Eczema treatment using a probiotic

According to a new study by the NIH, probiotic skin creams look promising as a possible treatment for eczema.

What is eczema?

According to the National Institutes of Health,

“Eczema is a noncontagious inflammatory skin condition characterized by a dry, itchy rash.”

It commonly affects the cheeks, arms, and legs.

How common is eczema?

According to The National Eczema Association,

approximately 31 million Americans are affected with eczema.

“The prevalence of childhood eczema in the US is 10.7%”

“A recent study found that the prevalence of eczema in adults could be as high as 10.2%, which suggests that most children with eczema continue to be affected even in adulthood.”

Eczema is not contagious.

The cause of eczema not known.

Eczema is most likely caused by both genetic and environmental factors.

Eczema may get better for certain periods of time but it is often a chronic disease.

What is the most common type of eczema?

The most common type of eczema is atopic dermatitis.

Atopic dermatitis is most common in babies and children but adults can have it too.

Usually people who had eczema as a baby have sensitive skin as an adult.

What irritants can make eczema worse?

Soaps and detergents

Body lotions and perfumes

Clothes with synthetic fibers such as wool

Work related exposure. OSHA estimates that more than 13 million workers in the United States are potentially exposed to chemicals that can be absorbed through the skin.

Eczema treatment

Avoid harsh soaps that can dry your skin.

Apply moisturizer after a bath. A moisturizer can help aid with healing and prevention of dry skin.

Use soft cotton clothing.

Keep finger nails short.

Avoid smoking and exposure to smoke.

Change bedding once a week.

Change out carpet for tile and wooden floors.

Pets should be brushed to help reduce dander.

Stress management may help decrease flare ups of eczema.

Medications for eczema treatment

Steroid creams can help improve eczema.

Antihistamines can reduce itching.

Calcineurin inhibitors are immunomodulating agents, they act on the immune system to reduce skin inflammation.

Calcineurin inhibitors  block a chemical called calcineurin which activates inflammation in the skin and causes redness and itching of the skin. They cannot cure eczema but they can help treat it.

Light therapy for eczema treatment

If topical creams have failed light therapy may prove useful.

Both ultraviolet A or B light waves can be used to treat eczema.

 Probiotics and eczema treatment

According to the NIH,

Many microbes living on the skin are essential for good health of the skin.

The types of bacteria found on the skin on someone with eczema differs from those without eczema, there are more bacteria called Staphylococcus aureus.

“Recently, an NIH-funded research team found that healthy human skin harbors beneficial strains of Staphylococcus bacteria with the power to keep Staph aureus in check. To see if there might be a way to restore this natural balance artificially, the researchers created a lotion containing the protective bacteria and tested it on the arms of volunteers who had eczema.”

“Just 24 hours after one dose of the lotion was applied, the researchers found the volunteers’ skin had greatly reduced levels of Staph aureus. While further study is needed to learn whether the treatment can improve skin health, the findings suggest that similar lotions might offer a new approach for treating eczema and other skin conditions.”

The probiotics that were used were individualized depending on the type of bacteria that were cultured from the participants skin.

What eczema treatment do you use?

 

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