The terms dermatitis, eczema and atopic eczema are used interchangeably. It refers to any abnormal skin condition, which is accompanied with irritation, redness, itching, blisters, inflammation and lichenification symptoms. Eczema is a relatively common problem with 20% children getting afflicted by it. Many of them outgrow with time, and about 10% adults experience eczema. It cannot be cured, but treatment is done with medications and lifestyle modifications to manage discomfort symptoms.
Eczema and Calamine Lotion
With a plethora of topical medications for eczema treatment in the market, selecting an effective ointment or lotion is not so easy. While it is best to consult a doctor before purchasing any of these topical formulations, calamine lotion available over the counter is a safe product, and can be obtained without prescription. Using this topical preparation for a limited period may or may not cause adverse effects, but, avoid using it for long-term purposes without the supervision or prescription of a dermatologist.
Like other therapeutic drugs, the effectiveness of calamine lotion for eczema treatment is attributed to its chemical constituents. The prime ingredients of calamine are zinc oxide and ferric oxide. The zinc compound not only serves as a potent antiseptic agent to ward off infections, but it also helps in retaining skin moisture. Thus, calamine helps in keeping the skin soft and dry after application. Iron oxide is a main constituent in mineral makeup products, and brings about improvement in the skin tone.
In addition to anti-itch effect, calamine lotion is useful to shrink skin pores for those who have very oily skin. It is known to clear the impurities on the skin and makes the skin look radiant. Nevertheless, many people are concerned about the change in skin tone to pink color after applying calamine lotion. In such a case, check for reliable products that contain calamine, but are not distinctly pink in shade. Most likely, the chemical composition is different from true calamine lotion. Hence, make it a point to go through the ingredients before actually purchasing it.
Those who have had atopic eczema in their childhood years are already familiar with the pink colored calamine lotion. It is used for a wide range of skin disorders, especially those associated with intense itching. This thin consistent lotion is effective to alleviate rashes and itchiness. But, is it safe to use calamine lotion for eczema in babies? This skin formulation is good for using on sensitive skin. However, its effectiveness for treating eczema in babies cannot be guaranteed.
As far as use of calamine lotion for treating eczema is concerned, gently clean the affected skin areas with antiseptic soap and water. Pat it dry with a clean, soft towel, and avoid rubbing the skin. The point is, not to irritate affected skin at any cost. Following this, take some lotion and apply it over the itchy spots in a thin layer. Repeated application of calamine lotion, say 2-3 times in a day, are directed to combat intense itchiness. Or else, follow the tips mentioned on the product leaflet.
For best results, do not apply calamine lotion for eczema without prior cleaning of skin and avoid using it in large amount. These precautionary measures are intended to prevent clogging of the skin pores, which otherwise may cause comedones, acne or other skin problems. Last but not the least, direct exposure to zinc and iron oxides for an extended period is not good for skin and overall health. Hence, take the help of a dermatologist concerning long-term treatment options for eczema.
Though treating eczema and preventing skin outbreaks is possible, a cure for eczema is still underway. Part of the treatment objective is all about avoiding allergy, sun exposure, certain foods and other factors that trigger eczema flare-ups. So, follow the lifestyle changes, self-care tips and medications suggested by the concerned doctor to manage eczema effectually.