Skin Care Myth Busting: Eczema
Also known as dermatitis, eczema is an inflammatory dry skin condition. Atopic eczema, the most common form, affects 1 in 5 children and 1 in 10 adults in the UK.
Symptoms of atopic eczema include dry, itchy, cracked and sore skin that can either be localised in small patches or more widespread on the body. Affected areas often include the hands, insides of the elbows, backs of the knees and, for children, the face and scalp. Some people with atopic eczema may even experience fluctuations in the level of their symptoms from time to time.
However, this incredibly common skin condition also carries many myths and misconceptions that can be harmful to those with eczema. We’re here to debunk 3 common eczema myths.
Myth 1: Atopic eczema is contagious
To put it simply: You cannot “catch” eczema from another person. There is no way to contract eczema through physical contact.
Instead, atopic eczema is a genetic condition, meaning that if a parent already has eczema, there is a chance that their child will also develop eczema at some point. However, like most genetic factors, this is not definitive and your child may not develop eczema at all.
Myth 2: Atopic eczema can be cured
At this time, there is no definitive way to “cure” eczema. However, there are ways to manage, reduce and minimise symptoms.
Aside from medicinal intervention with over-the-counter or prescription treatments, making lifestyle changes can have a positive impact on your eczema symptoms. Using gentle, soap-free, hydrating skincare products regularly can help to soothe irritated skin.
With a pH value of 5.5, sebamed has a range of products that can help relieve eczema symptoms whilst supporting your skin’s barrier against allergens and harmful substances.
Myth 3: Eczema is “just” itchy skin
Although to some, eczema may appear as a superficial issue that is just itchy skin, for those living with atopic eczema, it can have a huge impact on various areas of their lives.
We all hate the feeling that there is an itch that we can’t quite scratch. Constantly scratching irritated skin can feel painful and potentially cause long-term skin damage or infections, especially if the skin is broken regularly. Not only this, but the chronic discomfort experienced from this itchy sensation may also impact an individual’s mental well-being if it interferes with their usual daily activities.
In addition, where eczema can present as red, scaley and sometimes broken skin, some individuals may feel negative about their appearance, leading to a feeling of self-consciousness and causing them to withdraw from socialisation or pursue irritating methods to conceal the affected skin (for example, using makeup or non-breathable clothes to cover up.)
Although atopic eczema is a long-term skin condition that can cause much discomfort, it is entirely natural to experience it. If you are concerned about your eczema symptoms, contact your doctor or dermatologist to consider a game plan to manage your symptoms. Finally, with these eczema myths officially busted, you can start to live your best life in the knowledge that you are more than your skin.