress can make symptoms worse. Some ways to reduce stress include:

  • Deep breathing exercises.
  • Meditation.
  • Yoga.
  • Listening to relaxing music.
  • Getting enough sleep.

Cold compresses and soaking in a lukewarm bath can also help to alleviate itching. Ask Dr. Erwin about other lifestyle changes that may be helpful.

Ideal Candidates for Atopic Dermatitis Treatment

Anyone with eczema who has symptoms that are bothersome, uncomfortable, or disrupts their daily activities can often benefit from atopic dermatitis treatment. The best way to determine which treatment option is the best for you will be through an appointment with Dr. Erwin, during which she will assess your eczema and symptoms.

Contact Us Today

If you would like to learn more about available atopic dermatitis treatments, contact our office by calling (979) 612-2761 or filling in the online form! We will assist you in scheduling your appointment with Dr. Erwin, which is your first step toward treatment. During your appointment, you will be able to speak with Dr. Erwin regarding your symptoms and concerns, and she will assess your skin to properly diagnose and treat you.