Eczema is a form of dermatitis, or inflammation of the upper layers of the skin. The term eczema is broadly applied to a range of persistent or recurring skin rashes characterized by redness, itching and dryness, with possible scaling in more advanced stages. Eczema can be acute, sub-acute or chronic and a variety of treatments exist which can help effectively manage the condition.
Types of Eczema
There are a number of types of eczema. Atopic dermatits is most common in children but can affect adults of all ages. Whilst many children grow out of eczemathey may have a tendency to dry, sensitive skin in adulthood. Other types of eczema include allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis. Recognizing the correct type of eczema is crucial to an effective treatment plan.
Treatment of Eczema
Eczema treatment can be complex and comprises of a maintenance skin care programme to reduce the incidence of flares as well as treatment for the acute episodes. Topical steroids have been the mainstay of treatment for eczema but have recently been subject to some bad publicity causing public concern about their safety. These preparations have been in existence for over 40 years and so the safety profile and side effects are well known. Our doctors are ideally qualified to discuss with you how to use topical steroid treatment in a totally safe manner which will not harm the skin as well as discuss the steroid alternative treatments and put this all in perspective for you.