What Could be Causing Itchy, Red Skin
Redness and itching are two common symptoms that affect all of us from time to time. Usually, rashes are transient, and they clear up on their own. If patches of dry, red, itchy skin persist or come and go frequently, you may want to explore the chance that you have a chronic skin condition. Two of the prevalent problems that are diagnosed, eczema and psoriasis, may look similar. Here, we discuss the how to differentiate between them.
Both eczema and psoriasis can cause general skin inflammation that looks like a rash. Where they differ is in their cellular makeup.
Eczema is a type of skin inflammation that may flare up in response to specific triggers, such as warmer temperatures. There are several forms of eczema, with atopic dermatitis being the most common among people of all ages. Eczema often develops in childhood. From early in life, this condition may flare up periodically, requiring medical treatment to soothe irritated skin.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that is rooted in the immune system. It is categorized as an autoimmune disease, meaning that the immune system is not functioning correctly and its dysfunction is causing skin cells to multiply too quickly. The buildup of skin cells is referred to as plaques. These cells may look like silvery scales that cover inflamed, red, itchy skin.
The redness and itching that occur with each of these conditions may be difficult to identify accurately without a thorough skin examination. Your dermatologist can observe your skin and notice small details like the thickness of the skin in areas of inflammation or the overall dryness of the affected tissue.
Treating Chronic Skin Conditions
Chronic skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis can be troubling. Maintaining optimal skin health is much easier when you know what you’re dealing with. Although specific lifestyle habits can decrease the severity of eczema and psoriasis flare-ups, medical treatment is necessary for each of these conditions to be managed as well as possible.
Treatments for eczema and psoriasis range from topical cortisone creams to immunotherapy with oral medication to phototherapy. If over-the-counter cortisone and healthy lifestyle habits such as eating well and limiting alcohol consumption do not help alleviate redness and itching, call Dermatology & Skin Surgery Center at 610-594-6660. We proudly serve patients from Coatesville, Exton, Kennett Square, and surrounding areas.