Eczema is a very popular and chronic disease since it affects both babies, young adults and the seniors.
Also, it can occur in almost any part of the body, from the face to the toe. It is reported that more than 30 million americans suffer from this disease.
Depending on the type of eczema one is suffering from, the cause, symptoms and effects can be different.
Causes of Eczema
The causes of eczema on the face of babies may be different from the causes in adults who are more exposed to the triggers of eczema.
- Allergic reaction to substances
However, eczema occurs as a result of the responsiveness of your immune systems to certain substances that you take, either through ingestion or application on the skin.
Depending on the type of eczema you’ve, certain substances/allergens or properties of the skin can trigger the symptoms.
For example, in contact eczema which easily affects your hands, fingers, palm, feet, ankles, arms etc, the causes might be as a result of contact with certain substance (allergens)
Substances such as nickel, poison ivy, penicillin-based antibiotics, insect stings, some hand sanitizers, perfumes, dyes, soap etc
This commonly cause eczema on your skin when you’re exposed to them for a long period.
The treatment may be to just stop using the product you find out you’re allergic to.
- Sebum production in the skin
Another cause of eczema you experience on your back, back of knees, neck, around your eyes or even on your penile head may be either an over/under production of sebum in your skin.
Serum is that oily substance that is secreted from the skin sebaceous gland, it helps to retain moisture in the skin and prevent dryness.
When the sebum production is low or very high, your skin can be vulnerable to inflammation.
- Eczema can be in your lineage
For example, neurodermatitis is an hereditary atopic eczema which occurs as a result of the skin deficiency of some lipids.
Due to this, your skin becomes very dry and tends to flake. You can also experience hypersensitivity of the skin.
It is estimated that over 60% cases of atopic eczema are due to heredity.
if any of your parents suffers from atopic disease such as asthma, allergy, or hay fever, there is tendency you would develop atopic eczema.
Neurodermatitis can start with some patches of skin that becomes itchy and later form scales.
It often affects your neck, genital area, knuckle, wrists.
People who inherit eczema are often allergic to dust, pollen, animal dander and other environmental influences that can irritate the skin.
- Lifestyle as a cause of Eczema
Stress and oxidative stress are caused by your lifestyle and it could be a cause of eczema. For example, increased sweating can be a trigger of eczema symptoms.
Excessive weight, poor diet, alcohol intake, smoking and exposure to pollutants can really mar your health, including your skin, and trigger the symptoms of eczema.
While some people take certain medications and eat certain foods and fruits without issue, you can be allergic to any of them.
Some common foods (dietary allergens) that people are allergic to and thus trigger the symptoms of eczema are milk, eggs, wheat (because of gluten protein), nuts, soy, cinnamon, cloves, citrus fruits etc
Also, if your skin suffers deficiency of fat, the skin cells may malfunction. Your skin will also lose moisture and dry, thus, becomes irritated.
Low fats in the skin can cause cracks and breakage, which also creates an avenue for bacteria to cause infections.
Eczema symptoms are triggered by either reaction of the immune system or irritants.
Depending on the type of the disease and the stage, you can manage it well by adjusting your lifestyle.
If you’ve suffered from eczema in the past, it’s likely to have it in the future.
Example is eczema during pregnancy, the immune system can get irritated to the changes in your body.