How to Properly Manage Dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis comes from the combination of the Greek words “atopic”, which means strange and “dermatitis”, which means skin inflammation. It is actually a type of eczema. People with this condition have to contend with a skin that, during flare-ups, becomes extremely inflamed and itchy. The uncontrollable urge to scratch often leads to swelling, redness, blisters, cracking, scaling and crusting. This condition is caused by the inability of the skin to retain moisture.
This disease often occurs among young children, even infants. It tends to disappear when they grow older, but there are many cases when it lasts longer and is carried well into adulthood. Occasionally it appears in adults aged 30 and over. The cause is mostly due to exposure to harsh environmental conditions.
How prevalent is it?
The prevalence of the disorderhas been observed to be increasing worldwide. Statistic shows that about 10% to 20% of referrals to skin specialists are Atopic Dermatitis cases. Approximately 10% of young children and infants experience Atopic symptoms and about 60 % of them will carry the symptoms into adulthood though occurrences and intensity will generally be greatly reduced.
Children of families with known history of the disease are the most likely to show symptoms. But environmental conditions like extremely cold and hot climate are also known triggers. There is enough evidence to suggest that it is related toknownatopic disorders – asthma and periodic illnesses like hay fever. Many children who have outgrown atopic dermatitis develop asthma or hay fever later on, further reinforcing its possible connection to atopic disorders.
There are theories about emotional stress being a factor of occurrence. But while it may in some instances trigger or aggravate symptoms, it has not been sufficiently established that stress could be a primary cause for the illness.
Is it communicable?
Can anyone get infected with Atopic dermatitis through close contact with a sufferer? The answer is no, it cannot infect others. Unless the sufferer, a young child perhaps, has the Atopic skin infections like staph or cold sores, coming in close contact with him or her should not cause concern.
Atopic dermatitis is incurable but it can be managed, so that its symptoms won’t appear more frequently and with devastating intensity. There are protective medicines and measures that can inhibit the occurrence of rashes and control the itching three weeks from the time of a flare-up. The treatment will generally depend on the kind of rash the child has. Normally, a moisturizer and corticosteroid medicine combination is used.
The best way to deal with Atopic dermatitis is to limit occurrence of flare-ups and this can be done by avoiding triggers. One simple way of doing this is by keeping the skin moisturized throughout the day. Keeping away from irritants – coarse beddings, harsh detergents and soaps, perfumes, etc - is an effective measure that prevents appearance of rashes and or prevents rashes from getting worse.
Avoiding rash causing allergens like animal dander, dust mites and dust is another measure that helps. There is probably a need to consider diets as certain foods have allergens that can trigger the disease. Consulting a doctor about this is a sensible thing to do.
The disorder can pose a lot of discomfort and when not treated properly it could lead to even more serious health problems. However, Atopic Dermatitis is manageable so there is no reason why people infected with it, especially children, should not be able to live normal lives.