How Eczema Changes Over Time


Jennifer Larson

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person scratching arm

Eczema is the name for a family of itchy, irritating skin conditions. While certain kinds are more likely to first develop in childhood, others can and do develop in adulthood.

Learning more about the type of eczema you have and how it typically manifests can help you get a handle on successfully managing the symptoms. (Hint: try not to scratch!)

Understanding atopic dermatitis in adulthood.

When you say “eczema,” most people think of atopic dermatitis. That’s for good reason: atopic dermatitis is the most common type of eczema. Its hallmark is the itch-scratch-rash cycle. First, you feel an itch, and you scratch it. Then you develop a red, swollen rash, which may then crack, weep or bleed. Afterward, the rash will crust over and form scaly patches. Sometimes, you’ll go into a period of remission, without any flare-ups of eczema, only to experience an exacerbation later on down the road.

Caring for sensitive skin and eczema can be challenging, but with the right tips and tricks, you can give your skin the love it needs.

Medical Reviewer: William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS Last Review Date: Apr 28, 2017

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