Antibiotics for Eczema
Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is caused by a gene variation that impacts the skins ability to protect itself against bacteria, allergens and irritants.
It also negatively affects the skins ability to retain moisture, resulting in dry, scaly skin that can be itchy and irritating.
Eczema is more common in children and typically lessons in severity with age, sometimes going away completely in adulthood.
Because it affects the skins ability to protect against bacteria, bacterial skin infections are more common in those with eczema. In these cases antibiotics can be prescribed to help rid the skin of the infection.
Symptoms of Eczema
It is important to know if you or your child has eczema (or something else) so you can take extra care of the skin to lesson severity of flare ups and protect against infections.
Common symptoms of eczema are:
- Dry skin
- Severe itching
- Red or gray-brown scaly patches on the: hands, feet, ankles, wrists, neck, chest, eyelids, inside the elbows, back of the knees, and for infants: the face, cheeks, and scalp
- Small, raised bumps that when scratched may leak and crust or scab over
- Scaly, cracked, thickened skin
- Raw, sensitive, or swollen skin from scratching
If you or your child are experiencing the symptoms above talk to a doctor for an official diagnosis and treatment plan.
It is also important to take precautions to prevent infections as the skin is more vulnerable.
Eczema and Bacterial Skin Infections
Those with eczema are prone to bacterial skin infections because itching increases the odds of breaks in the skin which bacteria can enter through. Additionally when skin becomes dry small cracks form that also act as entry points for harmful bacteria.
Children with eczema are at a higher risk of infection because they tend to itch more than adults.
If a bacterial skin infection happens it is important to get it treated right away. See your doctor or a PluchCare doctor for an antibiotic prescription as soon as possible.
Bacterial Infection Preventative Measures
While it is a good thing we have antibiotics to fall back on when a bacterial skin infection occurs, preventing them from happening in the first place is ideal.
Below is a list of preventative measures that not only reduce the odds of a bacterial infection but also help ease discomfort from eczema:
- Moisturize skin at least two times a day with unscented lotion (there are special over the counter creams you can buy specifically for eczema)
- Identify and avoid products and environments that lead to outbreaks
- Take shorter, cooler baths and showers to avoid drying out the skin
- Use gentle, unscented soaps
- Pat yourself dry instead of rubbing
- Refrain from itching as much as possible and if you do break your skin always wash the area well with unscented soap and water.
Following these simple precautions can help you avoid bacterial infections and an antibiotic prescription.
Book an appointment with a PlushCare doctor if you think you have eczema and/or a bacterial skin infection to get a prescription today.