(The term eczema means “to boil over” in Greek. Poison ivy reactions, for instance, are a form of extreme eczema.)

“eczema” is a general term that most often refers to “atopic dermatitis”. If you are prone to eczema, whether as an adult or a child, general sensitive skin measures are usually your safest bet (see below). It is worth considering that what you think of as simple eczema, could be triggered by something specific you are being exposed to (common causes of contact allergy eczema include nickel, or work exposures), or it could be psoriasis.)

Childhood eczema (atopic dermatitis) is genetic and often inherited. Children with eczema often react to cats, dust, dust mite, fragrances, nickel, and sometimes foods such as eggs, milk, peanuts, and some fruit. Stress, dry weather, sweating and irritation can set off atopic dermatitis.

Kids with eczema sometimes have asthma, hay fever and allergies, and other family members often have these, as well.

Eczema usually hangs on throughout life, showing up in different ways. You might find yourself reacting in different ways at different times of your life.