Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"How do I get rid of my eczema?"
I've had problems with my eczema for a while now, roughly one year. I believe that it was exacerbated by acidic substances in food during food prep at work, such as pickles and the like. While it has not been as bad since I quit, it still persists, causing my fingers to become dry and red, especially at night and during harsh weather. Is there anything to help it quickly die down?
The mainstay of treatment of eczema is moisturizing and avoidance of triggers of your eczema flares that you have already identified in the past. Avoidance of itching affected areas of the skin is also very important in long-term control of your skin. Moisturizing lotions should be applied liberally after showering to all areas of the body that tend to be affected by your flares. Soft liquid soaps that do not dry out the skin should be used for washing. When your eczema flares and the skin becomes red, then you may need to add some topical corticosteroids to your daily regimen. In this case, it is best to use ointments (not creams) and to apply them after using your usual moisturizer. It is important to avoid high-potency steroids on the face and to avoid long-term use in areas where the skin is thin (such as on the hands and fingers). Your primary care physician should be able to help you figure out the best regimen to control your skin. If needed, you can be referred to a dermatologist who can direct any advanced care that you may ultimately require.
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