What is Eczema?

Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition affecting the upper layers of the skin. It is a chronic condition that frequently recurs and subsides in severity.

Eczema is non-infectious and cannot be passed from person to person. It does however tend to run in families. It is rapidly becoming one of the most common medical conditions in the world.

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What does it look like?

Eczema is characterized by an itchy red rash. The rash will vary from person to person but it typically features dry, red patches with possible blisters. It may also feature oozing, edema (swelling), scaling and crusts. These may extend into pustules (pus filled blisters) if a secondary infection develops.

Eczema most commonly affects the face and neck as well as the arm and leg folds (behind the knees).

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How do you get Eczema?

The actual cause of eczema is unknown however it is certain that eczema is a non contagious condition. You cannot catch it like you catch a cold or the measles. Most people who develop eczema have a family member who has eczema, asthma or hayfever. This indicates that there is a familial or genetic component to the condition.

Although you do not inherit the condition itself you do inherit the tendency to develop eczema. What actually triggers the skin to break out in eczema will vary from person to person. The most common triggers include various foods, dust mite, pollens, solvents, stress and climatic changes.

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Who gets Eczema?

Eczema can affect anyone however it is most common in young children. It is rare for a child younger than 2 months of age to develop eczema and the condition commonly subsides by the time a child starts school.

Eczema can also affect adults. Some will carry it through from childhood whilst others will develop it for the first time as an adult. It affects males and females equally.

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How do you treat Eczema?

Eczema is a very individual condition, affecting each person differently. Similarly its treatment for each person will vary. However for all eczema sufferers the skin will be more sensitive and vulnerable.

The main aims of treating eczema are to control the dryness and itching. Regular use of moisturizers and emollients is the basis of all treatment. Determining and avoiding trigger factors will also reduce the eczema considerably.

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Can Eczema be Cured?

Unfortunately eczema cannot be cured, but it can be managed. There are many types of treatments available that claim that the product is an eczema cure. But if you have been dealing with this condition for some time you will know that unfortunately there is no such thing as an eczema cure.

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