There is no better time to get educated about eczema than Eczema Awareness Month! Chances are that you or someone you know or love have some form of eczema. There are many types of eczema, but the most common is atopic dermatitis, which affects 9.6 million children and 16.5 million adults in this country.
- Can greatly affect quality of life due to itching, scratching and lack of sleep
- CAN be controlled
- Has triggers that should be avoided
- Is not the same as an allergy
- Needs a solid bathing and moisturizing routine to maintain the skin barrier
The reasons behind atopic dermatitis are complex but ultimately lead to the immune system in the skin becoming overactive. This triggers inflammation that damages the skin barrier, leaving it dry and itchy. Studies show some people have a genetic mutation in a protein called filaggrin that helps our bodies maintain a healthy, protective skin barrier. Without enough filaggrin, moisture escapes causing dry skin.
Depending on someone’s age, eczema may appear in different locations as well as look different on the skin. Having a family member with atopic dermatitis, asthma or hay fever makes it more likely for him/her to have eczema. Seasonal flares, particularly during summer and winter, are common, and we can help people be prepared to limit them. Avoiding fragrances, even organic or natural ones, is very important.
Our focus needs to be on prevention as well as treatment. We design regimens for patients of all ages to try to restore their skin barrier and moisture to prevent flares. What products to use and HOW to use them are equally important. The world of eczema treatment has changed dramatically in the last 5 years from topical options including nonsteroids, light therapy, and systemic options, including Dupixent. Let us help you explore the options and make a regimen to get you (or our child!) comfortable and living life!
“After suffering with severe eczema for 8 years and repeatedly being given what I now know to basically be bandaids to the problem I went to see Dr. Masterpol. After one look at my skin and hearing about the great negative impact my skin condition had on my daily life and how much or restricted me she immediately took action to tackle the problem. She prescribed Dupixent which she knew would be met with resistance from the insurance company but she fought for me and won! I now exhibit no inflammation from my eczema and am now able to enjoy not just my day to day life but activities I have not been able to participate in since my initial flare up. Dr. Masterpol is truly the BEST – so knowledgeable and truly cares about her patients!” – Ariana