Atopic Dermatitis is a condition that causes the skin to become dry, scaly, and itchy. It is more commonly known as eczema. Eczema most frequently attacks children, although people of any age and any skin tone can develop eczema. It is especially important to consult a board-certified dermatologist when you suspect atopic dermatitis in case it is actually something more serious. Atopic dermatitis in itself is not dangerous, but it can be very uncomfortable, especially for babies and children. Constant itching can lead to complications, including infection in broken skin, scarring, and the thickening of skin.
How is atopic dermatitis treated?
In mild cases, over the counter treatments can sometimes help ease the discomfort of atopic dermatitis but for most cases, a board certified dermatologist or a doctor will prescribe oral medications, steroid creams, or light therapy.
What causes atopic dermatitis?
Atopic dermatitis tends to run in families: if your mom or dad or one of your siblings had it, you are more like to have it. But just because someone in your family has atopic dermatitis does not mean that you will definitely develop it as well. Most doctors believe that atopic dermatitis is caused by an auto-immune response. Since auto-immune diseases are still largely mysterious to the medical community, oftentimes doctors cannot tell patients exactly what is causing the reaction – or how to stop it. Many people find that certain triggers – like stress, extreme temperatures, dry skin, or skin irritants – can cause flare-ups of their eczema.
Because of the unsightly nature of atopic dermatitis and the discomfort it causes, we encourage anyone who is experiencing this condition or who has children with this condition to make an appointment with us at Dermatologic Cosmetic & Plastic Surgery. Our doctors can evaluate the affected sites and determine a course of action. They can provide forms of treatment that are stronger than what is available over the counter and give you guidance on the possible causes of the condition.