Eczema is a common skin problem that affects kids, teens, and adults. But what exactly causes eczema and how do you treat it?
In this article, we’ll discuss eczema, what causes it, its symptoms, and how to treat it. Once we have a more solid understanding of the condition, we can then find ways to treat and manage its symptoms. We’ll also talk about the lingering questions on using moringa oil for eczema, how effective is it, and can moringa cure eczema, among others.
What is eczema?
Eczema, or Atopic Dermatitis (AD), is a skin condition that causes itchy and inflamed skin. Usually, it affects the face, the insides of the elbows, the backs of the knees, and in some cases, most of the body.
Usually, eczema starts early. A child may be two to three months old when they start showing symptoms like itchy, scaly skin; rashes on the cheeks, arms, and legs; and cracks behind the ears. With age, eczema has these signs and symptoms: a rash that begins behind the elbows or knees; or the wrists, neck, or ankles.
While eczema is not contagious, it is definitely uncomfortable for those who have it. Their skin is extremely dry and easily irritated, not to mention itchy most of the time. The appearance of scaly or thicker, leathery skin can also impact your confidence to a degree.
Given the different types of skin conditions, a lot of people often refer to eczema as atopic dermatitis, because it is the most common type. This means there are other types of eczema, but we’ll go over them later.
When talking about atopic dermatitis, we have to break it down accordingly by its name—the term “atopic” means that the condition is related to the immune system, while “dermatitis” means skin inflammation. This means that atopic dermatitis refers to skin inflammation involving the immune system.
What causes eczema?
Researchers believe that eczema is hereditary, meaning those with eczema likely have family members with the same skin condition. If both parents, for example, have atopic dermatitis, the risk that their children develop the condition as well is higher. Environmental factors can be another cause for eczema. Some individuals with eczema may have certain triggers, like food allergies, dust mites, harsh chemicals, and even emotional stress.
It bears noting that eczema is not contagious, and that some people outgrow it eventually, while others will have to go through adulthood with the condition.
Here are the possible causes that trigger eczema:
- Detergents with irritants
- Chemical shampoos and soaps
- Allergens such as dust mites, pets, pollen, and mold
- Bacteria like staphylococcus aureus and fungi
- Extreme weather temperatures, whether hot or cold
- Excessive perspiration
- Various food products like dairy, eggs, nuts, soy, and wheat, among others
- Stress can worsen symptoms
- Hormonal changes, especially in women during pregnancy or menstrual cycle
What are the symptoms of eczema?
The symptoms of eczema, or atopic dermatitis, will often depend on the age of a person. The severity of the symptoms can also vary accordingly. These symptoms appear for a time and can either worsen or completely clear up.
Here are the different manifestations of eczema’s symptoms.
General Symptoms of Eczema
Fortunately, most cases of eczema will exhibit mild symptoms, which can include:
- Dry skin
- Scaling skin
- Flushed skin
- Open and crusted sores
It is important to remember that severe symptoms will warrant professional medical attention. Rubbing and scratching are not advised, as it can only worsen the condition and lead to infection. Visit a dermatologist if patches or rashes refuse to disappear.
Eczema symptoms in infants
Babies under the age of two are not immune to eczema and can be quite common. The symptoms of atopic dermatitis in babies include:
- Rashes on the scalp and cheeks
- Blistering rashes that leak fluid
- Itchiness that can affect their sleeping habits
Eczema symptoms in children
For children ages two and above, the symptoms of eczema can include any of the following:
- Rashes on different parts of the body, such as behind the creases in the elbows or knees, on the neck, wrists, ankles, and the folds or creases of skin between the buttocks and legs
- Thickening skin or Lichenification, which can form into a permanent itch on the body
- Rashes that can be bumpy, dark, or light patches
By adolescence, it is estimated that children who have developed eczema before they turn five years of age will have outgrown these symptoms.
Eczema symptoms in adults
The most common symptoms of eczema or atopic dermatitis in adults can include any of the following:
- Scaly rashes in different parts of the body
- Extreme dryness of the skin
- Itchy rashes
- Skin infections
Adults will experience dry and sensitive skin that is easily irritated. The affected areas will usually be on the eyelids, hands, or on large areas of the body. The affected areas are often dependent on frequent and harsh scratching or rubbing, which can lead to inflammation or worsen the itchiness.
Types of eczema
As mentioned earlier, eczema is often used to refer to atopic dermatitis, but there are different types of eczema, which include:
- Allergic contact dermatitis refers to the skin condition that is triggered upon skin contact with an allergen.
- Dyshidrotic eczema refers to the blisters that form due to skin irritation in the palms of the hands and soles of the feet.
- Discoid eczema refers to the round-shaped patches of scaling and crusty in irritated skin, which can also be itchy.
- Stasis dermatitis refers to irritated skin in the lower leg, which often involves problems in blood circulation.
- Neurodermatitis refers to the scaly and itchy areas of the skin on the body, often caused by insect bites.
For people with intense symptoms, it is advisable to consult a dermatologist for treatment options, such as prescription medication.
How to treat and manage eczema
With good skin care and a healthy lifestyle, most eczema will improve. Try these tips to reduce the severity of eczema:
1. Change your bathing habits.
For both children and adults, opt for warm water when bathing instead of hot water. Using a mild cleanser such as Moringa-O² Malunggay Herbal Soap helps gently cleanse relieve itching. After bathing, gently pat skin with towel.
2. Choose a thick, moisturizing lotion.
Thick lotions are better for addressing skin dryness. Apply the Moringa-O² Herbal Moisturizing Lotion while skin is still slightly damp from your bath. Applying this herbal lotion at least twice a day also helps prevent dryness and cracking, which may lessen the need for eczema medication.
3. Trim your fingernails.
This is especially true for kids because they’re likely to puncture the skin from scratching. For babies, putting on cotton gloves at night may keep them from scratching while they’re asleep.
4. Wash clothes carefully.
Use a laundry detergent that’s formulated for sensitive skin and avoid scented fabric softeners. Also, for new clothes for babies and smaller children, be sure to remove the clothing tags and wash them after purchasing.
Is there a cure for eczema?
There is no known cure for eczema or atopic dermatitis. That being said, treating the skin condition is anchored upon healing the affected area of the skin, addressing its symptoms, and managing flare ups.
Seeking help from a doctor can result in different medications and treatment options. These solutions can range from any of the following:
- Prescription medication such as topical corticosteroid creams, ointments, or lotions to address inflammation and relieve the nagging symptoms of eczema, such as itchiness. Topical calcineurin inhibitors, meanwhile, serve to help address the immune system and reduce the frequency of flare ups through decreasing inflammation.
- Oral medication can involve systemic corticosteroids and immunosuppresants, to be taken through injections or oral tablets. These are often recommended for only a limited period, usually to see how responsive the prescriptions are in addressing the symptoms of eczema.
- If there is evidence of bacterial infection, antibiotics can also be prescribed.
- Allergic dermatitis can warrant the prescription of antihistamines.
- Phototherapy involves the use of UVA or UVB waves.
Depending on one’s age and the severity of the condition, doctors will have different treatment strategies, as eczema also goes away on its own. And while it can be a lifelong struggle for some people, there are various ways to treat eczema and its symptoms.
There are natural remedies that can be prepared at home, such as using ingredients like aloe vera, coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, and moringa extracts.
Moringa for eczema: An herbal remedy
Now that we’ve discussed eczema and how to treat it, let’s get into understanding how to use moringa for eczema.
As firm believers in the natural healing properties of moringa, aka “the super plant,” Moringa-O2 offers a line of gentle yet effective skin care products that rely on a powerful trio of herbal extracts: moringa oil, sunflower oil, and olive oil.
Why is moringa good for eczema?
The moringa oleifera plant goes by many names across the world: the drumstick tree, the horseradish tree, or the ben oil tree, among others, but its popularity is rooted in its long history of medicinal use in a variety of cultures.
Its medicinal properties and health benefits include antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antidepressant characteristics, which make it an effective remedy for eczema.
Rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, using moringa oil for eczema keeps the skin healthy, nourished, and moisturized, preventing symptoms from worsening.
What exactly is in moringa that makes it a powerful herbal extract?
If you’re wondering how can moringa cure eczema, then here are the vitamins, minerals, and compounds in one of nature’s most prolific plants that help address many skin, scalp, and hair issues:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B or thiamine
- B2 or riboflavin
- B3 or niacin
- Folate and ascorbic acid in Vitamin C
Moringa is also low in harmful fats, such as cholesterol, and high in healthy fatty acids.
Keep Your Skin Clear, Healthy, and Protected with Moringa-O2
Since eczema or atopic dermatitis offers no cure, the best way to go about this annoying skin condition is keeping the skin clear, healthy, and protected. Natural remedies such as Moringa-O2’s line of herbal skin care products can help address the symptoms of eczema by going straight to the source—dry, sensitive, and unhealthy skin.
The Moringa Herbal Therapy Oil for Hair, Scalp, and Skin, a dermatologically tested and paraben-free formula, offers the antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties that nourish the skin and help soothe the pain and irritation caused eczema. Use the therapy oil twice a week on your skin or as frequently as necessary after showering.
For any questions or inquiries on using moringa for eczema, feel free to send us a message.