SKIN ALLERGY  OR ECZEMA

 

Allergy is common term we all know about. Allergy can affect many organ like eye, lungs etc. we would be talking about skin allergy in this blog. Intolerability of the skin to a certain substance is called allergy. Medically, we call skin allergy as eczema. Its notorious for being recurrent. But we can always nip the bud at the root and keep recurrences to minimum by having the right knowledge about the disease.  Knowing as to how and why eczema happens is the first step towards treatment.

 

HOW DOES ALLERGY  or ECZEMA LOOK LIKE?

Allergy may have various manifestations:

It may appear as red raised patches with white scales or as group of tiny water bubbles on red background. Bacterial infection may ensue on scratched skin and lead to development of pus. Itching is the hallmark of eczema.

Rashes can occur on any part of the body, not necessarily at the point of contact of allergen. They may either slowly spread to involve the entire body or may remain restricted to a certain body parts.

Microscopically, following things happen at the eczematous rash:

Blood vessels get dilated: giving rise to redness.

Fluid oozes out of blood vessels giving rise to swelling.

White blood cells from blood release certain substances giving rise to itching.

 

 

WHAT COULD BE THE CAUSE OF ALLERGY?

One can be allergic to anything under the sun including sun.  Any food item, any cosmetic, anything in the air, your pet, cement being blown in from the house etc. can trigger allergic response in the body.

The triggering substance can cause rashes after coming in direct contact with skin. Else after ingestion or inhalation too the triggering substance can cause skin rashes.

 

WHAT ARE THE TYPES OF ALLERGY?

There are two types of allergy:

Acute eczema: Skin developing allergy to a particular substance after very first exposure. Rashes are usually restricted to point of contact and develop within few hours of coming in contact with new substance.

Chronic eczema: Skin rashes slowly developing after years of exposure to certain substances.

Allergic attack my happen after the very first contact or after years of exposure to a particular substance. So when your doctor says you are allergic to your lipstick, it doesn’t matter you have been using it safely since years.

It’s like at times you hate a certain person instantly and at times you may start hating the person years later initially having loved them.

 

HOW DOES SKIN DEVELOP ALLERGY?

 

  1. Disrupted skin barrier: Skin protective barrier gets disrupted due to continuous exposure to harsh soaps containing SLS. Thus, allergens find easy access into body.
  2. The immune system overreacts: once the allergen enters body, it’s the duty of the immune system to throw the foreign substances out. But if, immune system over reacts, allergy and red rashes appear.

Allergic attack my happen after the very first contact or after years of exposure to a particular substance. So when your doctor says you are allergic to your lipstick, it doesn’t matter you have been using it safely since years.

 

WHAT IS THE TREATMENT?

 

  1. 1. Treatment primarily consists of finding the trigger and avoiding it.
  2. Avoid using harsh soaps for they disrupt the skin barrier. So stop using all soaps containing SLS like – Dettol, Lux, Lifeboy etc. Use Dove instead which is SLS free.
  3. Moisturizing the skin with moisturizer containing oats and ceramides is of prime importance as it helps heal the disrupted skin barrier. And at the same time it hydrates the skin.
  4. Flax seed oil: Apply flax seed oil just before bathing. They would lock in the skin natural oil and moisturizer and won’t allow soap to rip it off while bathing. Plus it contains essential fatty acids which heal the disrupted skin barrier.
flax seed oil
  1. For the current allergic episode visit a dermatologist who would prescribe you steroid based creams for few days. Oral steroids may also be needed in case of very severe reaction.

 

By:

Dr. Anvika Mittal

9999 747 717

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BEST SCAR REMOVAL CREAM

Before looking for best scar removal creams, know what skin actually have. And what it requires.  Skin can have either marks or scars. Marks and scars are different.

SCARS ON SKIN

Scar means a depression in skin. It’s formed due to damage up to deeps layers of skin. Damage can be caused either by pimples, trauma, surgery etc. Skin heals by a scar formation. Which is visible as a depression and change in skin texture. Microscopically the damage destroyed the collagen and replaced it with the scar tissue. Collagen is the main building block of the skin.

Scar

MARKS ON SKIN 

Marks means blackish or reddish discoloration of skin. Damage is limited to superficial layers of skin. It’s not deep.

Black Marks

MARKS TREATMENT

Marks can be treated with creams. That’s because marks involve only superficial damage to skin. Creams can penetrate up to superficial layers of skin.

Creams can’t penetrate deep. Thus, no cream can treat scars. All claims of scar removal creams like Noscar cream or Mederma  are false. Though there is one exception. Creams containing tazarotene can heal scars up to certain extent. That’s because they are very strong retinoids. Retinoids are known to stimulate skin to form new collagen. As skin forms new collagen, collagen fills the scars from beneath, decreasing their depth and visibility. Tazarotene has to be used only on dermatologist’s prescription.

SCARS TREATMENT

Scars are formed due to breakage of building blocks of skin: collagen and elastin. They involve deep damage of skin. Thus, only lasers or micro needling can help. They can penetrate deep into skin giving strong enough stimulus to form new collagen.

As new collagen forms it slowly fills scars from beneath. With time, scars look less visible.

LASER SCAR TREATMENT BEFORE AFTER

LASER TREATMENT FOR SCAR

There is variety of laser treatments for scar:

Co2 fractional laser: It destroys the old scar telling skin to replace with new collagen. There is a post treatment healing time. That is minute crusts are formed the next day. Crusts fall off own its own in next 5 to 7 days time.  Face doesn’t look presentable during this time.

Non ablative laser:  Works on the same principal as Co2 ablative laser. Difference lies in the fact that it’s a less strong stimulus. Thus requires more number of sessions as compared to co2 fractional to get similar results. Advantage is that there is no or minimum post treatment healing time. Thus, person can return to work sooner.

Fractional Microneedling: This is the latest advancement in treatment of scars. Microneedles penetrate deep into skin and release radiofrequency energy. Depth of the needle can be controlled depending upon the depth of the scars. It may vary from 0.5 mm to 3.5 mm. There is no post treatment healing time. Except for redness for few hours. Thus, person can resume work faster.

FRACTIONAL RADIOFREQUENCY

Dermaroller: Also called poor man’s laser. It’s a small device with microneedles which when run in to and fro direction over scars help heal them. It’s a less strong stimulus compared to lasers.

 

Make sure to get these treatments done by a dermatologist. Saloon and spa are not recommended. To avoid side effects of laser it’s important to get it done by a expert who has the complete knowledge.

 

BLOG – DR ANVIKA

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