Eczema is a skin condition. It is non contagious. This is a recurring and an inflammatory skin condition that causes dryness of the skin, along with itchiness and red inflamed skin patches. The condition is most common in people with a family history of allergies, such as asthma, hay fever or even an atopic disorder.
Symptoms of Eczema
Although eczema affects all ages, it usually appears in early childhood. Hence it is commonly found to affect babies, between the age group of 2 months to 6 months and toddlers. Children usually grow out of this skin condition. In fact, more than half of all eczema sufferers show signs within their first 12 months of life and 20 per cent of people develop eczema before the age of five.
The most common symptoms of eczema are listed below:
- Dry patchy skin
- Recurrent red rash on the face and the knees
- Rough leathery skin
- Intense itchiness of the skin that is not relieved by scratching
- Skin patches that are affected by eczema may show signs of secondary infection by bacteria and viruses
- Oozing of fluid from the affected skin patches in severe cases of eczema
Types of Eczema
Eczema can be classified into several types. The most commonly found types of eczema are listed below:
This type of eczema is usually associated with allergies, hay fever or asthma. The skin condition runs in the family. The person suffering from the condition may show a history of allergies or have a close family member such as a sibling or a parent that is affected by the condition.
When irritants touch the skin, they can produce contact eczema. Some of the common irritants include soap, perfumes, deodorants, powder, dust, sand, mites, bubble bath, cleaning products, carpets and fur.
Varicose eczema affects the lower legs as a result of poor blood circulation. People in the middle ages of life, leading a sedentary life style are more prone to be affected by this type of eczema.
This is a form of chronic eczema and it is limited to the hands. It can be related to atopic eczema or it can occur because of repeated hand washing or exposure to strong detergents and harmful chemical products in cleaning agents. Occasionally, hand eczema is caused by an allergy, such as a latex allergy.