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Category Archives: Eczema

Im a dermatologist, and these are the mistakes I see people make when treating eczema – Well+Good

Posted: January 18, 2020 at 9:50 am

Having dehydrated skin is one thing, but dealing with eczema takes dry skin woes to another level. Since were smack in the middle of winter, a lot of people are experiencing eczema flareups, and there are a few key things to keep in mind when combatting this type of irritation that go above and beyond your usual dry skin treatments. As in: Youre going to need more than your trusty hyaluronic acid serum.

Eczema is a skin disease thats characterized by dry skin that becomes inflamed, says Loretta Ciraldo, MD, a Miami-based dermatologist and founder of Dr. Loretta skin care. Youll typically see the skin condition, also known as atopic dermatitis, show up as extra-dry patches of inflammation, which she says tend to be really itchy. Drier, colder weather can worsen it, as can using certain skin-care ingredients like alcohol and coloring, says Dr. Ciraldo.

While there are definitely things you can do to dry skin that also help with eczema, eczema is more about giving extra attention to your skins barrier. People with eczema have skin that doesnt function well as a barrier, says Shirley Chi, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in Los Angeles. So it takes an extra level of TLC, and that includes avoiding certain lifestyle habits (one, for example, happens in the shower). Keep scrolling for the most common mistakes that dermatologists see people make when treating eczema.

Basking in hot water in your shower canfeelgood, but it makes eczema worse. Hot showers temporarily substitute the sensation of heat for itch, but if you come out and towel dry, youll make your skin drier and worsen the problem, says Dr. Ciraldo. Instead, stick with tepid water, and try to stay in the water until your fingertips wrinklethis will rehydrate your skin, she says. After patting yourself dry, apply a fragrance-free lotion like CeraVe Moisturizing Body Cream ($13) when your skins slightly damp.

Everyone should be quenching their skin with a moisturizer every single day, but if youre dealing with eczema, you should do so more frequently. One of the biggest mistakes people with eczema make is that they dont moisturize enough, says Dr. Chi. They might use cream once a day, when actually they need it two to three times daily, especially after getting the skin wet like after hand washing or bathing. This is because eczema skin dries out easier, so keep that moisturizer on hand.

Since having eczema means your skin barrier is compromised, derms say to avoid exfoliating, especially with a strong chemical exfoliant. Dont use exfoliators like salicylic acid or glycolic acid, says Dr. Chi. In fact, she suggests skipping out on exfoliating altogether until your skin barriers back in tip top shape. Then, when youre ready, try lactic acid, which is less irritating than the other acids in your arsenal.

Also useful to know is best ingredient for hydrating skin, according to a dermatologist. And if you have dry skin, avoid these ingredients in your beauty routine.

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Alitretinoin an Effective Option in Children With Hand Eczema – Dermatology Advisor

Posted: at 9:49 am

Study data published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology support the safety and efficacy of alitretinoin for the treatment of hand eczema in children.

Investigators conducted a retrospective chart review of all consecutive patients (18 years) treated with alitretinoin at the Pediatric Skin Center of the University Childrens Hospital Zurich, Switzerland, from 2014 to 2018. Sociodemographic and clinical characteristics were extracted from medical records. Investigators also assessed alitretinoin dose, treatment duration, and adverse events. All eligible patients had regular follow-up visits before treatment, 4 to 6 weeks after treatment initiation, and every 3 months thereafter.

The primary outcome measure was change in Physicians Global Assessment score across the study period. Achieving a Physicians Global Assessment of 0 to 1 or a reduction of 2+ points was considered an excellent treatment response, and a reduction of 1 point was considered moderate response. The hand eczema severity index (HECSI-Score) was also used in patients with chronic hand eczema (CHE).

A total of 13 patients were enrolled in the study, of whom 9 (69%) were girls. The median age at alitretinoin initiation was 11.5 years (range, 5.8-15.8 years). Participant diagnoses included CHE (n=9), severe atopic dermatitis (n=2), and Netherton syndrome and autosomal recessive congenital ichthyosis (n=2). Moderate to excellent treatment response (Physicians Global Assessment decrease 1 point) was observed in 7 (78%) of 9 patients with CHE, 1 (50%) of 2 patients with atopic dermatitis, and the 1 patient with autosomal recessive congenital ichthyosis. In the remaining 4 patients, no significant treatment effect was observed. Median time to response in patients with CHE was 2.5 months (range, 1-6 months), and a 50% improvement in HECSI-Score was achieved by 5 patients (56%). The most common adverse effect was headache, reported by 10 (77%) patients during treatment. One patient stopped therapy because of headaches, and 1 required alitretinoin dose reduction.

Overall, alitretinoin was well tolerated in a cohort of pediatric patients with hand eczema. Excellent to moderate treatment response was observed in the majority of participants. Data generalizability was limited by the retrospective study design and small cohort size. The study cohort was also highly heterogenous in terms of dermatological diagnosis. Further study is needed to explore the treatment effects of alitretinoin in children with refractory CHE and other inflammatory skin conditions.

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Reference

Luchsinger I, Vogler T, Schwieger-Briel A, et al. Safe and effective use of Alitretinoin in children with recalcitrant hand eczema and other dermatoses a retrospective analysis [published online November 19, 2019]. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. doi:10.1111/jdv.16088

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News Local mom and engineer starts soap company inspired by her son with eczema Anu Prakash – WXYZ

Posted: at 9:49 am

(WXYZ) A local mother of two and engineer now has her own business that was inspired by her son. Camilla Rice saw her son Miles suffer with pain from eczema ever since he was a baby.

"Seeing my son suffer like that; the itching, crying... and I can't do anything about it," Rice said. "It's never been my personality to accept that."

She'd bought soaps to help soothe him, but found them to be expensive for what she was getting and they weren't organic. After a girlfriend of hers told her she should make her own soap, Rice got a soap kit and loved it. She says she did a lot of research and talked to dermatologists.

Rice wanted the soaps to be as clean as possible. She says she fell in love with the process and started making her own organic and vegan soaps. She said it provided much needed relief for her son. After word spread, she started getting requests and then Rice, who's a mother of two and a full-time engineer at Ford, decided to sign up for her first craft show.

Rice had so much inventory, but says she almost sold out. That's when she decided maybe her soap line was a business.

In 2017, she started selling her organic and vegan soaps online. A few months ago, she opened a store in Troy at 3964 Rochester Road.

"I do a lot of my soap making at night and on the weekends so it doesn't interfere with my daytime job," Rice said.

Her products have gone beyond soaps to include body butters, soap bars, lip balms and scrubs. Products range from $3.99 to $23.99.

Rice says the business is doing so well, some of her products are on back order. However, the biggest reward is knowing she helped her little boy.

"Being a mom really is the most important role I play in my life," she said.

Rice is also working on her own YouTube channel to show how she makes her soaps. She hopes to have that ready in a couple of weeks.

If you'd like to check out her products, head to http://www.greenolivesoaps.com .

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Sheffield study of newborn babies seeks to prevent eczema – The Star

Posted: at 9:49 am

The University of Sheffield and the University of Manchester will follow 175 newborn babies during their first year of life to identify those with a high risk of developing eczema to improve standards of neonatal skincare

The Skin Testing for atopic eczema risk (STAR) study will monitor them to see how their skin matures and identify which of them are most at risk of developing eczema.

Researchers will monitor this using specialist, non-invasive fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy technology used to study and understand the chemical and surface chemistry in various types of membrane such as skin which has been provided by research, development and manufacturing company Agilent.

Dr Simon Danby, the lead researcher of the STAR study and Research Fellow at the University of Sheffield, said: A growing body of evidence suggests a critical role for the skin barrier in the development and course of atopic eczema.

A greater understanding of the skin we are born with prevents eczema means we will be able to identify susceptible individuals early on, and enable novel therapeutic options to improve standards of neonatal skincare and prevent clinical eczema development.

In the UK alone, one in five children and one in 12 adults have atopic eczema, is a long-lasting condition that is common in children. It makes the skin red and itchy and tends to flare periodically.

Following birth our skin takes a number of years to mature before it gives us the protection we need from our environment, but without adequate protection our bodies are exposed to irritants, allergens and bacteria that can trigger a range of skin problems including eczema, Dr Danby added.

The early identification of high-risk babies opens up the opportunity to prevent eczema development, and could potentially prevent the development of other allergies too.

It is hoped the research learnings will also provide the opportunity for the medical community to diagnose skin conditions as early as possible, helping them to administer the right care and promote effective management of conditions like eczema.

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Putting the Pro in Probiotics | Nutrition and Fitness | iosconews.com – Iosco County News Herald

Posted: at 9:49 am

It is healthy for the bodies to take probiotics. They cleanse the body and the gut system. The good bacteria helps keep the gut healthy. Instead of buying expensive probiotic products, nature offers some organic choices for you that you can use daily for a better gut health. The name itself is derived from the Latin 'pro-' 'for' and the Greek '-biotic' 'life. The discovery of the probiotics came in the early 20th century and was found in Bulgaria where the bacteria Bacillus Bulgarikus was found in milk.

Here is a list of the top natural probiotics:

Yogurt

Kimchi

Sauerkraut

Kombucha

Pickles

Kefir

Tempeh

According to research, there are also additional numerous health benefits to using probiotics. These are the top five benefits:

Diarrhea

According to PubMed Central, probiotics reduced the risk of travelers' diarrhea by 8%, from other causes by 57% in children and 26% in adults. Some diarrhea can be due to antibiotics and some other natural causes, the study found.

Urinal Health

Urinal health is another benefit of probiotics, according to a Harvard study. Since a lot of bacteria can be found there, the Lactobacilli strains found make it too acidic for the microorganisms to survive. The probiotic restores the balance of microflora preventing infections such as vaginosis, yeast infections, and urinary tract infection.

Skins Immune System

Some dermatologists believe that probiotics improve the skin condition and boost its immune system since they promote the production of natural antibodies in the body. A study by PubMed Central found that over 570 children that took Lactobacillus GG reduced the frequency and severity of respiratory infections by 17%.

Eczema and Allergies

According to PubMed Central, probiotics can be helpful in treating eczema and allergies in children and adults. Some probiotics may also reduce inflammatory responses in people with milk or dairy allergies. Women who took probiotics when they were pregnant showed that their kids had 83% lower chance of developing eczema.

Lose Weight and Belly Fat

If you are looking for a natural way to lose weight, a PubMed study found that one way to get rid of stubborn belly fat and lose weight is to take probiotics. Dieting women who took Lactobacillus rhamnosus for three months lost 50% more weight than women who didn't take a probiotic. Another study of 210 people found that taking Lactobacillus gasseri for 12 weeks resulted in an 8.5% reduction of belly fat.

Studies and research show a lot of benefits in taking natural probiotics. Get going on your favourite probiotic food and boost up your immune system and gut health.

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Itchy face: Causes, symptoms, and treatment – Medical News Today

Posted: at 9:49 am

A person may experience an itching sensation, or pruritus, on their face for a number of different reasons.

Although pruritus can occur due to visible conditions, such as psoriasis or an insect bite, it might also indicate the presence of an underlying condition.

This article will look at the different causes of pruritus on the face, as well as some options that may provide relief.

Dry skin on the face can be a cause of pruritus. A person might have dry skin on their face for many reasons.

These may include:

The American Academy of Dermatology recommend following these tips to prevent dry skin:

If pruritus occurs due to dry skin, a person can moisturize to ease the itching. The purpose of a moisturizer is to prevent water loss and add water to the skin.

Moisturizers contain different ingredients that serve different purposes. For example, occlusive moisturizers containing petrolatum prevent water loss from the skin by forming a barrier.

Humectants, such as urea and glycolic and lactic acids, attract and bind water to hydrate the skin.

Learn more about dry skin on the face here.

Pruritus appears to be particularly prevalent among older adults. As people age, their bodies' pH levels can change. There may also be decreased hormone levels and a reduced ability to retain water.

As the skin retains less moisture and becomes thinner, this may cause dry skin and pruritus.

Treatments for pruritus among older adults will depend on the cause. However, a person may be able to ease the itching by moisturizing the skin.

Learn how to improve skin health here.

Some people may experience pruritus on their face as a result of a mosquito bite.

Typically, a mosquito bite will clear up by itself. However, other bugs including lice and bed bugs may live or feed on the skin.

Home treatment for bug bites may include:

If a person is experiencing anaphylaxis, which is a severe allergic reaction, they or someone near them should seek immediate medical attention.

Symptoms of anaphylaxis may include wheezing, the feeling of a lump in the throat, abdominal pain, and vomiting.

Learn more about insect bites here.

People with the following skin conditions may experience pruritus on the face:

To control the itch, a doctor will first need to diagnose the condition. Once they have confirmed the diagnosis, they can develop a treatment and management plan to provide relief from the itch.

Some treatments may include calamine lotion, topical medications, and antihistamines.

Learn more about skin conditions here.

A visible sign of skin cancer, or melanoma, is a new or changing spot on the skin. This spot may sometimes feel itchy.

In this case, pruritus may occur due to the skin's reaction to a tumor becoming cancerous or to cancer forming elsewhere in the body.

The treatment options for melanoma include cryotherapy, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and surgical excision.

To reduce the itch, a doctor may prescribe histone deacetylase inhibitors and oral corticosteroids.

Learn more about skin cancer here.

A long-term itch without a rash or any other visible marks may suggest that a person has an underlying condition.

Specifically, conditions that affect the blood, kidneys, liver, or thyroid gland can cause pruritus. Some people with diabetes and HIV may also experience pruritus.

People with chronic kidney failure who are close to requiring dialysis may have a chronic itch. In fact, researchers suggest that about 40% of people with end stage kidney failure experience pruritus.

Liver disease can also cause pruritus. According to one 2015 study, 69% of those with primary biliary cirrhosis experienced pruritus, and 75% of those people reported experiencing pruritus before receiving their diagnosis.

Chronic pruritus can affect a person's mood and sleep, which may affect their quality of life.

In these cases, treatment for pruritus will depend on the exact condition a person has. For example, people with liver disease may require creams or ointments for mild and local pruritus. Some may need systemic medications if the itch is severe or generalized.

Treatment for pruritus more generally may include opioid receptor antagonists, antihistamines, bile salts, and rifampicin.

People can develop allergic skin reactions to many different substances. Nickel, for example, is a common substance that can cause allergic reactions.

Many products that can come into contact with the face including jewelry, cell phones, and eyeglass frames may contain nickel.

People who develop an allergic reaction to a substance might develop a noticeable rash.

In order to treat allergies that affect the skin, a person can use steroid creams or ointments.

Learn more about allergic reactions on the face here.

Some plant and marine life can cause pruritus.

Plant life

The following is a list of plants that may cause a reaction on the skin:

Marine life

"Swimmer's itch," for example, may occur when a person develops an allergic reaction after coming into contact with parasites in a pond, lake, or ocean.

"Seabather's eruption," on the other hand, is a reaction that can occur when newly hatched jellyfish or sea anemones become trapped between a person's skin and their swimsuit.

Treatment for allergic reactions to plant and marine life includes steroids and antihistamines.

Some medications may cause itchy skin, including:

In some cases, a person can stop taking a drug and replace it with another that does not cause pruritus.

Some people may not be able to change their medication, however, so they must discuss the treatment and management of this side effect with their doctor.

Learn more about side effects here.

Some people may have pruritus on the face as a result of nerve damage. Typically, pruritus due to nerve damage is localized.

Stroke and multiple sclerosis can both affect or damage the nerves, potentially resulting in pruritus.

It can be difficult to treat pruritus that occurs due to nerve damage. However, person may use local anesthetics, gabapentin, or capsaicin patches to alleviate the itch.

There has not been much research into effective treatments for pruritus due to nerve damage.

Learn more about the nervous system here.

Health professionals suggest that almost everyone develops an allergic reaction on their skin at least once.

In making a diagnosis, they will examine the skin carefully. They may also ask about any current and past health concerns.

They may also ask about work, free time, pets, and skincare products to find the substance that caused the reaction.

Some people may need to undergo patch testing. For this, a doctor will place a patch containing small amounts of substances that may cause an allergic reaction on the skin. A few days later, they will remove the patch and check the skin to see if another rash appears.

People with underlying health conditions may require a full medical examination to determine the cause of the itch.

People experiencing pruritus should consult with a doctor, as this can be a symptom of several chronic health conditions.

Other symptoms that may point to an underlying condition include:

Conditions that give rise to pruritus such as psoriasis, folliculitis, and allergies may require medical attention.

When topical creams and antihistamine pills do not work to control the itch, a person may need to see a doctor to determine the exact cause.

Some people may experience an allergic skin reaction without knowing which substance caused the rash. In this case, a person may need to consult an allergist.

An itchy face is a common skin condition that, in severe or persistent cases, can affect quality of life.

Sometimes, the cause is dry skin. People with skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis may also experience itchiness on their face.

When a person has an itchy face but no rash or other visible marks, they require a thorough physical examination from a doctor to determine the cause.

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4 things to know about eczema – WRAL.com

Posted: at 9:49 am

By UNC Health Talk

Editor's note: This article originally appeared on UNC Health Talk.

Have you noticed a dry, red rash on your babys cheeks, arms or legs? Chances are, your little one has eczema. A condition that makes skin red and itchy, eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is most common in children but can occur at any age.

Eczema is not contagious. Its cause is not known, but researchers think both genetic and environmental factors play a role. Heres what you need to know to manage eczema, whether its affecting your child or you.

Eczema tends to occur after 6 months of age and goes away by age 5 in half of children with eczema, says UNC Medical Center dermatologist Dr. Puneet Singh Jolly. However, for a small part of the population it can persist into adulthood or recur.

During infancy, eczema usually affects the face, backs of arms and fronts of legs. In older children and adults, it affects the fronts of arms and backs of legs.

Many children with eczema go on to have food allergies, seasonal allergies and asthma. In fact, up to 80 percent of kids with eczema develop allergies or asthma later in childhood.

This phenomenon is called the atopic triad. We think eczema, seasonal allergies and asthma share some common pathways, Dr. Jolly says. But just because your child has eczema doesnt mean he or she will have allergies or asthma. It just means theres a higher risk of it happening.

Dry skin can cause skin to itch. Scratching the skin can cause it to turn red, swell and itch even more, and the eczema worsens as a result. One way to help with this is to keep skin moisturized with a thick ointment like petroleum jelly or a thick cream.

When you moisturize, youre adding a barrier on top of the skin to prevent water loss from your skin, which keeps it from drying out, Dr. Jolly says.

He also suggests that lukewarm baths may help hydrate skin better than hot showers, especially in the winter when skin tends to be drier. When you are ready to get out, gently pat dry your skin and then lather on an ointment or cream. Then put on loose-fitting clothing.

This process locks in the moisture and can provide relief from the itching that comes with eczema, Dr. Jolly says.

Try these additional steps to reduce your risk of dry, itchy skin:

If regular moisturizing and other self-care steps dont help, a doctor may prescribe a topical steroid to help alleviate itching and swelling. These also can help repair the skin. If topical steroids are not effective, a doctor may prescribe other types of topical anti-inflammatory medications or stronger oral or injectable medications in severe cases.

In addition, your or your childs doctor may prescribe an antibiotic cream if the skin has a bacterial infection, an open sore or cracks. A short course of oral antibiotics may be necessary to treat any infections.

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Bucks students urged to think before they comment on eczema – Mix 96

Posted: at 9:49 am

Published by the Mix96 News Team at 1:33pm 16th January 2020. (Updated at 1:39pm 16th January 2020)

Children have reported being called names like 'reptile'.

The common misconception that atopic dermatitis (AD) is contagious is common, especially among school children.

Buckinghamshire local Ruth Holroyd has been bullied due to her eczema in the past:

"I did get bullied quite a lot at school, and it did all stem from my skin because it makes you different.

"I can remember the first time I realised I was different, people wouldn't hold my hands. We would be doing some dancing, or something in P.E. and people wouldn't hold my hand.

"I think they thought they were going to catch it or they didn't like the feel of my hands."

Eczema Outreach Support is a charity that works with children and families to educate and support them.

They shared Alana's story on BBC Children in Need last year.

Things like soap or a PE lesson can cause a flare up in the condition which is difficult to avoid for school children especially.

The cold winter months can be extremely irritating for AD sufferers, and flare ups are more common.

Ruth wants people to remember the condition can have an affect on mental health:

"I am going through topical steroid withdrawel at the moment, where I'm cutting out steroids. It is a really brutal process and some people take their lives if it gets that bad.

"People can get so lonely and so isolated that they just can't carry on. Kids at school don't know how to get that help."

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John Turturro On The Future Of HBOs The Night Of TCA – Deadline

Posted: at 9:49 am

Will John Turturro be getting back into the eczema skin of The Night Ofs New York City criminal attorney John Stone soon?

In the series debut season, Stone was thrust into the biggest case of his career defending Pakistani-American college student Nasir (Riz Ahmed) accused of murdering his one-night stand. Now the character is poised to make a comeback.

We have a couple of ideas but we have to sit down and discuss them, so were at that stage so thats good, Turturro told Deadline about a second season of the limited series with co-creator Richard Price.

James Gandolfini originally played Stone in the pilot before Turturro took over following The Sopranos actors death. The show, based on the BBC drama Criminal Justice, was a passion project for Gandolfini, who is credited as an EP on the series set in a culturally divided New York City 15 years after 9/11.

HBO @ TCA: Deadlines Complete Coverage

The Night Ofracked up 13 Primetime Emmy nominations including Best Limited Series, with both Turturro and Ahmed nominated for Lead Actor in a Limited Series (Ahmed won).

Also upcoming for Turturro is hisBig Lewbowskispinoff movieThe Jesus Rollswhich he directed and in which he reprises his Hispanic character from the Coen Brothers movie. Jesus Rolls will be released Feb. 28 from Screen Media.

In regards to Turturros next feature directorial, I have something else said the actor to Deadline today at TCA, but opted to keep mum.

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12 Itchy Skin Treatments That Work, According to Dermatologists – Prevention.com

Posted: at 9:49 am

If youre constantly scratching at itchy skin, priority No. 1 is finding something (anything!) that will make it stop. To do that, its essential to cater your treatment to the reason why youre itching in the first place, explains Melanie Grossman, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist based in New York City.

After all, if you load up on an antihistamine like Benadryl but dont get rid of whats triggering your itch (think: dry skin or insect bites), no number of pink pills will fully relieve your need to scratch.

Sometimes, finding out whats at the bottom of an itch requires the professional insight of a dermatologist. Other times, you can figure it out on your own. Then, get sweet relief with one of these effective, proven treatments for itchy skin.

For dry, itchy skin from cold weather, hormonal fluctuations (blame pregnancy, menopause, or aging), diabetes, and other conditions, a daily moisturizing routine can help rehydrate your skin and, in turn, soothe your itchiness. Opt for a fragrance-free moisturizer, such as EltaMDs Intense Moisturizer or CeraVe Moisturizing Cream, suggests Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Entire Dermatology in New York City.

For an added cooling effect, which helps calm itch-inducing inflammation, try keeping some moisturizer in your fridge before slathering it on, per the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD).

Heres an easy itch treatment: 10 to 15 minutes of quality time with an ice pack, suggests Dr. Kanchanapoomi Levin. Rather than scratching bug bites like theres no tomorrowand dialing up the unpleasant reaction as a resulttry pressing an ice cube to them for quick (albeit, short-lasting) relief, adds Dr. Grossman.

Got itchy skin from insect bites, sunburn, or not-so-nice plants such as poison ivy or oak? Over-the-counter lotions, creams, and gels that contain plant-based herbal remedies such as menthol, calamine, and aloe vera can help reduce inflammation and soothe the skin, says Alix J. Charles, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist and fellow of the AAD.

Ever take oatmeal baths as a kid? Research shows colloidal oatmeala finely-ground type of oatmealcan help lower the intensity of itchy skin as it tamps down inflammation, per a 2015 study in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology. Soak it up in the tub, apply it to itchy patches in paste-form, or lather it on in a moisturizing lotion or cream.

CeraVe Moisturizing Cream

Aveeno Soothing Bath Treatment with 100% Colloidal Oatmeal

Cortizone-10 Anti-Itch Ointment

Allegra Adult 12 Hour Allergy Relief

To spot-treat itchy skin, try over-the-counter 1% hydrocortisone cream, suggests Dr. Charles, which will work to reduce redness and swelling in addition to itching. If youre dealing with an itchy area youre not so keen to touch or rub, you can also use a hydrocortisone spray, per the Mayo Clinic.

When your bodys immune system alarm bells go off, that can result in a release of itch- and rash-inducing compounds called histamines. Thats where antihistamines come in, which prevent these pesky substances from wreaking havoc on your cells. Take Allegra or Zyrtec to clear up hives and itchiness alike, suggests Dr. Kanchanapoomi Levin.

If youre facing a fast-spreading rash or antihistamines arent making a dent in your symptoms, head for the doc ASAP. It could be a sign of a serious allergic reaction.

If your itch is *really* bad (think: worst poison ivy of your life, extensive hives, or a flare-up from a skin condition like eczema), dermatologists might choose to prescribe stronger treatments, including steroid cream or pills, explains Dr. Grossman. If youve tried a handful of home remedies and theyre not doing the trick, head to your doctor who can help ID next steps.

Again, a super-relentless itch might call for an additional expert treatment, including an injectable medication, says Dr. Grossman. This in-office procedure can help dial down the itch from issues such as contact dermatitis (what happens when your skin has rubbed up against an irritating substance such as poison ivy or a chemical) or a severe case of a skin condition such as eczema or psoriasis.

Keep in mind, though, this treatment can trigger whats known as the rebound effect (meaning symptoms can worsen when treatment is discontinued), so its best to ask your dermatologist about this and any other side effects to consider, according to the National Eczema Association (NEA).

If youve been feeling overwhelmed, andeven worsenow you have a concerningly itchy skin, your mental health could be suffering. While rare, sometimes itchiness can be triggered by the chemicals serotonin and norepinephrine inside your body, as a result of a high-stress situation, anxiety, or depression. Sometimes psychiatric medications, including antidepressants can help soothe your itch, so make an appointment with your physician if you think this may be the case, suggests Dr. Charles.

If youve recently had surgery or youre recovering from an injury, pain medications such as opioids (among others) can cause *big-time* itching as a side effect, says Dr. Grossman. Sound familiar? Adjusting your dose or adding on an anti-itch medication can bring relief.

An in-office procedure called phototherapy (also known as light therapy) can help alleviate itching from inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, says Dr. Kanchanapoomi Levin. The most common type, narrow band phototherapy, helps reduce itchiness and inflammation by exposing your skin to an increasing amount of a certain wavelength of UV radiation, per the NEA. An impressive 70% of people with eczema get better after receiving this treatment.

If youve tried a handful of home remedies and your persistent itch remains, an underlying condition such as diabetes, kidney or liver disease, infections including Hepatitis B or C, HIV, thyroid problems, or complications of pregnancy, among other issues could be to blame, says Dr. Kanchanapoomi Levin. Its true that day-to-day itch triggers including dry skin and bug bites are *far* more common, but youre best off visiting your doctor or dermatologist to confirm proper treatment.

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12 Itchy Skin Treatments That Work, According to Dermatologists - Prevention.com

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