Eczema

Robin Borkowsky, MD, FAAD -  - Dermatologist

21st Century Dermatology

Robin Borkowsky, MD, FAAD

Dermatologist located in Mid-Town, New York, NY

Most common in children, but affecting people of all ages, eczema (atopic dermatitis) is an uncomfortable, itchy skin condition. Dr. Robin Borkowsky, of 21st Century Dermatology in New York, New York understands the symptoms of eczema and knows how to treat this chronic condition effectively. Dr. Borkowsky will assess your symptoms and lifestyle factors to create a customized treatment plan to relieve itching and minimize flare-ups. Call or schedule a consultation online to discover more about relief for recurring eczema symptoms.

Eczema Q & A

What is eczema?

Eczema is a chronic skin condition that causes red, itchy areas on the body. Although there is no cure for eczema, you can take measures to help prevent outbreaks by using moisturizers and medicated creams as needed.

Atopic dermatitis often begins before the age of five and continues to flare and subside throughout adolescence and adulthood. If left untreated, symptoms may be so uncomfortable that it is hard to sleep well. If you have eczema, it’s important to get help because treating it can make a big difference in the quality of your life.

What are the symptoms of eczema?

Typical eczema symptoms include:

  • Dry, itchy, cracked skin
  • Accompanying hay fever or asthma
  • Red to brownish-gray patches of skin, like a rash
  • Small raised bumps that may crust and peel when scratched
  • Thick, cracked, scaly skin
  • Raw, swollen skin as a result of scratching

Atopic dermatitis often looks like a rash or skin allergy and most commonly appears on: 

  • Hands and wrists
  • Feet and ankles
  • Neck and chest
  • Inside elbows and knees
  • Eyelids or other areas of your face
  • Scalp

What causes eczema?

For those with eczema, their skin fails to provide full protection from environmental irritants, bacteria, and allergens, so skin becomes inflamed. Certain food allergies may also cause eczema symptoms, especially in young children. Stress, heredity, and an overactive immune system may also be contributing factors.

Cold, dry climates that produce excessively dry skin or hot, humid conditions in which you sweat a lot may also trigger flare-ups. For some, skin allergies to certain fabrics and soaps can cause an eczema rash to develop.

What are the treatments for eczema symptoms?

Once a board-certified dermatologist like Dr. Borkowsky rules out other conditions and determines that your particular form of dermatitis is eczema, she recommends effective treatment options. If your eczema is mild, some remedies may include:

  • Mild, moisturizing soaps and moisturizers for sensitive skin
  • Shorter showers using warm, instead of hot, water
  • Managing stress levels with regular exercise and relaxation
  • Using a home humidifier during cold, dry winter months

If your eczema is more severe and your lifestyle changes aren’t helping, Dr. Borkowsky may prescribe both topical and oral medications. These may include antihistamines, corticosteroids, immunomodulators, or newer non-steroidal injectable eczema medicines. You may also get additional relief from ultraviolet light therapy.

For effective eczema relief, schedule an appointment online or call the Midtown Manhattan office.