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What treatments can be used to cure dermatitis?

Dermatitis is often treated with prescribed cortisone creams and lotions, but these must be used sparingly as they cause the skin to become thinner and more fragile with long-term use. Topical Immunomodulators like Elidel, Protopic and Douglan were developed after cortico-steroid treatments, effictively suppressing the immune system in the affected area and appearing to yield better results. Dermatitis severely dries out the skin, and keeping the affected area moistened with vitamin

A, D and/or E can promote healing and retain natural moisture.

Treating contact dermatitis begins with eliminating or avoiding the source of irritation. Prescription or over-the-counter corticosteroid creams can lessen inflammation and relieve irritation. Creams, lotions, or ointments not specifically formulated for dermatitis can intensify the irritation. Oral antihistamines are sometimes recommended to alleviate itching, and antibiotics are prescribed if the rash becomes infected. Medications taken by mouth to relieve symptoms of dermatitis can make skin red and scaly and cause hair loss. Patients who have a history of dermatitis should remove their rings before washing their hands. They should use bath oils or glycerine-based soaps and bathe in lukewarm saltwater. Patting rather than rubbing the skin after bathing and thoroughly massaging lubricating lotion or nonprescription cortisone creams into still-damp skin can soothe red, irritated nummular dermatitis. Highly concentrated cortisone preparations should not be applied to the face, armpits, groin, or rectal area. Periodic medical monitoring is necessary to detect side effects in patients who use such preparations on rashes covering large areas of the body.

Coal-tar salves can help relieve symptoms of nummular dermatitis that have not responded to other treatments, but these ointments have an unpleasant odor and stain clothing. Patients who have stasis dermatitis should elevate their legs as often as possible and sleep with a pillow between the lower legs. Tar or zinc paste may also be used to treat stasis dermatitis. Because these compounds must remain in contact with the rash for as long as two weeks, the paste and bandages must be applied by a nurse or a doctor. Coal-tar shampoos may be used for seborrheic dermatitis that occurs on the scalp. Sun exposure after the use of these shampoos should be avoided because the risk of sunburn of the scalp is increased.

Some herbal therapies can be useful for skin conditions. Among the herbs most often recommended are burdock root (arctium lappa), calendula (calendula officinalis) ointment, chamomile (matricaria recutita) ointment, cleavers (galium ssp.), evening primrose oil (oenothera biennis) and nettles (urtica dioica)

Contact dermatitis can be treated botanically and homeopathically. Grindelia (Grindelia spp.) and sassafras (Sassafras albidum) can help when applied topically. Determining the source of the problem and eliminating it is essential. Oatmeal baths are very helpful in relieving the itch. Bentonite clay packs or any mud pack draws the fluid out and helps dry up the lesions. Cortisone creams are not recommended.

Stasis dermatitis should be treated by a trained practitioner. This condition responds well to topical herbal therapies, however, the cause must also be addressed. Selenium-based shampoos, topical applications of flax oil and/or olive oil, and biotin supplementation are among the therapies recommended for seborrheic dermatitis.

More information on dermatitis

What is dermatitis? - Dermatitis, also known as eczema, is a skin irritation characterized by red, flaky skin, sometimes with cracks or tiny blisters.
Types of dermatitis - There are several different types of dermatitis and these have different causes. The most common ones are related to allergies.
Contact dermatitis - Contact dermatitis is a dermatitis which is caused by something in the outside world which comes into contact with the skin.
Atopic dermatitis - Atopic dermatitis is a chronic, itchy skin condition that is very common in children but may occur at any age. It is also known as eczema and atopic eczema.
Seborrheic dermatitis - Seborrheic dermatitis is a common inflammatory condition of the skin. Seborrheic dermatitis is a chronic, recurring scaly rash involving the face, ears, eyebrows, scalp, and the chest.
Nummular dermatitis - Nummular dermatitis (nummular eczematous dermatitis or nummular eczema) affects the hands, arms, legs, and buttocks of men and women older than 55 years of age.
Causes of dermatitis - Each type of dermatitis has different causes. Atopic dermatitis is caused by allergies, asthma. Seborrheic dermatitis is caused by overproduction of the oil glands.
Treatments of dermatitis - Dermatitis is often treated with prescribed cortisone creams and lotions. Treating contact dermatitis begins with eliminating or avoiding the source of irritation.
Prevention of dermatitis - The most effective method of dealing with any type of dermatitis risk is through prevention. Contact dermatitis can be prevented by avoiding the source of irritation. 
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All information is intended for reference only. Please consult your physician for accurate medical advices and treatment. Copyright 2005, health-cares.net, all rights reserved. Last update: July 18, 2005