Atopic dermatitis (AD) or eczema looks different in infants, children, and adults. Children usually get AD in the first year of their life. If a child gets eczema at this time, scaly and dry patches can be seen on the skin. These patches often come on the face, forehead, and the scalp. The patches can be seen commonly on the cheeks as well.
Regardless of where it appears, atopic dermatitis is generally very itchy. Infants rub their skin against carpeting or bedding to get relief from their itch. At times, the itching is so intense that a child cannot sleep. Scratching often leads to skin infection. It is essential to learn how to take care of the skin because atopic dermatitis can last for a long time. Good skin care and treatment can ease a lot of discomfort.
Board certified dermatologist Dr. Tri H. Nguyen provides safe and proven skin care procedures to patients in Houston, Katy, Spring, The Woodlands, Texas, and surrounding locations.
How is atopic dermatitis diagnosed?
To diagnose AD, a dermatologist starts by examining the skin of the child. He or she will look for a rash and ask questions. It is important for the dermatologist to find out if the child has an itchy skin. They would also want to know if any of the blood relatives have had asthma AD, or hay fever.
At times, a dermatologist will perform a patch test. This test is used to ascertain allergies. It is the process of placing tiny amounts of allergens (substances that cause allergies for few people) on the skin of the child. They will check the skin for reactions. Checks are usually done after a few hours, twenty four hours, and seventy two hours. Reports have shown that that some allergens can worsen the eczema.
How do dermatologists treat atopic dermatitis?
Treatment cannot cure atopic dermatitis, but it can keep it under control. Treatment is essential because it can:
- Prevent the eczema from getting worse
- Relieve the itch and the pain, calm the skin
- Minimize emotional stress
- Prevent infections
Stop the thickening of the skin. Thickened skin causes itches all the time — even when the eczema is not flaring.
A treatment plan often comprises skin care, medicine and changes in lifestyle. These changes in lifestyle can help in preventing the flare-ups. Many patients require tips for coping with their AD. Doing all of this may appear difficult, but adhering to the plan can make a huge difference. Your dermatologist will make a tailored treatment plan that suits your needs. Medication and several other therapies will be prescribed as required.
- Try to control itching
- Minimize the inflammation (swelling and redness) of the skin
- Clear infection
- Loosen and eliminate scaly lesions.
- Lessen new lesions from forming.
Studies have proved that when atopic dermatitis develops in an infant or young child, the intensity of the disease usually lessens and the child improves with time. In some cases, it has been observed that this medical condition totally disappears by the time the child turns two.
Nearly fifty percent of the children who get AD will have it as an adult. However, the good news is that this condition often becomes milder with age. There is no concrete method to find out whether the atomic dermatitis will go away or be a lifelong disease.
This makes treatment very critical. Treatment can not only prevent the AD from getting worse, but it can also help to ease the discomfort of the patient. Board certified dermatologist Dr. Tri H. Nguyen receives patients from Houston, Katy, Spring, The Woodlands, Texas, and nearby areas for advanced skin care treatments.
For more information on procedures and treatments offered at Texas Surgical Dermatology PA please call 832.663.6566 or click here to contact our dermatologists. Helping patients in Houston, The Woodlands, Springs, Katy and other surrounding areas of Texas.