Eczema treatment and remedies


Eczema

SKIN – Eczema



The skin covers and protects muscles, bones, blood vessels, nerves, inner organs, etc. It aids in providing physical make-up and appearance. It also helps in regulating our body temperature with blood circulation and sweat. So any disease or disturbance in the skin will make one suffer cosmetically as well as with disease symptoms. Nowadays nearly 25 per cent of the people suffer from one skin complaint or the other. The most common among them is eczema.
Eczema commonly refers to non-contagious, chronic, inflammatory scaly skin lesion. It usually present itself as itching rashes with redness, swelling, papules, vesicles, pustules, ulcers, oozing sticky discharges, crusts formation and skin thickening which finally end in leathery skin. Remissions and relapse with flare-ups (in weeks or months or even years or decades) are very common events in case of eczema.

Causes and incidences
 – The cause for eczema is always said to be unknown. It is supposed to be inherited through genes. The common triggers are dryness, sweat, low humidity, acids, irritants, alkali, detergents, meat, egg, fish, cosmetics, costumes, jewellery, nylon socks, drugs lowering immune mechanism, stress and skin diseases like scabies, herpes, erysipelas, impetigo, urticaria, dermatitis.
Even though eczema is supposed to be inherited, it can present its symptoms at any age and at any place. Eczema is more common in the leg, hand, scalp and forehead. Also, eczema occurs more closely with asthma and other allergy problems. Triggers enhance early presentation. Eczema usually gets worse during winter, since blood supply to the skin/extremities will be less. This makes the skin dry, weak and to crack which paves the way for infection/invasion of bacteria. Also, eczema seems to get worse in temperate climates due to undue sweating which can cause/induce more itching/scratching.

Types
 – Eczema may be acute or chronic by the nature of symptom presentation. It is mostly localised, but can also very rarely occur as a generalised condition. It may be of dry or wet (oozing) type. Usually it is classified with its causative factor/triggers, i.e., as exogenous or endogenous which means due to external factors or internal factors.
According to the occurrence, character, nature and reaction of the eczema, it is named as Allergic contact eczema, Atopic eczema, Asteatotic eczema, Seborrhoeic eczema, Gravitational eczema, Discoid eczema, Pompholyx eczema, Eczema erythematosum, Eczema vesiculosum, Eczema papalosum, Eczema squamosum, Eczema sclerosum, Eczema fissurum.

Symptoms
 

Usually symptoms vary from person to person in presentation, place, intensity and suffering. The lesion may remain in one place or have the tendecny to spread to other places adjacently or otherwise. Likewise, after remission, the lesion may recur in the same place or in a different place. The common symptoms are
  • Dry, itchy, scaly rash
  • Raised patch with ill-defined margin
  • Unpleasant feeling – like tickling, pricking, creeping, pinching, annoying, etc.
  • Uncontrollabe tendency to scratch
  • Scratch provoking cracks
  • Burning pain after scratching
  • Redness with odema (swelling)
  • Exudation – sticky discharges
  • Ends in crust formation, thickening (hyperkeratosis – leathery in appearance)
  • Discolouration of the skin
  • Restlessness and irritability due to itch which disturbs work and sleep
Diagnosis – can be easily made out by simple examination by the doctor with a magnifying lens. Even though eczema cannot be fixed with any tests, tests can rule out other diseases to fix the complaint as eczema. Eczema can be fixed with its close relation to allergic problem and wheezing. Other than routine blood tests Tc, Dc, Esr, Hb, absolute eosinophil count, blood sugar, etc., skin swab and culture may be necessary to rule out other complaints. Allergy test (patch or prick test) are also often evaluated to note allergens that need to be avoided.
PREVENTION & MANAGEMENT



 Since cause is unknown and suspected to be inherited, no one can aim/claim to prevent eczema. But caring skin even in a simple manner can prevent triggers and flare-ups. Preventing flare-ups is more important since no one can guarantee total cure even after prolonged medication. This means that people should take care of their skin (for moisture) in a continuous manner, even after active medication.
The do’s and don’ts for preventing flare-ups of eczema are:

Do’s
  • Control scratching
  • Wash and keep the parts clean
  • Use moisturiser to avoid dryness of skin especially in winter
  • Keep nails short and trim
  • Maintain personal hygiene
  • Dry the sweat fast
Take
  • A lot of water to maintain good hydration
  • Fresh fruits and vegetables for healthy skin especially carrot, apple, pineapple, papaya, cherry, ginger, beetroot and spinach
  • Vitamins A, C and zinc supplements for healthy skin
Avoid

  • Dryness
  • Scratching, to avoid infection
  • Irritants or allergic substances – food / pollens / chemicals / drugs
  • Long time exposure of extreme temperatures / direct sunlight
  • Swimming pool water
  • Excessive sweating
  • Cosmetics – strong soaps, powders, perfumes
  • Stimulants – coffee, alcohol, smoking & chewing tobacco
  • Preservative added tin-packed foods / drinks
  • Animal proteins i.e. meat, fish, egg, also mil in high concentration
  • High sugars, i.e. chocolate, pastry, cakes
  • Emotional or mental stress
  • Unnecessary medication
  • Woollen clothes
COMPLICATIONS – Eczema can cause irritability and lack of concentration due to constant itching or irritation. Eczema as such won’t produce any complication unless otherwise it is complicated, i.e. only when it gets suppressed does it lead to other diseases / disorders or organ damages.
Till the itching remains on the surface, it seems as if it is going away, but when it is arrested or suppressed, it will burst inside creating other diseases. The main complication will be only from adverse effects of the drugs used for the eczema.
GENERAL TREATMENT 



Allopathic approach is usually against the causative factor or disease. In eczema, since the causative factor has not been identified, treatment is aimed at temporary management with medications and external applications.
Dermatologists or cosmetologists usually prescribe ointments, oils or skin soothing / smoothening lotions. The uncontrollable flare-ups usually drive patients to frequently get prescribed with anti-histamines and steroidal creams that work only for a short term. The complaint often rebounds in due course on stopping the course of treatment and sometimes even while anti-histamines and steroidal ointments are in continuous use.
The anti-histamines usually compliment one with drowsiness and lack of concentration whereas the steroidal drugs / ointments suppress the disease and our immune force to drive it inside to get reflected in some other form i.e., either as asthma, fits, blood pressure, diabetes, or organ damage (kidney, liver). Sometimes, UV rays, phototherapy with psoralen will also be advised by the physician according to the resistance of the disease and its response to other treatment. Each one has its own adverse effect. Sometimes, it may also lead to risk of skin cancer.
In resistant eczema, before going to the doctor or after getting treatment, people would keep trying on their own to alleviate the complaint with external applications like olive oil, mustard oil, coconut oil, petroleum jelly, tar, turmeric, sandal, etc. Normally, none of these can give sustained relief for eczema. Some would go to hot spring places to wash away the eczema. Sulphur granules and other salts in the hot spring usually provide some relief, but that relief also cannot be sustained for long.
HOMEOPATHIC APPROACH 


Usually skin complaints are tough to treat and eczema and psoriasis are the toughest. Recurrences and remissions are very common in the treatment of eczema as every tide has its ebb. Nobody can claim complete cure since it can recur after 5-6 years or even more than that. So everyone should aim for a longer remission period. Homeopathy very commonly provides it without any side-effects. After Homeopathic treatment, one cannot notice the flare-ups i.e. ,even when it recurs, it is less intense and goes away soon. This shows that the disease is tapering with effective Homeopathy treatment.
The disappearance of the itch/scaly skin itself doesn’t mean that the disease is waning, i.e., skin rash can be easily made to disappear with steroidal external applications which will usually mask the complaint, but very temporarily.
Likewise, just applying moisturisers or having anti-allergic medicines will have effect / betterment for that day only and so it is of no value. It is like treating only the effects of internal disease(s) and not the disease itself. This palliative type of treatment usually drives the disease inner or deeper. Also, if suppression type of treatment is followed for quite a long time, then it is not only tough to cure the case but also difficult to treat or manage its side-effects which may endanger life. But, Homeopathy treats the symptoms of patients internally, rather than the disease or its effects.
It is difficult to avoid all the triggers all the time. In persons who follow only with preventive measures / avoidance, flare-up becomes more common when one gets exposed to allergens / irritants. Homeopathy can comfort modern living even in the midst of these pollutants by enhancing and strengthening the vital force i.e., immune mechanism.
To enjoy this benefit, one needs to take sweet pills (undergo medication) for a prolonged time with patience i.e. atleast one full season. Since Homeopathy treats everyone as a unique individual, what people need to do is to express their entire sufferings, feelings, allergies, medications, treatments, etc., to the healer without hiding them or forgetting them.
Homeopathic medicines commonly used for eczema are Acid nit, Anti crud, Apis mel, Ars alb, Bacillinum, Bovista, Cantharis, Causticum, Clematis, Crab apple, Dulcamara, Graphites, Hepar sulph, Hydrocotyle, Kali ars, Kali Brom, Merc sol, Mezereum, Nat mur, Petroleum, Psorinum, Radium Brom, Rhus tox, Sarasaparilla, Sepia, Silicea, Skookum chuk, Staphysagria, Sulphur, Tellurium, Thuja, Thyroidinum, Tuberculinum, Urtica urens, Zinc met, etc. These Medicines should be taken under the advice and diagnosis of a qualified Homeopath.

for new hope

Dr. S. Chidambaranathan, BHMS, MD (Homeo)
Laxmi Homeo Clinic
24 E. New Mahalipatti Road
Madurai, TN 625 001
India

Tel:  +91-452-233-8833 | +91-984-319-1011 (Mob)
Fax: +91-452-233-0196
E-mail:  drcheena@yahoo.com


(Disclaimer - The contents of this column are for informational purpose only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional healthcare advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of healthcare professional for any health problem or medical condition.)

Dr Cheena

Dr Cheena

Simple notes on Drcheena

Dr S. Chidambaranathan is a compassionate and highly skilled homeopathic doctor who has been rated as the Best Homoeopathic Doctor in Madurai.

Because of him “LAXMI HOMOEO CLINIC” is a “Healing Gateway” Imparting quality treatment to his patients with dignity and utmost care.

He is always reachable and concerned for comfort of the sick to cope up with their expectation. Because of his treatment with highest standard many patients were able to avoid surgeries in many incidences. In LAXMI HOMOEO CLINIC patients are treated with dignity, kindness and respect with privacy.

Further Dr S. Chidambaranathan helps the patients to manage their health on their own and to stay independent from all sorts of medicines as much as possible.

To cope up with ever changing trends in medicine and disease management he continues to upgrade his knowledge evident by the various papers presented
in different seminars and articles published online by him.

What is homeopathy ?

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The contents of this column are for informational purpose only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional healthcare advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of healthcare professional for any health problem or medical condition.

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