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Atopic skin

The atopic skin is a chronic disease characterized by extreme dryness of the skin, and desquamation and irritation. It evolves over time, giving rise to various outbreaks during which the symptoms become more noticeable. Although there is currently no definitive cure, daily skin care can protect it.

It is interesting to know what is known as the itch and scratch cycle . It begins with the dryness of the skin, which leads to irritation and infection of the dermis. Thus, inflammation occurs, thereby leading to itching and scratching. In this way, the cycle begins again with the dryness of the skin.

What is atopic skin?

Atopic skin is a skin disorder whose main characteristic is excessive dryness of the skin, which causes irritation and itching. It is therefore an extreme condition of very dry skin, with a very low percentage of water and fat. That is why it tends to flake and irritate with great ease.

This disease affects approximately 20% of children, many of whom also suffer from it in their adult life. Experts point out that the prevalence of atopic skin is increasing due to numerous factors: pollution, poor sleep quality , stress , etc.

Although it can develop in all areas of the body , it especially affects the face, as well as the areas of flexion and the scalp. Also in the legs and buttocks.

Atopic dermatitis in babies

Babies are precisely one of the population groups that suffer the most from this disease. The atopic dermatitis develops especially in the face and the scalp, trunk and extremities. Regarding the signs, in the vast majority of cases the affected area is inflamed and red.

Atopic dermatitis in children

Although the most common is that children have already presented some sign of atopic dermatitis as babies, in some cases the disease can manifest for the first time during childhood. The most common locations in children are the folds of the joints , such as the knees or the elbow.

Atopic dermatitis in adults

In the case of adults, the atopic skin lesions are more chronic. The main symptom is the dryness of the dermis, which is accompanied by itching and irritation . Lesions occur mainly on the nape, wrists, and the back of the feet.

Causes of atopic skin

Numerous studies carried out recently have shown that people who suffer from this disease are genetically predisposed to develop it. Therefore, genetics is the main cause of atopic skin.

  • Genetics: there is a direct relationship between the following diseases: atopic dermatitis, asthma and hay fever . Thus, if one of the parents suffers from any of these disorders, there is a high probability that their children will suffer from atopic skin. As is logical, the risk increases significantly if both parents have one of these diseases.
  • Climate: people who live in cold climates are more likely to suffer from this skin disorder.
  • Gender: in general, it is women who suffer the most from atopic dermatitis.
  • Age of the mother: those children whose mother is older than forty years are more likely to suffer from the disease.

Risk factors for atopic skin

However, there are a number of factors that can worsen the symptoms of this disorder.

One of the most common are allergies and colds . Generally mild illnesses but that can cause further irritation and peeling of the skin.

Of course, the fact of being in contact with irritating materials , such as perfumes or chemicals. Stress is currently one of the main risk factors for atopic skin, both in adults and children.

And finally, certain lifestyles can also lead to a greater predisposition to suffer from this disorder: sedentary lifestyle, abuse of junk food, few hours of sleep, etc.

Symptoms of atopic skin

Atopic skin gives rise to a number of symptoms to which it is important to pay special attention. As we have pointed out, this is a disease that mainly affects babies and children , although it can also occur in adults.

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The most common sign is that the skin is very dry and tight . In addition, it has a dull, lifeless appearance. In a high percentage of cases, itching is present, which can become very intense, and even affect the daily activities of those suffering from the disease.

The skin also appears inflamed and red . In the most severe cases, small bumps may develop on the dermis. Special care must be taken with injuries when scratching as small wounds can occur. In these cases the risk of infection is very high.

Diagnosis of atopic skin

Given the symptoms described in the previous section, it is advisable to see a doctor as soon as possible. Although atopic skin is not a serious disorder, it requires treatment.

First, the doctor establishes the medical history of the patient , paying attention to the indications that he manifests, as well as the family history. Next, you must proceed to rule out other possible pathologies whose symptoms are similar to those of atopic skin: fungal infection, psoriasis , etc.

In the case of babies and children, they must present at least three of the following characteristics: the first episode appears before the two years of age, the parents present a history of dry skin, lesions in the folds , eczema and irritations.

Treatment of atopic skin

Once the diagnosis of atopic skin has been confirmed, the doctor establishes the most appropriate treatment based on the symptoms presented by the patient. The main objective is to keep the lesions in the dermis under control, in addition to minimizing irritation and itching .

Cream for atopic skin

The main treatment of this disease consists of the application of a crown for the atopic skin . These are corticosteroids that significantly relieve symptoms and accelerate the healing process of the skin.

When applying it, it is best to add a small amount of cream and spread it properly to facilitate absorption. After applying the corticosteroid cream , what is known as an emollient cream can be applied, which deeply hydrates the skin.

How to avoid atopic skin

The truth is that there is no 100% foolproof method to avoid this disease. However, there are a number of recommendations that are worth following to reduce the risk of developing it.

  • Shower: maintaining a suitable water temperature is essential. Experts say that it is best if the water is warm, that is, neither too cold nor too hot. In addition, for certain areas such as the genitals it is advisable to use specific gels for hygiene. Finally, it should be noted the importance of giving small touches on the skin to dry the skin. Rubbing it can cause irritation and flaking.
  • Sweating: one of the main causes of atopic skin is sweating. Well, to avoid it as much as possible it is advisable to use breathable garments.
  • Moisturizing creams: both in children and in adults it is recommended to use moisturizers appropriate to the type of skin.
  • New garments: when using new garments for the first time, it is advisable to wash them beforehand. This way, residues of dyes or perfumes are eliminated.
  • Food: food plays an essential role in both the appearance and the health of the dermis. To avoid this disorder, it is better to avoid nuts and dairy products.
  • Activities: and, finally, taking into account that stress is one of the main triggers of atopic skin outbreaks, it is advisable to do activities such as yoga.


The incidence of atopic skin has increased dramatically in recent years, especially in Western countries. Experts point out that in just three decades the number of cases has doubled due to its link to asthma and hay fever.

Those who suffer from this disease very often suffer other related complications: stress, low self-esteem , etc. As we have pointed out, it is important to pay special attention to the skin care routine l and to follow some basic recommendations.

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Hello Readers, I am Nikki Bella a Psychology student. I have always been concerned about human behavior and the mental processes that lead us to act and think the way we do. My collaboration as an editor in the psychology area of ​​Well Being Pole has allowed me to investigate further and expand my knowledge in the field of mental health; I have also acquired great knowledge about physical health and well-being, two fundamental bases that are directly related and are part of all mental health.

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