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Eczema (cont.)

Eczema Home Remedies

Removing exacerbating factors is a good place to start. This may be as simple as changing the laundry detergent or as difficult as moving to a new climate or changing jobs.

Prevent dry skin by taking warm showers or baths. Use a mild soap or body cleanser. Prior to drying off, apply an effective emollient to wet skin. Emollients are substances that inhibit the evaporation of water. Generally, they are available in jars and have a "stiff" consistency. They do not flow and ought to leave a shine with a slightly greasy feel on the skin. Most good emollients contain petroleum jelly although certain solid vegetable shortenings do a more than creditable job.

Avoid wearing tight-fitting, rough, or scratchy clothing.

Avoid scratching the rash. If it's not possible to stop scratching, cover the area with a dressing. Wear gloves at night to minimize skin damage from scratching.

Anything that causes sweating can irritate the rash. Avoid strenuous exercise during a flare.

An anti-inflammatory topical cream may be necessary to control a flare of atopic dermatitis.

  • Apply an nonprescription steroid cream (1% hydrocortisone). The cream must be applied two to four times a day without skipping days until the rash is gone.
  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) in pill form may be taken for the itching. Caution: This medication may make people too drowsy to drive a car or operate machinery safely.
  • Clean the area with a hypoallergenic soap as necessary. Apply an emollient over the topical steroid.

Avoid physical and mental stress. Eating right, light activity, and adequate sleep will help someone stay healthy, which can help prevent flares.

Do not expect a quick response. Atopic dermatitis is controllable but consistency in application of treatment products is necessary.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/22/2014

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Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Dyshidrotic Eczema »

Dyshidrotic eczema is a recurrent or chronic relapsing form of vesicular palmoplantar dermatitis of unknown etiology.

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