People with dermatitis often use eczema lotions to keep the skin hydrated. After all, eczema sufferers are well aware that moisturizing is a major part of the battle against their condition.
Precautions are taken to avoid a flair-up, and when it happens, the condition is treated and managed. Itchy and dry skin are the most common symptoms of eczema, although they are not the only ones. Treatment often includes moisturizing the skin and using antihistamines or steroid creams to deal with itching.
Skin can be moisturized by three types of products - lotions, creams, and ointments. Lotions are the least greasy and the most liquid of the three. Ointments are pretty much nothing but a greasy substance, and creams are somewhere in the middle. The way they work is by supplying the skin with some moisture, especially lotions, but even more important - they work by not allowing the moisture to escape from the skin.
People with eczema usually have a deficiency of a protein called filaggrin, which is important because it helps the skin retain the moisture that's necessary for it to perform its protective function. When there's not enough filaggrin, the skin dries out and cracks, and even the smallest cracks can let some foreign substances in - be it fungi, bacteria or allergens.
In moderate to severe eczema cases, lotions will simply not be enough to keep the moisture from leaving the skin. Lotions are more watery than creams and ointments, and although they are more easily absorbed into the skin, they also tend to evaporate more quickly. They don't form an effective barrier to keep the moisture in. That's why lotions shouldn't be used in these types of cases of eczema.
In moderate or severe eczema cases, medications may be included into the treatment. Two types of medications are used: steroids and antihistamines. They both aim to keep the itching and inflammation down, although they work in different ways. Both can be applied topically, as a cream, possibly because a cream can form a protective layer much better than a lotion.
Lotions do play a part in dealing with eczema, during the calm periods between the inflammations, and when the condition is mild. Lotions are less greasy than the other moisturizers, which is what makes them a great first choice for regular moisturizing when not dealing with an inflammation.
Some of the most popular skin lotions are:
A lotion that is used on skin, which is neither affected by eczema or is prone to eczema, should be without any perfumes or other additives that can irritate sensitive skin, or even cause allergies. Most of the major manufacturers are aware of that and usually have products that contain only neutral additives if necessary. To find the right lotion it's best to ask a dermatologist or a pharmacist for a recommendation.
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