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What is eczema?

A brief guide to the skin condition that affects numerous people...

  • Atopic eczema is a condition that inflames the skin, causing itchiness, dryness and redness. It most often affects the hands, insides of the elbows, backs of the knees and the face and scalp in children.

  • 2-5% of the population and 10% of children are affected. It can have a genetic link.

  • For people with eczema, the skin doesn’t function well as an effective barrier to the outside world, meaning that irritants and allergy-inducing substances can enter their skin.

  • Certain triggers can cause an eczema flare-up. These include heat or cold, dust, environmental factors or allergens and contact with irritants such as detergents or soap. Hormonal changes can also be to blame, as can infections, and sufferers also report stress as a factor.

  • Treatment includes emollients, steroid creams and antihistamines. Symptoms also sometimes improve with age.

To read more about the causes, symptoms and how to manage eczema visit our full article here.