Eczema, also called excema, is a type of disorder where the skin changes, becomes inflamed, and the symptoms can be seen on the skin’s surface.
This inflammation is caused by fluid building between skin cells. In very acute cases you will see fluid seeping from the afflicted areas.
There are many different types of eczema which mainly fall into one of three categories, externally caused, internally caused, and eczema caused by other factors.
In most cases, eczema can be classified based on its appearance, cause, response to treatment, and severity.
The best way to treat and even prevent your eczema is to clearly identify and better understand the nature of your condition.
Eczema Caused By External Factors
Externally caused eczema is also often called contact dermatitis. This is because the skin comes into contact with a foreign substance causing an occurrence of eczema.
However, just as there are different types of eczema, there are different variations of contact dermatitis. Knowing the nature of your contact dermatitis is important in finding the right therapy.
When something comes in contact with your skin and aggravates it causing inflammation, this is caused irritant contact dermatitis.
In these cases, soaps, detergents and related chemicals are normally the primary suspects, but there are plenty of other irritants out there.
Irritant contact dermatitis will normally only appear where the irritant actually touched the skin and will not spread very far.
For example, if your skin is irritated by the metal in your jewelry, such as a reaction to a nickel earring post, then you will only have a reaction where the jewelry was worn, like you ear.
As another example, if your laundry detergent is irritating your skin then you will have an occurrence where your clothes or bed sheets have touched your skin. Allergen contact dermatitis is slightly more complicated than the irritant form.
This type happens when your body comes into contact, either on the skin or taken by the skin, with an allergen and it triggers a severe reaction from your immune system.
This reaction takes place within your skin and is visible on the skin surface. Unlike the irritant version, this version can spread beyond the area where the skin contact actually occurred.
This is especially so if the reaction is to an allergen taken by mouth. This reaction typically takes place soon after coming into contact with the allergen, making it easier to identify.
A final form of externally caused eczema is that caused by physical factors. One of the biggest physical triggers is the mixture of heat and sweat.
You will normally see these outbreaks in cases after excess sweating and in the areas where sweat accumulates, such as behind the knees and around the neck and shoulder area.
Your skin may have the same reaction to frequent rubbing or too much artificial sunlight.
Babies often get this kind of “heat” rash in their diaper area when the heat, sweat, and the contents of a soiled diaper begin to cause a reaction on the skin.
Unlike external eczema types, internal factors can be harder to diagnose and identify a trigger. One of the most common types of eczema from internal factors is atopic dermatitis.
Atopic eczema is normally the result of an extreme immune system overreaction. The outbreaks are typically very inflamed, red, and itch incessantly.
Many times, the skin seeps fluid as well. These patches of eczema tend to spread all over the body.
Atopic eczema can be one of the most difficult types of eczema. It has been very hard for science to determine one trigger and it is suspected that it only occurs as a result multiple triggers.
Many scientists believe that the condition occurs in cases where there is some sort of weakening or defect within the skin or between the skin cells. However, weakened skin alone does not bring about a flare up.
It is believed that hormonal and fatty acid imbalances, especially those caused by a genetic disorder, cause the immune system to overreact through the weakened skin.
Even then, this only happens when an environmental substance triggers the overreaction. This is the key to the difficulty with determining the cause and treatment of atopic eczema.
Atopic is not the only form of internally caused eczema. Dyshidrotic Eczema, or Pompholyx, is very similar to atopic eczema except that it causes severe blister like lesions on the fingers.
The cause of pompholyx still eludes scientists and is believed to be as complicated as the atopic form. Treatment for this severe condition should follow the same course as atopic eczema.
For example, when your body has an overreaction to yeast, such as athlete’s foot, cradle cap, dandruff, or jock itch, then there is an occurrence of Seborrhoeic eczema.
Asteatotic eczema is a very dry skin type that gives the appearance of cracked pavement. It is common in the elderly and is caused by cold temperatures and washing the skin too frequently.
If you have the symptoms of poor circulation in your legs, like swollen ankles or varicose veins then you may ended up with related eczema.
Varicose eczema is a darkening of the skin in your lower legs and stasis eczema is very small red bumps that itch a great deal.
Each of these types should be carefully monitored by your doctor because they can worsen into ankle sores that are difficult to heal.
Some of the more unusual types of eczema are those without an internal or external factor. These types of eczema are rarer, such as neuro dermatitis or lichen simplex.
These conditions occur as a result of nervous licking or scratching. Many people believe that it is triggered by stress or anxiety. A doctor can help you better determine if yours is this type of eczema.
No matter what is causing your eczema, it is important that you get it diagnosed and develop a good therapy plan. A doctor can help you diagnose your condition from the many types of eczema.
He will help you better understand the cause or causes of your condition and will probably recommend some of the standard medical treatments available like ointments, steroids, and pills.
Once you have your standard treatments underway, you should compliment that therapy using natural remedies.
Natural remedies are both treatments and preventative measures which take advantage of the chemical-free, non-toxic organic substances.
These “complimentary therapies” work in conjunction with other treatments to help you find the best relief.
If you would like to know more about how to identify your eczema and which treatments, both standard and natural, will work best then turn to the ebook Eczema Free for help.
It is a very comprehensive guide to the many different forms of eczema, their cause, and their treatment.
Furthermore, it explains the standard medical treatments available for many types of eczema.
Most importantly, it offers useful advice on a wide range of natural remedies from skin ointments to detoxifying food preparation techniques.
Eczema Free will help you better understand your eczema and get you on the path to soothing and prevention.