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The Complete Guide to Eczema and Psoriasis

– Prevention, Treatment and Remedies

By Robert Ashe

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The Complete Guide to Eczema and Psoriasis by Robert Ashe

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The advice contained in this material might not be suitable for

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layperson about an important subject. The author obtained the

information from sources believed to be reliable and from his own

personal experience, but he neither implies nor intends any

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All claims made for any product, treatment or other procedure that

is reported in this book is only the author’s personal opinion. You

must do you own careful checking with your own medical advisor

and other reputable sources on any matter that concerns your

health or that of others.

Research is constantly changing theories and practices in this area.

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The Complete Guide to Eczema and Psoriasis by Robert Ashe

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The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional

medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of

your physician or other qualified health care provider with any

questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never

disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it for any

reason.

The author, publisher and distributors never give legal, accounting,

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The author, publisher and distributors particularly disclaim any

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The Complete Guide to Eczema and Psoriasis by Robert Ashe

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CONTENTS

CONTENTS........................................................................................... 2

1. Eczema and Psoriasis – An Introduction ...................................... 8

Causes ..................................................................................................................... 8

2. Specific Characteristics of Eczema and Psoriasis ..................... 10

Treatment Options ............................................................................................ 10

3. Eczema - An Overview .................................................................. 12

What is Eczema?................................................................................................... 15

Who Develops Eczema?....................................................................................... 15

Cause ..................................................................................................................... 16

Treatment............................................................................................................... 16

4. Types of Eczema ........................................................................... 17

Atopic eczema................................................................................................... 17

Infantile Seborrhoeic Eczema.......................................................................... 18

Irritant Contact Dermatitis ............................................................................... 18

5. Signs and Symptoms of a Typical Eczema ................................. 19

Common Signs and Symptoms of Eczema ........................................................ 19

6. What is the Real Cause of Eczema? ............................................ 21

7. Risk Factors for Eczema............................................................... 23

8. Who Gets Eczema? ....................................................................... 25

9. Eczema in Children ....................................................................... 27

10. Recent Research on Eczema...................................................... 29

11. How to Diagnose Eczema ........................................................... 31

12. Tips to Avoid Eczema ................................................................. 34

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A Few Tips to Avoid Eczema ............................................................................... 34

13. Treatment Options for Eczema .................................................. 38

14. Natural Remedies to Prevent and Sooth Eczema ..................... 42

Prevention.............................................................................................................. 42

Soothing Eczema or Dermatitis....................................................................... 42

Acupuncture and Meditation ........................................................................... 44

Massage and Aromatherapy............................................................................ 44

Herbal therapy................................................................................................... 44

Other Care ......................................................................................................... 45

The Result.............................................................................................................. 45

15. Treating Eczema with Herbs....................................................... 46

16. Treating Eczema with Acupuncture........................................... 48

17. Treating Eczema with Vitamins and Supplements ................... 50

18. Treating Eczema with Traditional Chinese Medicine ............... 52

19. The Impact of Eczema................................................................. 54

20. Eczema and Diet .......................................................................... 56

21. Psoriasis - An Overview.............................................................. 58

Types of Psoriasis ................................................................................................ 58

Psoriasis Grading ................................................................................................. 60

Psoriasis Vs Quality of life............................................................................... 60

22. What is Psoriasis?....................................................................... 61

23. Types of Psoriasis....................................................................... 64

Plaque Psoriasis ............................................................................................... 64

Guttate Psoriasis .............................................................................................. 64

Pustular Psoriasis ............................................................................................ 65

Inverse Psoriasis .............................................................................................. 65

Erythrodermic or Exfoliative Psoriasis .......................................................... 65

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Seborrhoeic psoriasis ...................................................................................... 66

Nail psoriasis..................................................................................................... 66

Psoriatic arthritis .............................................................................................. 67

24. What is the Real Cause of Psoriasis?........................................ 68

Genetic causes...................................................................................................... 68

Stress Triggers...................................................................................................... 68

Skin injury.............................................................................................................. 69

Infection Triggers.................................................................................................. 69

25. Risk Factors for Psoriasis .......................................................... 71

26. Who Gets Psoriasis?................................................................... 73

27. Psoriasis in Children................................................................... 75

28. How to Diagnosis Psoriasis ....................................................... 78

29. Some Tips to Reduce Psoriasis Events .................................... 81

30. Treatment Options for Psoriasis ................................................ 84

31. Natural Remedies to Reduce the Effects................................... 89

Yoga ................................................................................................................... 89

Massage............................................................................................................. 90

Meditation .......................................................................................................... 90

Sun and water therapy ..................................................................................... 91

Balneotherapy ................................................................................................... 91

Climatotherapy.................................................................................................. 92

Ayurvedic medicine .......................................................................................... 92

Chinese medicine ............................................................................................. 92

Self-Care with Natural products ...................................................................... 93

Exercise ............................................................................................................. 93

32. The Impact of Psoriasis .............................................................. 94

33. Psoriasis and Diet ....................................................................... 96

Helpful Foods ........................................................................................................ 96

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Foods to Avoid ...................................................................................................... 97

34. Living with Psoriasis................................................................... 99

Tackling Psoriasis................................................................................................. 99

Artificial and Temporary Camouflage........................................................... 100

35. Winter Care of Psoriasis ........................................................... 102

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Part-I: Introduction

1. Eczema and Psoriasis – An Introduction

Eczema and Psoriasis are allergic skin conditions that display itchy,

scaly and red skin. These inflammatory skin conditions can occur at

any time of your life. Often, eczema and psoriasis begin in your

childhood and continue throughout your growing years and adult life

too. Both eczema and psoriasis have minor differences in their

symptoms and characteristics.

They both result in thickening of the skin due to intense and

persistent scratching. The rashes often appear as painful swellings

with matter oozing from them. Sometimes, the cracks bleed and

there is a burning sensation on the scales when the sufferer sweats.

They manifest at nighttime and you start scratching your skin like

crazy.

Causes

Eczema and psoriasis are allergic conditions that can develop into

serious problems. They may result from allergies from soaps,

perfumes, laundry detergents, chemicals, food allergens, certain

metals as in metal jewelry, and animal dander.

Psoriasis is often the result of external allergies, while eczema is

due to internal allergies - like food allergies. Common food allergens

are eggs, certain fruits including strawberries, seafood, nuts, and

wheat.

Excessive intake of sugary and starchy foods can cause eczema and

psoriasis by weakening your immune system. Processed and refined

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foods are the main cause for toxic deposits in your body that disrupt

the body immune system. Your body tries to excrete the

metabolites and toxic substances through the skin. These, in turn,

cause itchiness and rashes on your skin.

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2. Specific Characteristics

of Eczema and Psoriasis

Eczema is a skin allergy that is more intense at night. This skin

disorder occurs most frequently in people suffering from hay fever

and asthma.

Unhealthy eating habits may cause eczema.

Sometimes, eczema eruptions increase around ten days before

menstrual flow. This is due to increased progesterone levels. This

eczema then decrease during the period when the progesterone

level falls.

Psoriasis affects around 2% of all Americans. This skin disorder

affects the skin, joints, nails, and eyes. Small areas of your skin

could develop red scales (plaques) in many different shapes and

sizes, and with varying degrees of intensity.

Trauma, sinusitis and bacterial infections often cause psoriasis.

Additionally, your psoriasis condition will worsens in the winter

months due to the cold and dry weather while the hot and humid

conditions of summer are better for most sufferers.

Treatment Options

Psoriasis is often due to a deficiency of essential vitamins like

magnesium and zinc.

There is no permanent cure for eczema and psoriasis. You have to

change your dietary habits and stay away from various allergic

substances.

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Detoxification through saunas, exercises that cause you to sweat,

liver and kidney cleansing, bowel cleansing and reduction of stress

can bring marked improvements and much-wanted relief too.

Meditating and spending time in isolation can calm your nerves and

body. This may reduce the incidence of eczema and psoriasis.

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Part-II: Understanding Eczema

3. Eczema - An Overview

Eczema is a skin inflammation that causes itchy, swollen, and red

skin. This condition does not have any serious or life-threatening

implications but can make you feel self-conscious and

uncomfortable.

Eczema, like dermatitis, is not contagious.

There are many different kinds of eczema or dermatitis, like Neuro

dermatitis, Contact dermatitis, Stasis dermatitis, Seborrhoeic

dermatitis, Perioral dermatitis and Atopic dermatitis.

Although all types of eczema display the most common symptoms

of itching and swelling of skin, they each have their own specific

signs and symptoms.

Common causes include allergies, irritants, stress and genetic

factors.

Neurodermatitis occurs due to tight and gripping dresses and

rubbing of clothing across your skin. This is most common about

your wrists, ankles and at the back of the neck. Application of

Hydrocortisone lotions and creams, wet compresses, and sedatives

can provide relief.

Contact dermatitis occurs due to irritants like soaps, detergents

and other cleaners. Allergens like metals, rubber, cosmetics,

perfumes and certain weeds (like poison ivy) also cause eczema.

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Allergens cause eczema instantly while the effects of irritants may

only appear after a while.

Once you are able to identify the irritant or allergen, avoid it to be

free from eczema. Creams can sometimes help you get over this

eczema within a month.

Stasis dermatitis is due to fluid accumulation in tissues

underneath your skin, especially on your legs.

Seborrhoeic dermatitis is a seasonal affliction due to prevailing

weather.

Perioral dermatitis occurs near the nose or mouth. It is often due

to moisturizers, dental products and other make-up products.

Atopic dermatitis is due to allergies and is common in people with

asthma and hay fever.

Stress is a common cause for most types of eczema.

You can help to prevent some occurrences of eczema in these ways:

Warm water baths and avoiding daily bathing can retain body

moisture.

Use mild soaps and avoid antibacterial soaps.

Dry your body thoroughly with a towel.

Use moisturizing cream or lotion while your skin is damp.

Try to cover itchy areas with dressings & avoid scratching.

Wear smooth clothes to avoid irritation.

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Dress comfortably to avoid sweating.

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What is Eczema?

Eczema is a Greek word meaning ‘boiling over’. Eczema is the

same as dermatitis. Your skin normally prevents loss of water from

your body. However, eczema on your skin does not allow this to

happen. Your skin becomes dry and cracked due to lack of sufficient

moisture. This causes itchiness. The scaly skin also allows in

allergens and bacteria, causing various allergic reactions and

resulting in worsening of eczema.

Eczema is noninfectious inflammation of skin and the most common

type is Atopic dermatitis. Different irrigative factors cause

pathological changes in your skin or dermis layer. These changes

manifest as crusts, papules, vesicles, and acute edema. These cause

itchiness, scaling, and thickening of your skin. In severe cases, skin

forms plaques with patches of raised skin with watery exudates too.

These look ugly and could develop infection too.

Who Develops Eczema?

Eczema affects children and infants the most with slight affliction in

adults too. Although 1% to 2% of adults have eczema, it is a huge

20% in children and infants. Babies have a greater incidence on

their faces while young children develop eczema on elbows, inner

wrists, ankles, and knees. Some have eczema eruptions on stomach

and limbs too.

Sometimes, eczema improves with age. For some others, it is a

recurring and lifelong disorder. Again, eczema does not occur with

the same severity. Some suffer from mild afflictions while some

have severe eruptions and itchiness.

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Cause

The cause for Atopic eczema is your genes. If there is a history of

asthma and hay fever in your family, you could develop Atopic

eczema. This is due to the presence of certain allergens in the air.

Your body is unable to cope with certain scents or smells in the sir.

People with Atopic eczema are often allergic to perfumes and

detergents.

Treatment

There is no sure cure for eczema. Regular treatment can help

control your flare-ups and ease your itchiness. Treatment includes

application of steroid creams, ointments, and moisturizers. Young

children suffering from eczema can benefit through regular

application of such remedies. They may not have eczema by the

time they are in their teens.

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4. Types of Eczema

Eczema is a skin disease causing drying of skin, irritation,

itchiness, and cracking of skin too. Sometimes, it causes bleeding

through skin eruptions.

There are four main types of Eczema in Allergic Contact Dermatitis

Atopic Eczema

Infantile Seborrhoeic Eczema

Irritant Contact Dermatitis

Allergic Contact dermatitis

Such contact eczema is due to coming in contact with specific

allergens. Allergens can cause eczema if you have a specific allergy

to the substance. Common allergens include poison oak, poison ivy,

and poison sumac. You could develop allergies due to cleaning

products, deodorants, cosmetics, construction materials, and

medications too. Similarly, skin cream and lotions, fragrances,

shampoos, clothing, metals, or shoes can also cause allergies.

Atopic eczema

This type of eczema occurs early in life and is common in infants

between two to eighteen months. This occurs due to specific genetic

allergies. Mostly, some family member has allergic asthma, hay

fever, or food allergies. In babies, this eczema appears on the face,

ears, neck, and body too. Elder children find eczema eruptions on

their knees, elbows, ankles, hands, eyelids, and joints too.

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Infantile Seborrhoeic Eczema

This eczema commonly affects infants under the age of one year.

This is the same as cradle cap. It starts from the scalp or nappy

region and spreads quickly. The cause for this eczema is unknown.

It does not itch or cause any discomfort to the baby. Such eczema

clears after few weeks, although you can apply moisturizing creams

and bath oils.

Irritant Contact Dermatitis

Such contact eczema occurs due to contact with specific irritants.

These irritants cause multiple allergic reactions within the body.

Some common irritants are soap, saliva, bubble bath, sweat,

chemicals, detergents, urine, or even water. This is a common

occurrence in the hands of adults. Applying moisturizers on hands

and avoiding irritants are the common remedies.

Other types of eczema include varicose eczema, discoid eczema,

nummular eczema, asteatotic eczema, lichen simplex chronicus, and

stasis dermatitis. Varicose eczema is due to poor blood circulation

and affects middle-aged and elderly people. Discoid and nummular

eczema occur as coin-shaped round patches and is common among

middle-aged men.

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5. Signs and Symptoms of a Typical Eczema

Eczema is a common skin disease affecting children and adults.

The percentage of occurrence of eczema is higher in children. Even

infants suffer from eczema, which appears as a patch below the chin

or a cradle cap. Eczema makes your skin very sensitive and has a

very noticeable reaction to strong detergents and other irritants.

Common Signs and Symptoms of Eczema

Itching is the primary symptom of Eczema. That leads to other

symptoms like rashes. The itchiness of eczema patches can be

severe enough to wake you from your sleep at night. Itchiness of

eczema patches where your limbs bend can cause great discomfort.

The cause of the itch is still being investigated.

A patchy rash appears soon after the itching becomes intense and

the rash could cause a burning sensation too.

The skin at these regions turns red, flaky or scaly. You may find dry

scales on top of the red skin.

Sometimes, these rashes become crusty and fluids ooze out. Some

rashes appear as red and fluid-filled bumps. This symptom is

common in eczema eruptions of young children. They scratch these

and the fluid, which may contain pus in severe cases, oozes out -

giving a wet appearance.

Crusts form from the fluid of the eczema eruptions. The fluid is

normally protein-rich and these infected crusts are often golden in

color.

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Bacteria enter through these eruptions, causing increased redness

in the eczema patches and you also feel the patches becoming very

hot.

Eczema patches in adults are thicker, scaly and mostly brown in

color.

Some rashes develop cracks due to the dryness of the skin. These

cracks become painful with time.

The rashes can appear anywhere on the body. The most common

places are your arms, face, hands, legs and feet. These places are

among the first parts of your body exposed to external irritants and

allergens.

The skin at the eczema patches thickens due to your repetitive

scratching, which is very hard to avoid. This occurs as a protective

response of your skin against constant and regular itching at the

eczema patches.

The thick skin leads to fissures and splits, very common in the joints

and other flexible parts of your body like at the elbows, below the

knees, in front of the ankles.

Inflamed and eczema-affected skin flares up at any time. The

duration of the flare-up and its severity differs from person to

person. The same person may experience different types of flare-

ups. Sometimes, these flare-ups can cause many weeks of intense

discomfort.

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6. What is the Real Cause of Eczema?

The exact cause of eczema is unknown. Your body’s immune

system releases certain chemicals under the skin and, sometimes,

this can cause inflammation of your skin; you develop itches, rashes

and other symptoms of eczema.

A major contributing factor for eczema eruptions is your genetic

disposition. There is no clear medical evidence to prove which genes

are responsible for eczema. Nevertheless, if either parent has bouts

of eczema, there is a 25% to 60% chance of the child developing it.

If both parents have a history of eczema, there is a 50% to 80%

chance for occurrence of eczema in their children. The extent of

your eczema seems to depend to some degree on your exposure to

strong medications and antigens too.

Eczema seems to be due to a combination of many factors; genetic,

environmental, and within your body’s immune system. If you have

a very sensitive immune system, you have a higher chance of

developing eczema of some kind.

Other contributing factors could be your age, environment,

allergies, irritants etc.

Different types of eczema have different causes too:

Irritant Contact Dermatitis occurs due to contact with harmful

chemicals like poor quality detergents, soaps, and cleaning

products. Irritants may take a considerable time to cause eczema.

Regular, continued exposure to such irritant detergents often causes

eczema.

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Similarly, Allergic Contact Dermatitis occurs due to specific

allergens, like metal, rubber, cosmetics, perfumes, neomycin found

in most antiseptic creams and also weeds like poison ivy. These

allergens take effect immediately - you develop eczema soon after

coming in contact with them. Eczema can occur due to allergens like

pollen dust, animal dander, dust mites, and molds. Certain

workplace chemicals and fumes are also believed to cause eczema.

Neuro dermatitis seems to be linked to wearing tight-fitting and

skin hugging garments. They rub against your skin and cause

scratches and irritations that develop into eczema.

If you have oily hair or skin, you could develop Seborrhoeic

dermatitis. This type of eczema occurs according to particular

seasons. Sometimes, this occurs in people suffering from

neurological diseases like Parkinson’s disease.

Perioral dermatitis is often due to frequent use of moisturizers

and makeup. Certain dental products containing fluoride also seem

to cause this type of eczema around your nose and mouth.

Weather also plays an important role in your eczema. The cold air in

the winter months lacks moisture and makes your skin dry and

susceptible to eczema. The cold air in the summer months has more

moisture and humidity and keeps your skin moist. Sudden changes

in temperature increase itchiness and eczema. Entering a warm

room or going into cold air from a warm shower may encourage

your eczema to appear. Stress is another important factor for

eczema of any kind.

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7. Risk Factors for Eczema

Eczema is most common in children between the ages of one and

three years. More than 65% of eczema cases start before the first

birthday, while more than 90% of eczema cases occur before the

age of five. Although allergens rank as the most important cause for

eczema, it is not the same as for other allergic reactions within your

body. People with eczema have the necessary antibodies

(immunoglobulin E) to fight away allergies but eczema will still often

occur.

The major risk factors of eczema are:

Family history of asthma, hay fever, and eczema

Exposing your skin to harsh weather; extreme cold and chilling

Living in a climate that has low humidity

Family history of allergies to food, chemicals, plants, animal dander,

molds and similar allergens

Lack of specific vitamins and minerals like zinc, magnesium and

others.

Cigarette smoke

Certain fibers like wool and some synthetic materials

Mental and emotional stress

Environmental allergens like dust, smoke, pollen or sand

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Certain types of soaps, detergents, acids, dyes, cleaning agents,

perfumes, cosmetics, metal, rubber and some products containing

dental fluorides

Certain allergens like poison ivy weeds

Certain preservatives that are present in some lotions and creams

Specific types of foods like tomatoes, sweets, chocolate, alcohol,

shellfish, wheat, dairy products, corn and soybeans

Intense heat and perspiration

Illnesses like fungal skin infection, cold sores, bacterial skin

infections, Athlete’s foot, Ringworm, cuts, burns or insect bites and

bacterial infections

Lack of sufficient blood circulation in the lower parts of your body

Bathing without moisturizing

Coming into contact with metal jewelry and rubber gloves.

Although these are the general risk factors for eczema, it is not

always certain that it is these factors that are definitely the trigger

for an eczema attack. Some of these allergens may not affect some

sufferers at all. Some may cause immediate effect while some

others may have a negative effect after few days or hours. Your

individual physical and mental health also plays an important role in

your experience of eczema.

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8. Who Gets Eczema?

Eczema can occur in children and adults, although the percentage

of occurrence is higher in children. Most eczema cases are children

under the age of five. One in every six schoolchildren develops

eczema of any type. These flare-ups decrease as you grow. Most

teenagers outgrow eczema problems. In a few cases, eczema shows

considerable decrease in the teenage years.

A very small minority of children continue to have eczema in their

adult years too. The incidence is very low as about only three in a

hundred adults have eczema. However, you cannot predict which of

the children would carry forth their eczema into adult years or which

would leave eczema behind with their teen years. Again, it is very

rare for adults over twenty to develop eczema.

Infants are the most vulnerable to eczema that occur due to

allergies from your genes or the environment. Genetic allergies to

asthma, hay fever, food allergies and nasal allergies are believed to

cause most cases of eczema. Allergies are hereditary factors that

are believed to be responsible for causing eczema. You have a

higher chance of developing eczema if you have a family history of

such allergies.

Environmental factors may also determine your eczema attacks.

These factors affect your body’s immune system and its response

when similar circumstances occur again later. Too little and too

much response to environment is unhealthy. Therefore, setting the

body immune system and response to the correct level in early

childhood is essential to maintain your health.

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Children growing up in a country environment may have fewer

chances of developing allergies of asthma, hay fever, and

consequent eczema. Similarly, children with older siblings, those in

day care homes, and those developing many cold infections have