5 effective treatments for atopic dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis is a kind of inflammation, which results in redness, itching, cracking and swelling of the skin. This is seen in adults but more commonly in children. This condition usually starts in childhood and its severity increases with age. Often, the rashes may ooze and thicken over time.
Even though this is an incurable disease, atopic dermatitis treatment options can help to relieve various symptoms such as severe itching, skin inflammation, skin infection, and scaly lesions. Treatments can also help to prevent the formation of new lesions. The symptoms can be controlled to some extent using various home treatments such as the ones given below:
- Mild atopic dermatitis treatment can be done at home using skin barrier repair moisturizers, which help to prevent dry skin. It is advisable to use thicker creams instead of lotions and ointments like petroleum jelly, which helps to lock in the moisture of the skin. These must frequently be used.
- Preventive care measures for atopic dermatitis treatment include bathing in lukewarm or warm water instead of hot water to prevent the skin from drying out, avoiding allergens such as harsh detergents or soaps that may trigger rash formation, and avoiding scratching of the affected areas.
Depending on the severity of the rashes, a doctor may prescribe any of the following treatments:
- When the rash covers large areas of the body, the doctor may prescribe high strength topical corticosteroids or oral corticosteroids. These are also used if there are skin infections.
- Treatments like phototherapy or psoralen plus ultraviolet light therapy (PUVA) which use exposure to ultraviolet light, with or without medication may be helpful.
- If other treatments don’t work, then interferon (a type of protein that the body produces and helps to fight infections; also available as a drug) or cyclosporine (a drug to suppress the immune system) is sometimes used in adults.
- Antihistamines (drugs used to treat allergies) are often prescribed to reduce itching.
- Another effective atopic dermatitis treatment method involves the use of wet bandages and topical corticosteroids for wrapping the affected area.
If the rashes don’t get better with these home treatments, it is better to seek medical attention immediately.