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This category includes products such as creams for eczema and psoriasis, acne treatments, antifungal ointments, and medicated lotions for dry or itchy skin. Read More…

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    • About Psoriasis and Eczema

      Psoriasis and eczema are two distinct skin conditions that can cause discomfort and affect the quality of life. Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition where the immune system causes skin cells to grow faster than normal, resulting in thick, red skin with silvery scales, known as plaques. It’s a chronic disease, meaning it can flare up unexpectedly. Common areas affected include the scalp, elbows, knees, and lower back.

      Eczema, on the other hand, is often related to an overactive immune response to environmental triggers, leading to inflamed, itchy, and dry skin. People with a family history of eczema or other allergies are more likely to have it. It can appear anywhere on the body and is especially common in the folds of the skin.

      Both conditions can be exacerbated by certain triggers like stress, allergens, and skin irritants. They’re not contagious, and their symptoms can vary significantly from person to person.

      Managing these conditions involves a combination of skincare and lifestyle changes to avoid known triggers. For psoriasis, treatments may include topical creams, light therapy, and medications to slow down skin cell production. In the case of eczema, keeping the skin moisturised, avoiding irritants, and using anti-inflammatory medications can help control the condition.

    • Symptoms

      Symptoms of psoriasis typically include:

      Patches of skin that are dry and covered in scales, which can appear on any body part but are common on elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back.
      Skin discoloration with the patches varying from pink or red with white or silvery scales on lighter skin, to purple or dark brown with grey scales on darker skin tones.
      Itching or soreness in the affected areas.
      The condition often cycles, causing problems for weeks or months before subsiding.

      Symptoms of eczema include:

      Itchy skin which can become severely irritated and inflamed when scratched.
      Dry, sensitive skin that may have areas that are scaly or leathery.
      Patches that may be reddish (on lighter skin) or darker than the surrounding skin (on darker skin), brownish-grey in colour, or may not be clearly darker or lighter.
      Skin that can swell, leak fluid, and develop a crust when scratched.
      These symptoms can significantly impact comfort and quality of life, and if you suspect you might have psoriasis or eczema, it’s important to see a healthcare provider for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

    • Diagnosis

      Psoriasis and eczema are diagnosed by healthcare professionals through careful examination and patient history. With psoriasis, dermatologists often rely on a visual exam of the skin, nails, and scalp, as well as the patient’s medical and family history. If the diagnosis is uncertain, a skin biopsy may be performed to confirm it.

      Eczema diagnosis similarly involves an examination of the skin and a discussion about the patient’s personal and family medical history. A patch test might be used to determine if the condition is related to an allergy. In some cases, genetic testing may be necessary to differentiate between eczema and psoriasis.

      Both conditions involve overactive inflammatory pathways in the immune system, but they are triggered differently. Psoriasis is an autoimmune reaction leading to rapid skin cell turnover, while eczema may be triggered by an allergic reaction or sensitivity to substances or due to a defect in skin barrier proteins.

      Accurate diagnosis is key because it ensures that patients receive the right treatment, which can vary significantly between the two conditions.

    • Treatments

      Over-the-counter skin care products can be a helpful part of managing skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema. They offer a range of treatments to soothe the skin, reduce inflammation, and manage symptoms. Here’s a brief overview of how such products can aid in the care for these conditions:

      For psoriasis, over-the-counter products may help to moisturise the skin and reduce dryness and scaling. Moisturisers are essential as they help seal water in the skin, which can soothe dryness, assist in healing, and make the skin more comfortable.

      In the case of eczema, it’s vital to keep the skin hydrated to prevent dryness and itching that can lead to inflammation. Over-the-counter products often contain ingredients like ceramides and lipids that help repair the skin barrier and reduce moisture loss.

      Highlighted products:

      • Hydrocortisone Cream/Ointment 1% – 15g: Offers a mild steroid treatment for inflammatory skin conditions and can be particularly helpful in reducing the inflammation and itching associated with eczema.
      • Clotrimazole 1% Cream: This cream targets fungal skin infections and is beneficial in treating fungal-related skin conditions, which can sometimes occur alongside or be confused with eczema symptoms.
      • Octenisan Antimicrobial Wash Lotion: Suitable for all skin types, this wash lotion provides a mild and gentle cleansing option, which can be beneficial for those with sensitive skin conditions like eczema.
      • Acnecide 5% Topical Aqueous Gel: Contains Benzoyl Peroxide and is a topical treatment for acne, which some people with psoriasis may also experience.

      When using any over-the-counter product, it is essential to follow the directions on the label and be mindful of potential side effects such as skin irritation. If symptoms persist or if over-the-counter options do not provide relief, consulting a healthcare provider for prescription treatments or further advice may be necessary.

    • Prevention Strategies

      Preventing skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema involves a holistic approach that starts with understanding your skin’s needs and addressing them through a combination of lifestyle choices and skin care practices:

      Follow an Anti-inflammatory Diet: Consuming leafy greens, fresh fruits, and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids can help manage inflammation associated with skin conditions.
      Moisturise Regularly: Keeping the skin well-hydrated is crucial, especially after bathing, to lock in moisture.
      Gentle Skin Care: Use mild cleansers and avoid scrubbing the skin harshly. For those with sensitive skin, fragrance-free and gentle skincare products are recommended.
      Stress Management: Stress can trigger flare-ups, so finding healthy ways to manage stress can be beneficial.
      Avoid Known Triggers: Keep track of triggers that worsen your condition and try to avoid them. This could include certain fabrics, detergents, smoke, and stress.
      Protect Your Skin: Use sunscreen to protect your skin from sun damage, which can exacerbate conditions like psoriasis and eczema.
      Healthy Lifestyle Choices: Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, as these can also affect your skin’s health.

      Remember that what works for one person may not work for another, so it’s important to understand your body and any specific triggers or conditions that affect you.